chapter  18
12 Pages

Deafblindness

Deafblindness (multisensory impairment) is variously written as a single word, suggesting that the combined effect of being deaf and blind is greater than the sum of its parts, or as two separate words, 'deaf blind' or as hyphenated words, 'deaf-blind'. Deafblindness under US legislation, is a condition in which the combination of hearing loss and visual loss cause such severe communication and developmental needs that they cannot be accommodated in special education programs solely for children with deafness or children with blindness. The general implications for learning are related to the effect that deafblindness has on a child's ability to gain information about the environment and from the environment. This slows the pace of learning affecting communication and the development of relationships; mobility and interaction with the physical environment and the processing and integration of information from residual hearing, vision and other senses.