Explaining the ways in which parents of children

Explaining the ways in which parents of children
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Explaining the ways in which parents of children
with hearing impairments access
counseling services in Zimbabwe
by
John Charema
2004
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Explaining the ways in which parents of children
with hearing impairments access counseling services
in Zimbabwe
by
John Charema
Submitted as fulfillment for the degree of
PHILOSOPHIAE DOCTOR
(LEARNING SUPPORT, GUIDANCE & COUNSELING)
in the
FACULTY OF EDUCATION
of the
UNIVERSITY OF PRETORIA
PROMOTER:
Prof. Dr. Irma Eloff
2004
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
THIS THESIS IS DEDICATED TO:
my children Louis, Linette and Larry
and my wife Gloria
for the support they gave me throughout the study.
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to Professor Irma Eloff who directed and
supervised this study. The success of this study lies in her dedication, unfailing support and
encouragement. Lecturers in the department of Educational Psychology at the University of
Pretoria must be acknowledged for their useful contributions towards this study during the
proposal stage. My sincere thanks go to Mr. Lance Cocker who worked tirelessly on the
language editing. Mrs. Adrie van Dyk is greatly thanked for doing all the technical editing
and for her support throughout the study. I thank Dr. Forcheh who helped with the statistics
of this study.
I wish to thank all headmasters of Special Schools in Zimbabwe, Directors of Counseling
Organizations and lecturers in the department of Special Education at the University of
Zimbabwe for their cooperation. Lastly I would like to thank my dear wife Gloria and my
children Louis, Larry and Linette, for their moral support and encouragement during the
course of this study.
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
DECLARATION OF ORIGINALITY
I, JOHN CHAREMA (Student number 2321809) declare that
“Explaining the ways in which parents of children with hearing impairments access
counseling services in Zimbabwe”
Is my own work and that all the sources that I have used or quoted have been indicated and
acknowledged by means of complete references.
Signature: ______________________
Date: _____________________
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
ABSTRACT & KEYWORDS
The purpose of this study was to explain the ways in which parents of children with hearing
impairments access counseling services. In order to focus attention on these issues, a
research question and objectives were formulated: In what ways did parents of children
with hearing impairments in Zimbabwe access counseling services during the period 1999
to 2000? Five distinct but related major issues, in relation to parents of children with
hearing impairments accessing counseling services in Zimbabwe during the period 1999 to
2000 emerged.
This came from observation of practice, personal experiences, and
discussions with parents. The objectives of the study were thus formulated as follows:
•
to find out who counseled parents of children with hearing impairments.
•
to investigate whether parents who received or did not receive counseling were
aware of organizations that offered guidance and counseling.
•
to find out parents’ perceptions on whether or not counseling helped them to accept
and cope with their children.
•
to establish the qualifications of the counselors who counseled parents of children
with hearing impairments.
•
to explore recommendations by parents on ways in which counseling can be made
more accessible in Zimbabwe.
A pilot study was conducted in which two questionnaires that covered the research question
and the five objectives were constructed and refined. Subsequently a survey was carried out
on a sample of 300 parents of children with hearing impairments and 28 counseling service
organizations. The questionnaires sought to find out: who counseled parents of children
with hearing impairments, their views about the counseling they received, whether they
were able to accept and cope with their children after counseling and their views on how
counseling could be made more accessible. The questionnaire to service organizations
sought to establish the qualifications of their counselors, the needs of parents of children
with hearing impairments and their views on what they thought could be done to help
parents access counseling services. Female and male parents were compared in terms of
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
their sources of counseling, acceptance and coping with children of different genders and
different age groups. Quantitative data on organizations and parents’ responses were
analyzed using descriptive statistics. Qualitative analysis was used to analyze data from
open-ended questions collected from parents of children with hearing impairments.
