Characteristics of Special Needs– You will choose disabilities from the list below. You will list the characteristics, possible causes, and educational strategies for the specific disability you chose. Please find one short (1 - 3 minute) video describing the disability. You are expected to cite where you found the information.

Deafness and Hearing Loss-

Deafness is defined as a hearing impairment that is so severe that the child is impaired in processing linguistic information through hearing, with or without amplification. A child with hearing loss can generally respond to auditory stimuli, including speech.


  • Difficulty following verbal directions
  • Difficulty with oral expression
  • Some difficulties with social/emotional or interpersonal skills
  • Will often have a degree of language delay
  • Often follows and rarely leads
  • Will usually exhibit some form of articulation difficulty
  • Can become easily frustrated if their needs are not met which may lead to some behavioral difficulties

Possible Causes:

  • Hearing disorders can be caused by genetic or hereditary factors, infections, developmental abnormalities, or environmental/traumatic factors.

Educational Strategies:

  • regular speech, language, and auditory training from a specialist
  • the use of amplification systems
  • services of an interpreter for those students who use one or more visual communication modes
  • favorable seating in the class to facilitate speechreading
  • captioned films/videos
  • the assistance of a notetaker who takes written notes so that the student with a hearing loss can fully attend to instruction
  • instruction for the teacher and peers in alternate communication methods such as sign language
  • assistive technology
  • Use visual approaches whenever possible



Hearing Impairments- Project IDEAL. (n.d.). (2016) Retrieved from
Russo, J. (2016, April 22). Characteristics of Hearing Impairment and Deafness in Children. Retrieved November 01, 2016, from

Visual Impairment-

Intellectual Disabilities-

Traumatic Brain Injury-




Bipolar/manic depressive illness:

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)-

Oppositional Defiant Disorder-

Selective Mutism:

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder/Attention Deficit Disorder

Tourette Syndrome-

Auditory Processing Disorder-

Autism/Asperger’s Syndrome/Rett Syndrome -

Communication Disorders:

Cerebral Palsy-


Multiple Sclerosis-

Muscular Dystrophy -

Spina Bifida -