Devices help study how kids with cochlear implants learn

27th March 2017
Enaie Azambuja

At the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center scientists are working on figuring out how young deaf kids adjust to their new cochlear implants and how they utilise the technology to study the world around them. While the devices liberate the hearing sense, children with cochlear implants are not as quick to learn new words as children with normal hearing. The research team has setup a special play room that has a bunch of cameras that capture what’s going on from many angles.

Within, a child and parent spend time at a table playing different games within which new objects are introduced. Both the child and parent wear a rig on their head that has a camera tracking the movement and gaze of the eyes of both participants.

When a new object is unveiled, the scientists can hone in on what the child touches and examines, how the focus changes, and what the reaction is to spoken words that match nearby objects.

The researchers are hoping to identify the learning approaches that kids with cochlear implants naturally use, with the hope of developing a targeted approach that will improve language training and how such kids absorb new information.

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