Results from the study indicate that the majority of the parents received counseling from
special schools, followed by individuals, then hospitals, churches, registered counseling
organizations and friends. Slightly more than half of the parents were aware of registered
organizations that offer counseling services. Most parents believed that counseling helped
them and were able to cope with their children after counseling. The majority of the
counselors who counseled parents of children with hearing impairments were not qualified.
Most parents indicated that they faced difficulties in communication, financial constraints,
societal attitude, lack of transport and lack of skills to teach children basic living skills.
Parents suggested the use of parent support groups, workshops and advertisements as means
of making counseling services more accessible.
Key words
Access to counseling
Children with hearing impairments
Counseling in Zimbabwe
Counseling organizations
Hearing impairments
Parents of children with hearing impairments
Support for parents
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Page
CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION, PROBLEM STATEMENT AND
RESEARCH DESIGN
1.1
INTRODUCTION, PROBLEM STATEMENT AND
RESEARCH DESIGN
1
1.2
RESEARCH QUESTION
5
1.3
OBJECTIVES OF THE RESEARCH
5
1.4
PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
5
1.5
THEORETICAL/CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK
6
1.6
DEFINITION OF KEY CONCEPTS
7
1.6.1
COUNSELING
8
1.6.2
PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENT
8
1.6.3
HEARING IMPAIRMENT
9
1.6.4
SERVICES IN SPECIAL EDUCATION
9
1.6.5
SCHOOL COUNSELORS
10
1.6.6
COUNSELING ORGANIZATIONS
11
1.6.7
CHURCHES
11
1.6.8
SOCIAL SERVICES
12
1.7
PARADIGM FOR THE STUDY
12
1.8
ASSUMPTIONS OF THE STUDY
13
1.9
LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
14
1.10
METHODOLOGY OF THE STUDY
14
Page
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
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1.11
POPULATION
15
1.12
SAMPLE (n = 300)
15
1.13
VARIABLES
16
1.14
PROCEDURE
16
1.15
INSTRUMENT
18
1.16
DESCRIPTION OF THE MEASUREMENT TECHNIQUES
18
1.17
DEVELOPMENT OF THE INSTRUMENT
19
1.18
SCORING OF THE SCALE
21
1.19
VALIDITY AND RELIABILITY OF INSTRUMENT
21
1.20
METHODS OF DATA ANALYSIS
23
1.20.1
QUANTITATIVE DATA
23
1.20.2
QUALITATIVE DATA
23
1.21
ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS IN RESEARCH
24
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Page
CHAPTER 2
THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK & LITERATURE REVIEW
2.1
INTRODUCTION
26
2.2
COUNSELING
26
2.3
HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVES
27
2.3.1
OUR HERITAGE FROM THE PAST
27
2.3.2
VOCATIONAL COUNSELING
30
2.4
THEORIES OF COUNSELING
33
2.4.1
PSYCHOANALYTIC THEORY
34
2.4.2
THE INDIVIDUAL PSYCHOLOGY THEORY
35
2.4.3
CLIENT-CENTERED THERAPY
37
2.4.4
BEHAVIORAL THEORY
37
2.4.5
RATIONAL EMOTIVE THERAPY (RET)
