PROCEDURES USED BY EDUCATIONAL AGENCIES TO MONITOR AND MAINTAIN AMPLIFICATION SYSTEMS WORN BY HEARING IMPAIRED STUDENTS (AUDIOLOGY, HEARING AIDS).
KeywordsHearing aids -- Maintenance and repair.
Hearing disorders in children.
Children with disabilities -- Education -- Law and legislation -- United States.
United States. Education for All Handicapped Children Act.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractResearch evidence indicates that hearing aids and auditory trainers worn by school children routinely malfunction. Ensuring properly functioning amplification is a preferred educational practice and is required by PL 94-142 regulations. Research was needed to determine if schools were complying with the regulations and recommended educational procedures. This study described and evaluated procedures used by educational agencies to monitor and maintain amplification units worn by hearing-impaired students. Two examiner-developed survey intruments were mailed to residential and public day school teachers and administrators to collect data and answer 11 research questions pertaining to: (1) monitoring and maintenance procedures, (2) relationships between demographic, personnel, and placement characteristics and preferred monitoring and maintenance practices, and (3) monitoring and maintenance practices compared with a model of preferred practice. Personnel were surveyed in one residential school for the deaf in each state and a stratified random sample of 200 public day schools. A total of 310 (63%) surveys were returned from 164 (65.6%) administrators and 146 (58.4%) teachers. Results indicated that the majority of programs had some system of monitoring and maintaining amplification units, but only 54.1% (73) performed daily checks of hearing aids and 58.3% (67) performed daily checks of auditory trainers. Teachers in 76.9% of the sample reported that electroacoustic analysis was available as one part of audiologic evaluation, but not usually scheduled on a routine basis. Teachers were responsible for monitoring activities in over 75% of programs, regardless of the educational model: self-contained, resource, or itinerant. Significant positive relationships were found between (1) program size and one preferred monitoring and maintenance variable, (2) full-time audiologist and three preferred variables, (3) residential school placement and four preferred variables, (4) inservice training and three preferred variables, (5) full-time audiologist and program size and (6) full-time audiologist and residential school placement. These and additional findings suggest that while some improvement in monitoring and maintenance practices has occurred since the implementation of PL 94-142, full compliance by employing preferred professional practices has not been achieved. Recommendations are made for improving personnel preparation, monitoring and maintenance practices, and research.
Degree ProgramSpecial Education and Rehabilitation