Storytelling Abilities of Children with Cochlear Implants (CI)


  • Nicole Walklin MacEwan University


The purpose of the present study is to assess the storytelling abilities of children with cochlear implants (CI). This creative delivery combines both linguistic and cognitive skills, providing an indication of children’s social-communicative development. Insight into the macro and microstructure level features of CI children’s stories can reveal aspects of a child’s language grammar development. CI children’s storytelling abilities, along with age-matched normal hearing (NH) peers, were assessed in topics on personal events (autobiographical memory) and in topics on novel fictional events (semantic memory). The child selected a story topic among four options then told a story in relation to the topic, creating a total of four stories. Audio recordings were transcribed and the narratives were analyzed for overall structure, conjunctions, and referents. Preliminary findings reveal that CI children’s narrative ability was similar to that of their NH peers in personal stories. However, their narrative abilities were lower in fictional topics than in personal story topics. This was attributed to their difficulties in the use of conjunctions. The findings will assist parents, educators, and practitioners in identifying learning conditions that can optimize CI children’s language outcomes through creative language activities.


Crosson, J., & Geers, A. (2001). Analysis of narrative ability in children with cochlear implants. Ear & Hearing, 22, 381-394.

Department: Psychology 

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Tara Vongpaisal