38
2.4.6
REALITY THERAPY
39
2.4.7
TRANSACTIONAL ANALYSIS (TA)
40
2.4.8
GESTALT COUNSELING
41
2.4.9
INTEGRATED THEORY
41
2.4.10
ECLECTIC COUNSELING
42
2.5
APPLICATION OF THEORIES IN COUNSELING
43
2.6
GROUPS AND COUNSELING
44
2.6.1
GROUP COUNELING
45
2.6.2
GROUP GUIDANCE
46
2.6.3
GROUP THERAPY
46
2.6.4
T-GROUPS
46
2.6.5
SENSITIVITY GROUPS
47
2.6.6
ENCOUNTER GROUPS
47
2.6.7
MINI-GROUPS
48
2.6.8
GROUP PROCESS AND GROUP DYNAMICS
48
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Page
2.6.9
IN-GROUP AND OUT-GROUP
48
2.6.10
SOCIAL NETWORKS
49
2.6.11
TRADITIONAL VERSUS WESTERN COUNSELING
49
2.6.12
TRADITIONAL COUNSELING
49
2.6.13
WESTERN COUNSELING
51
2.7
COUNSELING PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING
IMPAIRMENTS
53
2.7.1
HOW PARENTS ACCESS COUNSELING SERVICES
55
2.7.2
ZIMBABWE IN THE PERIOD 1999 TO 2000
58
2.7.3
COUNSELING PARENTS OF CHLDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS IN
59
ZIMBABWE
2.8
COUNSELING ORGANIZATIONS IN ZIMBABWE
60
2.9
MARRIAGE AND FAMILY COUNSELING
62
2.10
PASTORAL COUNSELING
63
2.11
EMPLOYMENT COUNSELING
64
2.12
REHABILITATION COUNSELING
64
2.13
A CRITIQUE OF COUNSELING ORGANIZATIONS
65
2.14
SUMMARY
66
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Page
CHAPTER 3
METHODOLOGY OF THE STUDY
3.1
INTRODUCTION
67
3.1.1
RESEARCH DESIGN: SURVEY
67
3.2
THE SURVEY METHOD
69
3.2.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
69
3.2.2
CONSEQUENCES
70
3.3
INTERVIEWS
70
3.3.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
70
3.3.2
CONSEQUENCES
71
3.4
POPULATION
71
3.5
SAMPLE (n = 300)
72
3.5.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
73
3.5.2
CONSEQUENCES
73
3.6
VARIABLES
73
3.7
PROCEDURE
74
3.7.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
75
3.7.2
CONSEQUENCES
75
3.8
INSTRUMENT
75
3.8.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
77
3.8.2
CONSEQUENCES
77
3.9
DESCRIPTION OF THE MEASUREMENT TECHNIQUES
77
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Page
3.10
DEVELOPMENT OF THE INSTRUMENT
78
3.10.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
81
3.10.2
CONSEQUENCES
81
3.11
SCORING OF THE SCALE
82
3.11.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
82
3.11.2
CONSEQUENCES
82
3.12
VALIDITY AND RELIABILITY OF INSTRUMENT
83
3.12.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
84
3.13
METHODS OF DATA ANALYSIS
85
3.13.1
QUANTITATIVE DATA
85
3.13.2
RATIONALE AND CONSEQUENCES
85
3.12.3
QUALITATIVE DATA
86
3.13.4
RATIONALE AND CONSEQUENCES
86
3.13.5
ETHICAL STRATEGIES IN RESEARCH
86
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Page
CHAPTER 4
PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
ACCESSING COUNSELING SERVICES: RESEARCH RESULTS
4.1
INTRODUCTION
88
4.2
PRESENTATION AND INTERPRETATION OF RESULTS
– AN OVERVIEW
88
4.3
QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS ON THE QUESTIONNAIRE TO
PARENTS
89
4.3.1
BIOGRAPHICAL DETAILS OF PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING
