The interpretation of line of regard by prelingually deaf children

C Scott, P A Russell, C D Gray, J A Hosie, N Hunter

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11 Citations (Scopus)


The ability of 5- to 12-year-old deaf children to utilise and interpret another person's visual line of regard (where the eyes are looking) was studied in four experiments using cartoon faces. The children had little difficulty in determining whether or not a face was looking directly at them. They had more difficulty, however, with more complex tasks requiring them to infer. mental states of desire and intention from line of regard and to ignore line of regard when it was inappropriate to attend to this are. Deaf children raised ill a hearing environment appear to have more difficulty with these more complex tasks than hearing children. The results are discussed in terms of the special difficulties facing some deaf children in the development of skills involving utilisation of line of regard and the implications for the development of joint attentional behaviour; theory of mind and dyadic social interaction in deaf and hearing children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)412-426
Number of pages15
JournalSocial Development
Publication statusPublished - 1999


  • deafness
  • joint attention
  • line of regard
  • theory of mind
  • MIND


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