The British Association of Teachers of the Deaf
Promoting Excellence in Deaf Education

Deaf Education Research update from Moray House, University of Edinburgh - January 2010

  1. Standardising Science Signs in BSL
    The Scottish Sensory Centre, based at Moray House in the University of Edinburgh, has recently finished interviewing deaf children about their views of the BSL Science signs glossary website. The researchers (Dr Audrey Cameron and Gary Quinn from Heriot-Watt University) are also collecting views from teachers and Communication Support Workers. The team has produced a BSL article for the Learning Teaching Scotland website explaining how the science signs and definitions were developed by a group of Deaf scientists fluent in BSL. This will be online on LTS early in 2010. Here is the link to the SSC Science Signs Glossary

  2. Investigating staff skills in Scotland’s colleges and universities
    The NATED Scotland is doing a small piece of research in 2010 to ask staff in all Scotland's Colleges and Universities about the skills and training of staff who work with deaf students. Rachel O'Neill from the University of Edinburgh and Dr Elizabeth Mooney from Glasgow Caledonian University will be interviewing a sample of staff to find out their views about their training and professional development.

  3. Scottish Deaf Education Scoping Study
    Working with the Scottish Sensory Centre and NDCS, Marian Grimes has produced a scoping study about deaf education in Scotland. This report has been produced for the BSL and Linguistic Access Strategy group of the Equality Unit in the Scottish Government. The detailed commentary and analysis will be useful for planning developments in deaf education in Scotland. scoping study about deaf education in Scotland

  4. Impact of the Additional Support for Learning Act in Scotland
    The National Deaf Children's Society has recently funded a piece of research at the University of Edinburgh to investigate the impact of the Education (Additional Support for Learning) Scotland Act 2004 on deaf education. Professor Sheila Riddell, of the Centre for Research on Education, Inclusion and Diversity (CREID), is leading this research which will focus particularly on the changes teachers, administrators and parents have experienced since the new legislation came into effect. NDCS reports the findings as follows:

    The research, which can be read at, shows that the Additional Support for Learning Act 2004 is failing to meet the needs of all deaf children, with 26% of deaf children identified as having no form of educational support plan in place to help them achieve their potential at school. The majority of children surveyed had a severe to profound hearing loss, which makes the findings even more alarming. Factors such as a lack of awareness among teachers about the needs of deaf children, and that many parents have little understanding of their rights within the ASL Act are identified by the research team as having an impact on deaf children accessing the school curriculum.

  5. Continuing the Achievement of Deaf Pupils in Scotland research
    This project will examine the achievements of deaf pupils in Scotland, making use of a longitudinal database which has detailed information about every deaf pupil from 2000 – 2005. The project will attempt to answer questions about
    1. factors leading to success for deaf pupils
    2. patterns of early support for deaf pupils in education which lead to success in later years
    3. how the academic, social, and vocational outcomes for deaf children compare to the wider population of children/school leavers.

    The research will follow the progress of pupils in the original ADPS database, involving questionnaires to deaf young people who have now left school. There will be close collaboration with teachers of deaf children who will continue to be partners in collecting information about deaf pupils who are still at school. For more information, visit the project website.

    They will work with a Reference Group, which will have wide-ranging representation. Funding: The Nuffield Foundation £143,000 for two years from February 2010. Email Rachel O’Neill for further details.

  6. Investigating language modification as a curriculum access strategy
    This UK-wide research aims to find out from teachers, Communication Support Workers and deaf pupils / students what their views are about the use of modified texts in mainstream settings. The research question is: In what ways are texts modified for deaf learners, and what views do deaf mainstreamed deaf learners and their teachers have about modified texts?

    Phase 1 of the research from January – July 2010: The information leaflet about the first phase of the research and the agreement to participate form can be downloaded below.

    Collection and analysis of texts which have been modified and the originals with a form about the educational context. This form can be downloaded below.

    Download First phase information leaflet
    Download Modified texts

    We are hoping to collect modified texts from at least 50 different teachers and support workers from across the UK. Please send in texts before 30.4.2010.

    Later phases of the research in 2011 will include a survey for deaf pupils and students in the 14 – 21 age group and focus groups for teachers of deaf children, CSWs and FE tutors of deaf students. Further information will be reported here and in the BATOD magazine. Please contact Rachel O’Neill if you would like to be a participant in any phase of the research.