Choosing a method of communication for a child with hearing loss is a complex process that must occur early to prevent developmental consequences. Research shows that parents’ decisions are influenced by professionals; parental attitudes and knowledge also may be influential. The present study investigated additional influences on parents’ choices; data were collected via an online survey (N = 36). Results indicated no effects of parents’ knowledge of development on their communication choices, but did indicate an effect of parents’ values and priorities for their children. Further, parents who chose speech only received information from education or speech/audiology professionals more often. However, there were no group differences in sources parents cited as influential; all parents relied on their own judgment. Results suggest that parents internalize the opinions of professionals. Thus, accurate information from professionals is necessary for parents to make informed decisions about their children’s communication.


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pp. 326-339
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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