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ISSN: 2375-4427

Journal of Communication Disorders, Deaf Studies & Hearing Aids
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Short Communication

Introduction of Visual Amharic to Educate Deaf Students in Ethiopia - A Pilot Study

Thomas Shull1, Molash Hailu2, Abera Nega3, Telahun Gebrehiwot4 and Miriam Redleaf5*

1Boston Public Schools, 2300 West Washington St., Roxbury, USA

2Vicktory School, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

3East Africa Hearing Aid Center, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

4Boston University, Boston, USA

5University of Illinois Hospitals and Health Sciences System, Chicago, USA

*Corresponding Author:
Miriam Redleaf
MD FACS, University of Illinois Hospitals
and Health Sciences System, Rm 2.42, 1855
W. Taylor St., Chicago, IL 60612, USA
Tel: 312-996-6582
Fax: 312-996-4910
E-mail: [email protected]

Received date: November 22, 2015 Accepted date: February 05, 2016 Published date: February 20, 2016

Citation: Shull T, Hailu M, Nega A, Gebrehiwot T, Redleaf M (2016) Introduction of Visual Amharic to Educate Deaf Students in Ethiopia - A Pilot Study. Commun Disord Deaf Stud Hearing Aids 4:153. doi: 10.4172/2375-4427.1000153

Copyright: © 2016 Shull T, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Objective: To describe the reception of Visual Amharic in 3 schools for the Deaf in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Design: Cued Speech enhances lip-reading by providing real-time visual representations of the phonemes of spoken English. This system was adapted to Amharic, the national language of Ethiopia, and taught in 3 weeklong workshops there. Results: Three weeklong workshops were provided with 6 months’ intervals between. The first workshop had 39 attendees, the second had 57, and the third had 69 attendees. The first workshop’s 39 attendees were24 Deaf students, 8 faculty, and 7 parents. The second workshop’s 57 attendees were 12 Deaf students (2 new/10 returning), 44 faculty (37 new/7 returning), and 1 returning parent. The third workshop’s attendees were 38 Deaf students and 31 teachers from 6 schools. Between the first and the second workshops 26 attendees (17 students, 7 faculty and 1 parent) reported on their use of Visual Amharic in a survey: All but 1 had used Visual Amharic since the workshop. Six students and 6 teachers had taught it to others. Conclusion: Cued Speech was adapted to Visual Amharic. Attendees were able to grasp its structure and begin it use after a weeklong introduction.


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