The effectiveness of assertiveness training on perceived communication handicap in hearing impaired individuals

Date of Award

Spring 2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Audiology (AuD)


School of Communication

First Advisor

Melinda F. Bryan


The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of assertiveness training on perceived communication handicap in hearing impaired adults. Twenty new hearing aid users served as the participants for this study. Half of the participants served as the control group and received no further counseling other than a typical hearing aid orientation. The other half served as the experimental group and received assertiveness training in addition to their hearing aid orientation. Each participant completed the Communication Profile for the Hearing Impaired (CPHI) at baseline (i.e., before training, if applicable) and one later (i.e., post-training, if applicable). CPHI scores were calculated using the CPHI scoring software. Means and standard deviations of the four dimensions (Communication Performance, Communication Environment, Communication Strategies, Personal Adjustment) of the CPHI were calculated for each group at baseline and post-fitting. The results suggested improvement in perceived communication handicap post-testing versus baseline CPHI scores for all participants. Specifically, pre- and post-measures showed a significant effect for the Communication Performance, Communication Strategies, and Personal Adjustment dimensions. The results further revealed similar findings for those in the control and experimental groups; however, results for group approached significance, possibly indicating the likelihood of reaching significance with more participants. It was concluded the use of hearing aids decreased participants perceived communication handicap; however, given the limited amount of participants, assertiveness training did not contribute to the reduction of perceived handicap. Clinical applications/implications are discussed.