Additional Language Acquisition of d/Deaf and Hard of Hearing Immigrant Students in Germany
Goal: Summary: This project aims at (1) initiating research on d/Deaf and Hard of Hearing (Dhh) immigrant students with various language acquisition experiences in Germany and (2) improving teacher training for future educators of these students.
Despite being a world-wide concern, there is a dearth of research regarding the linguistic development and education of newly immigrated d/Deaf and hard of hearing (Dhh) students. This is especially true for Germany. New immigrant schoolchildren in Germany are in general educated without robust information about their different learning trajectories, language profiles, instructional interventions, and language acquisition of German; for Dhh learners, this is especially true, and there exists to date no information on the development of their written and spoken language skills in German or in the heritage language(s) nor on their acquisition of German Sign Language (DGS). Thus, there is not only a clear gap in research on a group that is both under-researched and under-supported due to the extenuating circumstances associated with their migration and second language acquisition, but also a clear gap in the training of teachers who teach them and the development of learning materials.
The current project sets three objectives. First, an exploratory research project examines language instruction for this group of learners with the goal of ascertaining general information about the classroom situation. Second, teacher training will be strengthened in the Master's program for Special Education students with this specialty ("Förderschwerpunkt Hören und Kommunikation"), including interdisciplinary work both in Special Education and in the mandatory courses on German as an Additional Language (DaZ). Third, an interdisciplinary cooperation will be initiated to further interlink the areas of DaZ and Special Education in teaching and research.
Date: 1 April 2021