89
IMPAIRMENTS AND OF THEIR CHILDREN
4.3.2
QUANTITATIVE RESULTS ON COUNSELING
95
4.3.3
NEGATIVELY PHRASED ITEMS
97
4.4
CORRELATION BETWEEN THE GENDER OF PARENTS
AND WHERE THEY OBTAINED COUNSELING, WHAT THEY
SAY ABOUT COPING WITH THE CHILD WITH A HEARING
IMPAIRMENT, AGE OF CHILDREN AND WHAT PARENTS
SAY ABOUT COPING
124
4.5
DEGREE OF CONSISTENCY BETWEEN POSITIVE AND
NEGATIVELY PHRASED ITEMS
132
4.6
QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS ON THE OPEN-ENDED
QUESTIONNAIRE TO PARENTS
140
4.7
INTERPRETATION OF QUALITATIVE RESULTS ON THE
ENDED QUESTIONNAIRE TO PARENTS
144
4.8
QUANTITATIVE DATA ON THE QUESTIONNAIRE TO
SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
147
4.9
QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS ON THE OPEN-ENDED
QUESTIONNAIRE TO SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
153
4.10
SYNOPSIS ON THE RESULTS FROM THE SERVICE
ORGANIZATIONS
155
4.11
SUMMARY OF THE CHAPTER
157
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Page
CHAPTER 5
DISCUSSION OF RESULTS
5.1
INTRODUCTION
158
5.2
GENDERS OF PARTICIPANTS IN THE STUDY
158
5.3
GENDER OF PARTICIPANTS’ CHILDREN
159
5.4
NATURE OF HEARING LOSS
159
5.5
AGES OF PARTICIPANTS’ CHILDREN
160
5.6
PARTICIPANTS WHO RECEIVED AND THOSE WHO DID
NOT RECEIVE COUNSELING
160
5.7
PARTICIPANTS’ SOURCES OF COUNSELING
161
5.8
THE NEED FOR COUNSELING AND ITS EFFECT ON
PARENTS ACCEPTING AND COPING WITH THEIR
CHILDREN WHO HAVE HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
164
5.9
UNDERSTANDING COUNSELING, THE NEEDS OF THE
CHILD, TAKING RESPONSIBILITY AND PLANNING THE
FUTURE OF THE CHILD
166
5.10
CORRELATION OF RESULTS BY GENDER OF PARENTS
168
5.11
QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSE CONSISTENCY
170
5.12
QUALITATIVE RESULTS OF PARENTS
170
5.13
QUANTITATIVE RESULTS ON SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
176
5.14
CHAPTER SUMMARY
178
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Page
CHAPTER 6
CONCLUSIVE FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
6.1
INTRODUCTION
180
6.2
OBJECTIVES AND FINDINGS
181
6.3
ASSUMPTIONS AND FINDINGS OF THE STUDY
183
6.4
MAJOR CHALLENGES ARISING FROM THE STUDY AND
SUGGESTIONS TO ADDRESS THEM
188
6.5
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH
190
6.6
CONCLUDING REMARKS
190
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REFERENCES
193
APPENDICES
210
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
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LIST OF FIGURES
Page
FIGURE 1.14.1
The geographic demarcation of the Zimbabwean towns
included in the study
17
FIGURE 4.3.1.1
(Item i) Gender of participants in the study
89
FIGURE 4.3.1.2
(Item ii) Gender of children of participants in the study
91
FIGURE 4.3.1.3
(Item iii) My child was born deaf
92
FIGURE 4.3.1.4
(Item iv) My child became deaf later
93
FIGURE 4.3.1.5
(Item v) How old is your child?
94
FIGURE 4.3.2.1
(Item vi) Did you receive any counseling at all?
