This study explored possible associations of social maturity, executive function (EF), self-efficacy, and communication variables among deaf university students, both cochlear implant (CI) users and nonusers. Previous studies have demonstrated differences between deaf and hearing children and young adults in EF and EF-related social and cognitive functioning. EF differences also have been demonstrated between hearing children and deaf children who use CIs. Long-term influences of cochlear implantation in the social domain largely have not been explored, but were examined in the present study in terms of social maturity, as it might be related to EF and communication variables. Replicating and extending recent findings, social maturity was found to be related to somewhat different aspects of EF in CI users, deaf nonusers, and hearing students, but unrelated to hearing status, CI use, or deaf students’ use of sign language versus spoken language. Self-efficacy proved a predictor of self-reported socially mature and immature behaviours for all groups. Individuals’ beliefs about their parents’ views of such behaviours was a potent predictor of behaviours for deaf CI users and those deaf students who reported sign language as their best form of communication.
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- cochlear implants
- Hearing loss
- social maturity
- social-emotional functioning