Developmental outcomes in early school-age children with minimal hearing loss

Heather Porter, Douglas P. Sladen, Steve B. Ampah, Ann Rothpletz, Fred H. Bess

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Purpose: Previous research suggests that school-age children with minimal hearing loss (CMHL) are at risk for a variety of psychoeducational problems. However, CMHL are a heterogeneous group, and the profile of at-risk children is unknown. Data regarding the characteristics of early school-age CMHL are needed to extend previous findings and determine potential risk factors associated with psychoeducational difficulties. Method: Psychoeducational outcomes were evaluated at baseline and longitudinally in age-matched groups of 27 CMHL (ages 4-10 years) and 26 children with normal hearing (CNH) using assessments of language, reading, behavior, speech recognition in noise, and cognition. Additional analyses were used to identify demographic characteristics among CMHL that are associated with psychoeducational difficulties. Results: At the earliest age tested, CMHL had greater teacher-rated attention difficulties in the classroom than CNH. Differences in the rate of psychoeducational development were not observed between groups. Among CMHL, psychoeducational difficulties were associated with delays in identification of hearing loss and low maternal education. Conclusions: Classroom attention abilities should be monitored for early school-age CMHL. Late-identified CMHL and CMHL with low maternal education levels may be in particular need of academic and social support. Continued efforts for early identification of CMHL should be made to improve outcomes for these children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)263-270
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican journal of audiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Children
  • Minimal hearing loss
  • Outcomes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Speech and Hearing


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