Closed captioning as a literacy tool for deaf and hard-of-hearing middle school students
AuthorAmann, Nancy Hilbok
KeywordsEducation, Bilingual and Multicultural.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study seeks to ascertain the potential influence of television closed-captioning on literacy among deaf and hard-of-hearing children. Television watching has become increasingly popular among deaf and hard-of-hearing children (Hobbs, 2005), and past studies show exciting potential for the use of closed-captioning as a literacy tool (Koskinen, Wilson & Jensema, 1985; Jensema, McCann & Ramsey, 1996). The study took place over 5 weeks and was conducted with 13 middle school students at a school for the deaf. As part of the study, the 13 students were shown 10 different 30-minute captioned video segments of different genres and interests. Prior to and after each showing, the students took pre-and-post tests containing five vocabulary words that appeared in the video shown. (Each post-test contained the same five words appearing in its corresponding pre-test.) In addition, after each showing, the students engaged in classroom discussions on the recently-viewed video program, which were observed and analyzed. The findings--and, in particular, the pre-and post-test scores--showed marked improvement in vocabulary scores after each captioned program viewing. The findings also potentially indicate that closed-captioning can expose deaf and hard-of-hearing children to new and unfamiliar words to which they otherwise would not be exposed. In addition, the post-viewing discussions indicated that, throughout the study, the students employed the tri-level literacy framework, using functional, cultural, and critical literacy. And, by discussing in American Sign Language (ASL) the recently-viewed captions, the students employed linguistic interdependence, or the use of dominant and secondary languages to reinforce development in both. Closed captioning also proved to be a useful source of "triggering" words, which generated experience and funds-of-knowledge recollection among the students. As a part of media literacy, closed-captioning is a motivating tool that teachers can use to activate prior knowledge among deaf students. In sum, this study shows that closed-captioning can positively impact literacy levels among deaf and hard-of-hearing students. Accordingly, closed-captioning can play a useful role in developing literacy, and parents and educators of deaf children should devise ways to incorporate closed-captioning as part of the deaf child's literacy environment.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Language, Reading & Culture