We are conducting a study examining the brain mechanisms used by readers who are deaf and hard of hearing!

Want to see if your child qualifies? Fill out this survey!

Want to learn about our project in American Sign Language (ASL)?

Project Description:

We study how children’s brains process written language; this includes hearing, deaf, and hard of hearing children. We use functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to measure brain structure and activity. fMRI is safe and non-invasive (there is NOT radiation like with X-ray).

Why Participate:

  • Taking part in this study may help scientists better understand how children learn to read, and the mechanisms support reading development in hearing, deaf and hard of hearing children.
  • Children who participate receive a picture of their brain to take home with them.
  • Participants who enroll in this study will receive payment to compensate them for their participation.
  • Parents may elect to receive a report with results of their child’s standardized testing results.

Who is invited?

Hearing, deaf, and hard of hearing 10-13 year olds

Children CANNOT participate in MRI studies if they:

  • Have any metal in the body (braces, implants, etc.)
  • Have history of premature birth, uncorrected visual impairment, psychiatric disorders, or neurological disease
  • Are left handed
  • Are claustrophobic

What to expect:

Participants will be asked to participate in two separate days of testing. Each visit is 1.5 hours. In both sessions, an interpreter fluent in American Sign Language will be present for deaf and hard of hearing participants who use American Sign Language.

  • First session includes: standardized academic testing and MRI practice session where we will teach what it is like to do an MRI using an MRI simulator
  • Second session includes: real MRI scan and hearing/speech testing

Both visits can be scheduled during the day, after school, or on weekends. For both visits, a legal parent or guardian must be present so we can better introduce the study and have you sign consent forms for your child. All the data provided by your child will remain confidential. No child will be identified by name in any reports of this study.

If you are interested in enrolling your child or would like more information, please contact us via email or 615-240-7816!