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Durham University

School of Education

Staff Profile

Publication details for Prof Christine Merrell

Tymms, P., Brien, D., Merrell, C., Collins, J. & Jones, P. (2003). Young deaf children and the prediction of reading and mathematics. Journal of Early Childhood Research 1(2): 197-212.

Author(s) from Durham


Nearly 1000 deaf children were assessed upon entry to school, aged four and five years, using a broad baseline assessment, and then again one year later in reading and maths. Comparative data were also available for hearing children. These data were used to look at the prediction of the academic achievement of children with varying degrees of hearing loss. Despite past failures at establishing good predictors and despite the apprently very complex nature of the task, clear and simple prediction proved to be possible. The findings are discussed in terms of monitoring systems and research potential.


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The literature has been ambivalent about predictors reading for deaf children. This shows how our baseline works as well for deaf children as for hearing children except the profoundly deaf.