Children who are Deaf and hard of hearing (DHH) grow-up in environments influenced by their parents' attitudes. These attitudes may act as barriers or facilitators to children's development and participation (World Health Organization, 2007). The attitudes held by 152 Australian parents of DHH children aged between 3;7 years and 9;5 years (mean = 6;5) were investigated using the Opinions about Deaf People scale (Berkay, Gardner, & Smith, 1995b). The parents' responses showed they had very positive attitudes towards the capabilities of DHH adults and consistently had strongly positive responses to items describing the intellectual and vocational capabilities of DHH adults. Parents' responses to the majority of items on the Opinions about Deaf People scale were positively skewed. This raises questions about the validity of this scale as a research tool when used with parents of DHH children. These findings suggest that for these DHH children, parents' attitudes may be facilitative, rather than presenting an environmental barrier to children's development.
Crowe, K., McLeod, S., McKinnon, D. H., & Ching, T. Y. C. (2015). Attitudes toward the capabilities of deaf and hard of hearing adults: insights from the parents of deaf and hard of hearing children. American Annals of the Deaf, 160(1), 24-35. https://doi.org/10.1353/aad.2015.0013