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Captions and Reading Rates of Hearing Impaired Students

This 1980 paper, written by Edgar Shroyer and Jack Birch, examines the results of a study in which 185 randomly selected hearing-impaired students from residential schools participated. Indicates that normal extempore speech is measured at 159 words per minute (wpm), and that speech and language on television and films approximates this rate. Finds that if speech on television/films is synchronized in content and speed with captions, approximately 84 percent (%) of hearing-impaired students are not able to read it. (That is, 84% of the students in the study possess reading rates below the 159 wpm of extempore speech.) Notes that other research indicates that the linguistic level of captions would further significantly compounded students' reading rate difficulties. Also finds that the mean wpm reading rate of primary students in their study is 123.7.

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Tags: research, captioning