Communication development from an intersubjective perspective: Exploring the use of a layered communication model to describe communication development in students with congenital deafblindness

Kirsten Wolthuis, Gerard W. Bol, Alexander Minnaert, Marleen J. Janssen

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

2 Citaten (Scopus)
100 Downloads (Pure)


This exploratory study conducts a quantitative investigation on the communication development of students with congenital deafblindness (CDB). First, a layered communication model (LCM) is introduced, describing communicative behaviors based on three layers of intersubjective development for typically developing children (Bråten & Trevarthen, 2007). Subsequently, an analysis is made of how applicable the LCM is for children with CDB. Video recordings of four dyads of students with CDB with varying developmental ages and their teachers are coded using ten-second partial interval coding. The presence of LCM behaviors, the student and teacher contributions to communication, and the development over a halfyear period are described and compared between dyads. The results reflected the developmental differences between dyads. At the primary layer, all behaviors occurred a comparable number of times between dyads, which confirms that this is a basic communication layer. Quantitative differences between dyads were encountered between and within the secondary and tertiary layers. Teacher contribution was higher for students with lower developmental ages compared to students with higher developmental ages. Also, teacher contribution was higher for the secondary and tertiary layer behaviors of the LCM compared to the primary layer behaviors. No increase was found in the behaviors over the half-year period. Results suggest that the LCM can be used to gain insight into the communication level of a dyad, hereby paving the way for intervention studies to improve communication development.
Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)35-51
Aantal pagina's17
TijdschriftJournal of Communication Disorders
Vroegere onlinedatum25-apr.-2019
StatusPublished - jul.-2019

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