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River Research

One of The River School's objectives is to conduct research in educational domains on best practices in the classroom. The school is dedicated to validating its own approaches, researching innovations and sharing results with others in our field nationally and globally. Many of our clinicians and educators present our findings at national conferences and workshops throughout the year.

Social Outcomes of Peer Models. Extensive research has been conducted on the far-reaching impact a fully inclusive classroom can have on children with special needs. However, there are remarkably few published studies that examine the specific social-emotional benefits for typically developing children. The River School is conducting a three-year study designed to examine the trajectory of social development of typically developing peers and their classmates with hearing loss in our model.

Childhood Development after Cochlear Implantation. This is a national study (funded by the National Institutes of Health, Primary Investigator: John K. Niparko, MD), which identifies factors influencing oral language, cognitive, psychosocial and scholastic performance in young children with cochlear implants. The River School is a sub-contractor to Johns Hopkins on the CDaCI grant and provides control data is three areas; speech and language, cognitive and psychosocial development, and audiological status. Cochlear Implants Int. 8(2), 92-116, 2007; JAMA, April 21, 2010—Vol 303, No. 15.

Hearing Loss and Literature Connections. This three-year study examines the ways in which the reading strategy, forming connections, could help children with hearing loss construct meaning from literature despite the absence of varied vocabulary and background knowledge, and apply it to their own writing.

Achieving Developmental Synchrony in Children with Cochlear Implants. This is a prospective study currently in year fourteen. Baseline data on young children with cochlear implants has been collected across domains, including non-verbal IQ, speech and language, motor, and vestibular and socioemotional functioning

Correlation of Neurocognitive Processing Subtypes with Language Performance in Young Children with Cochlear Implants. This study explored the sequential and simultaneous neurocognitive processing of a group of River School children with CIs whose language development was below expectations. Cochlear Implants Int., March 2014.

Intensive Literacy Enrichment Activities for Diverse Populations (I-LEAD): A Summer Literacy Program for Low-Income Children with Hearing Loss. This project is designed to meet the needs of diverse populations from low-income backgrounds with hearing loss, with the plan to improve the access to services for this population. The primary goal of this project is to employ a variety of reading techniques in an intensive summer program with low-income students with hearing loss, in order to improve overall receptive and expressive language skills. Primary Investigator: Sharlene Ottley, Ph.D., CCC-SLP; Funded by: The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) Office of Multicultural Affairs Grant Program 
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