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An Examination of the Writing Strategies Used by Deaf and Hearing Adults: Similarities and Differences in Cognitive, Linguistic and Conventional Components

Nicolarakis, Onudeah Desiree

This study is a mixed-methods analysis of writing processes and the reading and language experiences of d/Deaf and hearing participants. The sample consisted of three groups of 15 adults each, identified as either high-achieving d/Deaf readers, high-achieving hearing readers, or struggling d/Deaf readers. The purpose of this study is to identify factors related to writing achievement and to explore themes that emerge within an asset-based/anti-deficit, d/Deaf bilingualism/Deaf Gain theoretical framework. Five quantitative measures are used in the study: a reading comprehension assessment, a background questionnaire, a handwriting speed test, a phonological skills assessment, and a writing assessment measuring the cognitive, linguistic, and conventional components. Scores from the writing assessment are correlated with demographic statistics and other assessments to identify factors of writing achievement. Similarities and differences among groups of participants are tested with MANOVAs to identify mean differences in scores according to hearing status (d/Deaf/hearing) and reading achievement level (high-achieving/struggling). Qualitative data were gathered by collecting, reviewing, coding, and identifying overarching themes in the interview transcripts within an asset-based/anti-deficit, d/Deaf Bilingualism/Deaf Gain theoretical framework. The findings show that high-achieving d/Deaf participants performed at levels similar to those attained by high-achieving hearing participants, and that for all participants, reading comprehension, phonological skills, handwriting speed, and personal factors were related to writing achievement. Similarities and differences in reading and writing ability were also found. Access to language and explicit instructional approaches emerged as overarching themes in writing effectively.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
Physical Disabilities
Thesis Advisors
Wang, Ye
Degree
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
June 22, 2020