Mental Health and Social Emotional Development

This section of Info to Go includes resources focusing on mental health, wellness, and social emotional development in children and adolescents who are deaf and hard of hearing. 

Mental Health and Wellness

Clerc Center Resources

Mental Health Services for People Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

List maintained by the Clerc Center in Info to Go: National Lists and Directories. This list assists in locating mental health services for people who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Gallaudet University Resources

Mental Health Services for Deaf People: A Resource Directory, 5th Edition (updated 2017)

The Mental Health Services For Deaf Persons: A Resource Directory is a resource for mental health professionals and deaf consumers. It contains a comprehensive listing of programs that provide mental health services to deaf individuals across the United States and Canada.  

Stakeholder Resources

American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association (ADARA)

National organization bringing together professionals from vocational rehabilitation, mental health, chemical health, education, interpreting, and related fields to share best practices in working with individuals who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing, to address policy and program concerns, and to network. They publish Journal of the American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association.

National Association of the Deaf (NAD)

Mental Health Services

Position Statement on Mental Health Services for People who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Position Statement on Mental Health Services for Deaf Children

Culturally Affirmative and Linguistically Accessible Mental Health Services

National Coalition on Mental Health and Deaf Individuals (NCMHDI)

Non-profit corporation established in 2008 to provide leadership and support in the areas of public mental health for deaf and hard of hearing individuals. In addition, the coalition offers technical assistance to state mental health departments who are interested in developing or modifying mental health systems of care.

National Child Traumatic Stress Network: Facts on Trauma in Deaf Children (2004)

Summary of 2004 project funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services exploring trauma and deaf children.

Social Emotional Development

Clerc Center Resources

Sharing Power: Practical Strategies for Power Struggles with Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students (webcast, 2011)

Robert Whitaker, a nationally certified school psychologist with more than 15 years of experience working with children who are deaf and hard of hearing in educational settings, provides practical solutions for managing power struggles.

Odyssey: New Directions in Deaf Education
(Annual magazine published by the Clerc Center)

Success Through Dancing: Teaching Skills and Awakening Young Souls (2017)

Lining Up Strategies: Video Modeling with Students Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (2015, Odyssey Extra)

The Power of Expectations: Two Stories (2014)

Raising Courtney Just Like Her Sisters: Forging High Expectations (2014)

Meeting High Expectations: Healthy Thinking, Resiliency, and Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children (2014)

Fostering Skills in Self Advocacy: A Key to Access in School and Beyond (2013) 

The Great Self-Advocacy Wave: Mom Teaches Most Important Lesson-Explain (2013)

Gallaudet University Resources

VL2 Research Brief #11 Raising the Whole Deaf Child 

Research brief, by Drs. Linda Lytle and Gina Oliva, reviewing the research on social-emotional development in deaf and hard of hearing students from birth to 12th grade. The brief includes recommendations for parents and educators on how to support the deaf child's social and emotional development in order to lay the foundations for future social, academic, and life success.

Stakeholder Resources

Self-Advocacy and Accommodations for Students with Hearing Loss (Supporting Success for Children with Hearing Loss)

A discussion of and links to resources related to assessment and facilitation of self-advocacy skills for students who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Self Identity and Hearing Loss 

Supporting evidence and practices to support the identity development of students who are deaf and hard of hearing.

Social Issues and Your Child 

Resources directed to families related to supporting their child's social development.

Addressing Self Esteem and Issues of Fitting In 

Activities and resources to support deaf and hard of hearing students in fitting in to their home, community and school environment.

Social Communication: Pragmatics 

Evidence and resources to guide pragmatic language development, which is integral to a child's social communication.


Educating Deaf Learners: Creating a Global Evidence Base (2015)

Chapter 12: Social Cognition for Learning Chapter exploring how being deaf influences early interaction and language and what social-cognitive delays might mean for academic learning.

Chapter 13; Social Relations of Deaf Learners Chapter looking at what research tells us about the challenges that face DHH students in general and the challenges they must manage at school in order to live a happy life. 

Chapter 15: Stress Among Children Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Their Families Chapter reviewing the everyday stressors in various domains encountered by children who are deaf and hard of hearing, and their parents. 

Chapter 16: The Role of the Environment in Children's Emotion Socialization Chapter describing the extent to which the main areas of emotional and social competence in DHH children and adolescents are on par with their hearing peers, to what extent these areas seem to develop differently.

Social Competence of Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Children, Professional Perspectives on Deafness: Evidence and Applications (2015)

Book outlining the social development of deaf and hard of hearing children from early childhood through adolescence. Provided is a practical guide for assessing the social competence of deaf and hard of hearing children and adolescents as well as strategies and programs that parents and professionals can use to promote social competence.

Secrets for Deaf and Hearing Sibling Success: Giving Them an Early Start for a Lifetime Together (NCHAM)

E-Book Chapter from NCHAM (National Center on Hearing Assessment and Management) discussing the experiences of one family in regard to facilitating sibling relationships between deaf (or hard of hearing) and hearing siblings.

Turning the Tide: Making Life Better for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Schoolchildren (2014)

Book presenting the findings of a qualitative study of deaf and hard of hearing students who attended mainstream schools. Many issues are addressed, including the difficulties of finding friends and social access. 

Raising and Educating Deaf Children: eBulletins
(Associated with the Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, Oxford UP)

Socio-emotional Assessment of Deaf Children (2015)

Last revised November 2017

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