Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences

First Advisor

Connie C. Carlson

Second Advisor

Dr. Michael J. Clark

Third Advisor

Dr. James M. Hillenbrand

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Nickola W. Nelson

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Students with hearing impairments (N = 21) wrote a personal narrative each academic year from 1990 to 1992. These narratives were rated on maturity of the story as a whole and maturity of the language used in the story by senior undergraduate students in the education department at Western Michigan University. The method used for rating was a holistic magnitude estimation technique.

Significant change over time was found for story scores, but not language scores. Grade level was found to have no significant effect on change from first to last ratings for either story scores or language scores. Degree of hearing loss had no significant effect on story scores or language score change. Educational placement had a significant effect on both story scores and language scores. Finally, no significance was found for the effect of interaction of hearing level and educational placement on story scores but a significant interaction effect was found on language scores. A number of significant correlations were also found among story scores and language scores.