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NCHAM: National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management, Utah State University

Hearing Aid Listening Check

Young children who use hearing aids are not able to tell their parents and other caregivers when the hearing aids are not working correctly. This video provides instructions for parents, teachers, and early interventionists about how to check and monitor hearing aid function. There is also a written handout [PDF] that can be printed to have available.

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I am a parent and this is just wonderful, this should be circulated to all educators and parents! I have wanted a video like this to distribute to professionals working with my kids as well as parents new to the journey.

A few observations... you didn't tell people to use something like the ling sounds to check the aids in the direct listen check so you are using a consistent and frequency balanced set of sounds that you are accustomed to hearing every day. If you don't use something consistent everyday you are less likely to be able to identify subtle changes.

In the Ling sound check I wished you had encouraged people to do it left/right and not binaural. If there is a problem with one ear you are less likely to catch it binaural and given how quickly you can administer the Ling test it doesn't add much time to do it left/right. The distance and volume of the speaker is also important and should be clarified. You should let people know it's important that the goal in the ling test is to move away from object association not just for older children. Young children can be taught relatively quickly to repeat. Using the objects is not only hugely impractical as you are rushing to get your kids ready for school and out of the house or into their classrooms, but more importantly object identification doesn't encourage the child to repeat what they heard which provides valuable clues to the tester and holds the child more accountable for their listening. Our DHH teacher uses a chart to note the sounds and report errors specifically to be able to see errors that might be repeat offenders over time and how the substitutions are being made which we in turn can take to our audiologist. The administering of the Ling sounds needs to be a different order every day and in a different rhythm so the child cannot predict.

The video is quite long, you need to let people know how quickly these tests can be done with some practice and the importance of them being integrated into one's daily life. It's important not only for ensuring the technology is functioning, but also training your child AND the educators that this is a daily expectation... sowing those seeds of the child's self advocacy and accountability for their daily listening environment and the teachers/aides being responsible for ensuring functioning technology in the classroom for any child with hearing loss.

Speech screens are strongly discouraged by most AVTs now and putting your hand over your mouth is the worst thing you can do; I wish the video didn't show her obscuring her mouth with her hand. We have always been encouraged to position ourselves in such a way the child cannot speech read and to not block our faces with anything that can affect sound quality and volume.

I would love to see a part 2 to this on daily FM checks at school. It is absolutely critical to educate the educators on how important this step is before a child steps foot in their classroom everyday.

Probably more comments than you were after, but really kudos to you for taking on this topic.

Posted by: Kille Knobel, 04/2/14