Loes Wauters is a senior researcher at Kentalis and the Behavioural Science Institute (Radboud University Nijmegen). Her research focuses on the language, reading, and math development of deaf and hard of hearing learners. Current projects focus on early literacy and early math development in DHH children, adolescents, and adults. Parent involvement, and training of parents and professionals in care and education are also addressed in these projects.
In 2018 Wauters et al. have studied the reading performance of 80 DHH adults in the Netherlands. This study resulted in the proposal of three reading profiles: weak readers, superficial readers, and comprehending readers. Almost two thirds of the research group was found to be functionally illiterate. In this study the weak and superficial readers scored at or below the expected level at the end of primary education. Because literacy is crucial to be able to participate in society, we must focus on improving DHH students’ reading skills to prepare them for full participation in society. In this presentation we will provide information about the characteristics of the reading skills of DHH adolescents and adults. In addition, we will discuss implications for reading interventions for the group of struggling readers.