Characterizing North Carolina's Deaf and Hard of Hearing Infants and Toddlers: Predictors of Vocabulary, Diagnosis, and Intervention.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


This study sought to (a) characterize the demographic, audiological, and intervention variability in a population of Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) children receiving state services for hearing loss; (b) identify predictors of vocabulary delays; and (c) evaluate factors influencing the success and timing of early identification and intervention efforts at a state level.


One hundred DHH infants and toddlers (aged 4-36 months) enrolled in early intervention completed the MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventories, and detailed information about their audiological and clinical history was collected. We examined the influence of demographic, clinical, and audiological factors on vocabulary outcomes and early intervention efforts.


We found that this sample showed spoken language vocabulary delays (production) relative to hearing peers and showed room for improvement in rates of early diagnosis and intervention. These delays in vocabulary and early support services were predicted by an overlapping subset of hearing-, health-, and home-related variables.


In a diverse sample of DHH children receiving early intervention, we identify variables that predict delays in vocabulary and early support services, which reflected both dimensions that are immutable, and those that clinicians and caretakers can potentially alter. We provide a discussion on the implications for clinical practice.

Supplemental material

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Campbell, E; Bergelson, E

Published Date

  • May 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 65 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 1894 - 1905

PubMed ID

  • 35363581

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1558-9102

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1092-4388

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1044/2022_jslhr-21-00245


  • eng