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Pauline van der STRATEN WAILLET

Licenciée en logopédie

Aantal beurzen:
2019-2020 | 2020-2021 - 2021-2022: "Bourse Antoine d'Ansembourg" | 2022-2023

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Accuracy of speech production in children with cochlear implant whose home language is not French

Project supervisor

Colin Cécile & Charlier Brigitte

Labo of hospitaal waar het project plaatsvindt

Center for Research in Cognition and Neuroscience, ULB-Free University of Brussels

Objectives of research

This project aims to assess the accuracy of speech production in children with Cochlear Implants (CI) whose Home language is not French.


Speech therapy is a profession essentially based on studies carried out with mainstream populations (western, monolingual, Anglo-Saxon, middle to upper-middle class). Professional practices are therefore not necessarily adapted to the diversity observed among children, or to languages other than English. In a city like Brussels, bilingualism is more the norm than the exception, so that most speech therapists receive bilingual children. When working with a bilingual child, it is not easy to distinguish between a real speech disorder and normal manifestations of bilingual speech development. Bilingual children with speech disorders are at risk of being misdiagnosed or offered inappropriate interventions. This project asks the following question: How to assess in French the speech accuracy of bilingual children for clinical decision-making? It focuses on children in 3rd-grade kindergarten whose family language is not French because, at this age, phonological skills - related to speech sounds - are an important predictor of reading acquisition and academic success. This project is also interested in the specific case of bilingual children with severe to profound hearing loss who have cochlear implants. Thanks to this technology, they have access to the oral languages around them and can develop more than one language. However, the scientific literature about these children is still poor and clinical observations suggest, at least in Brussels, that these children have difficulty in developing accurate speech and that this negatively affects their functioning and participation.

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