95
FIGURE 4.3.2.2
Participants’ sources of counseling
96
FIGURE 4.3.8.1
(Item 1) Parents of children with hearing impairments do not
need counseling
101
FIGURE 4.3.8.2
(Item 2) Counseling is totally different from advice
102
FIGURE 4.3.8.3
(Item 3) I am not aware of any organization that offers
counseling in Zimbabwe
103
FIGURE 4.3.8.4
(Item 4) Counseling did not help us to understand the needs
of our child
104
FIGURE 4.3.8.5
(Item 5) Counseling does not help parents to accept the idea of
having a hearing impaired child in the family
105
FIGURE 4.3.8.6
(Item 6) Children who are hearing impaired should be looked
after by the Social Welfare
105
FIGURE 4.3.8.7
(Item 7) Counseling helped me to plan the future of my child
106
FIGURE 4.3.8.8
(Item 8) We do not allow our child to play with other children
in our community because they may not treat him well
107
FIGURE 4.3.8.9
(Item 9) My child does not relate well and interact effectively
with other members of the family
108
FIGURE 4.3.8.10
(Item 10) Most people who counseled us told us what to do
109
FIGURE 4.3.8.11
(Item 11) Counseling is essential for parents of children with
hearing impairments
110
FIGURE 4.3.8.12
(Item 12) The counseling we received did not help us to cope
with the child at all
111
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FIGURE 4.3.8.13
(Item 13) I am aware of organizations that offer counseling in
Zimbabwe
111
FIGURE 4.3.8.14
(Item 14) My child fits well and interacts effectively with
family members
112
FIGURE 4.3.8.15
(Item 15) It is almost impossible to plan the future of a child
who is hearing impaired
113
FIGURE 4.3.8.16
(Item 16) Most counselors did not give us any guidance at all
114
FIGURE 4.3.8.17
(Item 17) Without counseling one cannot fully accept having
a child with hearing impairment in the family
115
FIGURE 4.3.8.18
(Item 18) With or without help from other organizations, it is
parents’ responsibility to fully cater for their children who are
hearing impaired
116
FIGURE 4.3.8.19
(Item 19) We allow our child to make friends and play
with other children in our neighborhood
117
FIGURE 4.3.8.20
(Item 20) The problem with counseling is that one is not
provided with answers
118
FIGURE 4.3.8.21
Parents can do equally well for their child without guidance
and counseling
119
FIGURE 4.3.8.22
(Item 22) Counseling really helped us to understand the child
119
FIGURE 4.3.8.23
(Item 23) Counselors also referred me to other professions
for further help
120
FIGURE 4.3.8.24
(Item 24) Counseling helped us to cope with our child who
is hearing impaired
121
FIGURE 4.3.8.25
(Item 25) Guidance and counseling are important for both
parents and the child
122
FIGURE 4.3.8.26
(Item 26) It is difficult to separate counseling from advice
123
FIGURE 4.6.1
Number of parents who responded to items 1-6
141
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LIST OF TABLES
Page
TABLE 3.6.1
Inclusions and exclusions
74
TABLE 3.10.1
Item analysis
80
TABLE 4.3.3.1(a) Negatively phrased items
98
TABLE 4.3.3.1(b) Positively phrased items
99
TABLE 4.2.1
First source of counseling – A1 Gender of parents cross
tabulation
125
TABLE 4.4.2
Second source of counseling – A2 Gender of parents
126
TABLE 4.4.3
Third source of counseling – A3 Gender of parents
127
TABLE 4.4.4
(Item 1) Although we received guidance and counseling, we
still cannot cope with the child – A5 Gender of parents
128
TABLE 4.4.5
(Item 2) Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is
hearing impaired – A5 Gender of children
129
TABLE 4.4.6
(Item 3) The counseling we received did not help us to cope
with the child at all – A6 Age of children
130
TABLE 4.5.1
Degree of consistency between positive and negatively phrased
items
132
TABLE 4.5.2
Degree of consistency between positive and negatively phrased
items percentage
133
TABLE 4.5.3
(Item 1-11) The need for counseling of parents of children
with hearing impairments
134
TABLE 4.5.4
(Item 2-26) Counseling is totally different from advice
135
TABLE 4.5.5
(Item 3-13) Awareness of any organization that offers
counseling in Zimbabwe
135
TABLE 4.5.6
(Item 4-22) Counseling and understanding the needs of our child
135
TABLE 4.5.7
(Item 5-17) Counseling and acceptance of the idea of having
a hearing impaired child in the family
136
TABLE 4.5.8
(Item 6-18) Who should look after children who are hearing
impaired?
