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Home > Clerc Center > Information and Resources > Cochlear Implant Education Center > About the Cochlear Implant Education Center

About the Cochlear Implant Education Center

About Us

Center established:
September, 2000

Children and youths with cochlear implants, birth through high school

Kendall Demonstration Elementary School

Debra Nussbaum 202-651-5638 (V/TTY) Debra.Nussbaum@gallaudet.edu

1. What is the Cochlear Implant Education Center (CIEC)?
The Cochlear Implant Education Center is a unit of the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center at Gallaudet University. The Center investigates, evaluates, and disseminates effective practices related to cochlear implant technology and its role in the education and lives of deaf children from birth through high school. The Center does not provide cochlear implant surgical services.

2. Who coordinates the Center?
Debra Nussbaum, an audiologist certified by the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association on the Clerc Center staff for the past 27 years will serve as the Center Coordinator. She has extensive experience designing and implementing programming related to auditory and speech skills for deaf students who use sign language.

3. What is the focus of the Center?

  • On-site services: The Center staff
    • investigates effective educational practices and studies outcomes for students with cochlear implants enrolled at Kendall Demonstration Elementary School and the Model Secondary School for the Deaf
    • helps design classrooms and support services to address the individual needs of each student with an implant
    • monitors, adjusts, and troubleshoots cochlear implants on-site
    • provides family education and staff development programs
  • Nationwide outreach: The Center networks with educational programs and hospital based implant centers throughout the nation to identify and share effective practices related to the education of children with implants.
  • Collaboration with Gallaudet University: The Center works closely with units throughout Gallaudet University in the areas of research and training of University students.

4. What is our educational philosophy for students with cochlear implants?
We address issues related to educational programming for children with cochlear implants, including development and use of both spoken language and signed language. The philosophy of the Clerc Center Demonstration Schools is to provide a "linguistically-rich environment for the acquisition of American Sign Language and English..."

Cochlear implant technology provides deaf children with increased access to sound. An important focus for students with implants is to use this access to develop and use spoken English. We also believe that students with cochlear implants should be provided with an equal opportunity to develop American Sign Language skills and knowledge of Deaf culture.

We focus on facilitating the overall development of students with cochlear implants. As with all deaf students, our goal for students with cochlear implants is to ensure full access to language to support high levels of literacy development and access to a challenging educational curriculum.

5. What services are offered to students with cochlear implants at the Demonstration Schools of the Clerc Center?
Our services for students with cochlear implants is evolving based on the enrollment and identified needs of students. Students with cochlear implants are integrated into already existing educational teams. Individual services are determined through the Individualized Family Service Program (IFSP)/ Individualized Educational Program (IEP) process.

6. Who serves Gallaudet University students with cochlear implants or students from off campus?
The Center focuses on the unique educational needs of young children and adolescents with implants. Direct services to students with cochlear implants at the university level are available through various units on campus, including the Hearing and Speech Center and the Mental Health Center. These centers also provide services for persons with cochlear implants in the Metropolitan D.C. community. For further information, contact the Hearing and Speech Center at 202-651-5328 or the Mental Health Center at 202-651-6080.

For further information contact:
Debra Nussbaum
Cochlear Implant Education Center Coordinator
Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center
Gallaudet University
800 Florida Ave. NE
Washington, DC 20002
E-mail: Debra.Nussbaum@gallaudet.edu