Date of Defense

Spring 4-6-2009


Speech Pathology and Audiology


Current research suggests that implantation of cochlear implants before 2 years of age significantly impacts oral language development, specifically in increased rate of oral language development. In addition, children who have been implanted early (between 12 months and two years) have been shown to obtain age-appropriate language skills, whereas children who have been implanted later (after 2 years of age), or not implanted at all, do not. Because of the documented benefits of early implantation, researchers have recently pushed to lower the current minimum age of implantation to below 12 months of age. Although research suggests improvements in language development with early implantation, surgery at such a young age is considered risk and controversial.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access