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The implications of impaired language on case management and clinical assessment in Deaf adults with psychosis

Research output: Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings - With ISBN/ISSNConference contribution/Paperpeer-review

Publication date07/2015
Host publication22nd International Congress on the Education of the Deaf. Educating Diverse Learners: Many Ways, One Goal: Book of Absracts
Place of PublicationAthens
PublisherUniversity of Patras
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The ways that language is understood and produced by people experiencing psychosis has been the focus of numerous investigations ever since Bleuler in 1911 firstly considered ‘association disturbance’ as one of the fundamental symptoms of schizophrenia is hearing adults that led to the investigation of formal thought disorder. With the explosion of sign psycholinguistics the last couple of decades, researchers have been unravelling the implications of the absence of audition on the development, comprehension and production of language. Not many studies, however, explore how language manifests itself in Deaf adults with psychosis. In the first experimental group psycholinguistic investigation with profoundly prelingually British Deaf adults with psychosis we found a disproportionate increase of handshape errors in classifier production when compared to nouns and lexicalised responses. This finding emphasises the uniquely complicated and cognitively demanding morpho-phonological processes of classifiers, which often results in significantly impairing language production at the level of semantics. Outside their theoretical implications on the understanding of language on the whole, these findings also have clinical implications on case formulation, management and clinical assessment of Deaf people with psychosis. The aim of this presentation is to discuss the study finding in the context of clinical practice, with the view to enhance our understanding of the language needs of Deaf people with psychosis in mental health settings and to offer evidence based clinical recommendations.