136
TABLE 4.5.9
(Item 7-15) Planning for the future of my child
137
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Page
TABLE 4.5.10
(Item 8-19) Allowing my child to play with other children in
our community
137
TABLE 4.5.11
(Item 9-14) Child’s relation and interaction with other
members of the family
137
TABLE 4.5.12
(Item 10-20) Most people who counseled us told us what to do
138
TABLE 4.5.13
(Item 12-26) Utility of the counseling received
138
TABLE 4.5.14
(Item 16-23) Assistance vs Referral to other professionals
for further help
139
TABLE 4.5.15
(Item 21-25) Importance of guidance and counseling to parents
139
TABLE 4.5.16
Summary of item consistency by percentage
139
TABLE 4.6.2
Five major difficulties parents experienced in raising their
children with hearing impairments
142
TABLE 4.6.3
Organizations and/or Individuals that counseled the parents
142
TABLE 4.6.4
Whether or not parents received counseling and how it helped
them if they received it
142
TABLE 4.6.5
Whether or not parents thought the counseling they received
helped them to cope with their child. If they thought it helped,
their views on how it helped were sought
143
TABLE 4.6.6
Parents’ views on what could be done to make counseling
more accessible to parents
143
TABLE 4.6.7
How parents could be helped more through guidance and
counseling
144
TABLE 4.8.1
Counseling Service Organizations
147
TABLE 4.8.2
Type of service organizations
148
TABLE 4.8.3
Have you counseled parents of children with disabilities?
148
TABLE 4.8.4
Have you counseled parents of deaf children?
148
TABLE 4.8.5
Parents counseled
149
TABLE 4.8.6
Have you qualified counselors?
149
TABLE 4.8.7
No. of Uncertified Counselors
149
TABLE 4.8.8
No. of counselors with certificate level
150
TABLE 4.8.9
No. of counselors with diploma level
150
TABLE 4.8.10
No. of counselors with degree level
151
TABLE 4.8.11
No. of parents counseled per year
151
TABLE 4.8.12
Responses of organizations
151
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Page
TABLE 4.9.1
What organizations considered being the major problems of
parents of children with hearing impairments
153
TABLE 4.9.2
What organizations thought would be the most effective way
of helping parents of children with hearing impairments
154
TABLE 4.9.3
Whether parents who were counseled by organizations were
able to cope with their children or not
154
TABLE 4.9.4
Common problems often presented by parents of children with
hearing impairments
154
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
1
1.1
INTRODUCTION, PROBLEM STATEMENT
AND RESEARCH DESIGN
INTRODUCTION AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The present system of guidance and counseling by individuals and/organizations in
Zimbabwe does not seem to address the problems faced by parents of children who have
hearing impairments (Richards, 2000:147). This is evidenced by the fact that many parents
of children with hearing impairments fail to cope with the needs of their children. Richards
(1996:94) pointed out that most parents of children with disabilities are not aware of how
they can access other counseling services available in the country apart from special
schools. These parents frequently fail to access the services they require. Makoni (1996:5)
endorses the fact that counseling services in Zimbabwe are limited and not many people
know where they are situated. This lack of fit between the needs of families and the
provision of services may be accounted for in a number of ways.
Some of these
explanations concern the families while others relate to the provision of the services. Early
in the 1990s Lea and Clarke (1991:159) carried out a study in the United States of America
and found that even families who requested help from health professionals, thus seeming
eager to help themselves, often failed to attend appointments possibly due to difficulties in
traveling to specialized centres, lack of funds, lack of knowledge of what the services offer
or fear of stigmatization. It appears their expectations tend to lack a thorough understanding
of the child’s problems. It is generally the practice of these parents to come back to the
school where their children learnt, for guidance and help after failing to cope in day-to-day
life. In some cases parents dump children in special schools for years and then pitch up
during the final year of primary or secondary school (Makoni, 1996:4). Stewart (1986:113)
points out that most parents who do not receive proper guidance and counseling fail to cope
in any practical way with their hearing impaired children.
