The present paper examines scholarly work in the field of early intervention (EI) for deaf and hard of hearing (d/hh) children and their families regarding the modality debate and the important components of EI services, and then presents the findings of a qualitative study on parent experiences within the Kentucky EI system First Steps. The researcher sought to understand what role the modality debate plays in EI services as well as factors that impact parental decision-making. The primary research question that emerged from initial research and served as the guiding question throughout subsequent investigation is as follows: is the First Steps system and it’s service providers meeting the needs of d/hh children and their families in Kentucky?

Semester/Year of Award

Spring 5-12-2015


Kimberly J. Hale

Mentor Department Affiliation

American Sign Language and Interpreter Education

Access Options

Restricted Access Thesis

Document Type

Bachelor Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars

Degree Level



American Sign Language and Interpreter Education

IRB Approval Number (if applicable)