Guidance and counseling, according to Backenroth (2001:27), is of utmost importance in
order for the family to lay a good foundation in preparing and planning ahead for the future
of the child with disabilities. Therefore it is important to know how parents of children
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
with hearing impairments access counseling services. Backenroth (2001:27) goes on to
point out that counselors should collaborate with family organizations, educators and
managers in order to lay foundations for the development of competencies required in the
labor market. A study carried out by Burnett and Van Dorssen (2000:243) indicates that in
counseling, clients transfer what they have learnt to subsequent problem situations rather
than returning for further counseling each time a difficult situation arises. They also found
that parents develop lifelong skills to cope with difficult situations that are encountered
throughout the passage of life. However, depending on the quality of the counseling
service, Howard (1996:46) points out that if parents are not properly and adequately
counseled, they will continue to seek further counseling or resort to alternative means. He
attributes poor counseling to unqualified and inexperienced ‘counselors’.
Where
appropriate counseling is offered, parents are empowered to control their situations. In
their research study Blackorby and Wagner (1996:393) found that, out of 8000 youngsters
with disabilities aged 13 to 21, who were enrolled in special schools, only one third of the
children were employed. Upon investigation, it was noted that most of those children who
were employed had parents who had received guidance and counseling.
The situation in Zimbabwe is not an exception. During my 23 years of teaching and
working with both parents and children with hearing impairments, I witnessed many
children with hearing impairments who dropped out of school and others who could not get
stable jobs. Those who were employed either got part-time jobs or were in positions that
offer little opportunity for advancement. With the high unemployment rate in Zimbabwe, it
has become extremely difficult for people with disabilities to get employment particularly
if no career guidance and planning has been put in place. It would stand to reason that
counseling plays an important role in helping parents to cope, plan and prepare their
children for independent living. Another study by Frank and Sitlington (1997:49) in the
United States of America from 1985 to 1986 with high school and college students, indicate
that statistics of students with disabilities who drop out of high schools and colleges due to
lack of parental support and counseling, continue to get worse. They reported that only 8%
completed high school and earned a diploma, while the rest dropped out due to a number of
reasons such as lack of parental support, lack of counseling and lack of proper career
guidance. Intuitively I agree with Frank and Sitlington’s findings as they relate well to my
experiences in Zimbabwe working with students with hearing impairments at high school
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and at vocational level.
Students with disabilities need a lot of support from their
immediate families, family organizations and educators if they are to make it in life. The
role of parents has been reflected in a variety of parental functions, noted by (Roffey,
2001:33) as moral support, developing community school relations, future planning and
parental guidance. It is of paramount importance for parents to access counseling services
if they are to nurture, plan and support their children with hearing impairments.
Counseling empowers parents (Roffey, 2001:46) to take an active role in the education of
their children. If such parents do not access guidance and counseling services, there is
likely to be a negative effect in the lives of children with disabilities (Gartner, et al.,
1991:95).
In this study the guidance and counseling situation for parents of children with hearing
impairments during the period preceding the economic collapse in Zimbabwe will be
explored. A review of literature indicates a paucity of documented research on counseling
for parents of children with hearing impairments in Zimbabwe. Lack of research work and
empirical evidence within this sector of the educational system is regrettable, particularly in
view of the additional potential vulnerability of the parent body. The recent expansion of
guidance and counseling in the field of education, as with all other public services, has
brought with it a necessity to use the increasingly stringent funding allocations to the best
human and financial advantage. Unfortunately, counseling in special education is not a
priority and has been overshadowed by counseling in the area of HIV and AIDS that
presently tops the list. As pointed out by the World Health Organization and UNAIDS,
(1987:78), Dilley, Pies, and Helquist (1993:92), the outbreak of the AIDS epidemic in
Southern Africa, created a lot of fear, panic and uncertainty that upset medical research and
presented a great challenge. Most institutions embarked on research to find the cure for
AIDS and to counsel those already infected. For a considerable period of time, from 1986,
the focus of research was and remains on AIDS (Barnett & Blackie, 1992:46). The same
authors endorsed that in Southern Africa where resources are limited, AIDS had become
the main attraction for researchers and government officials while research in special
education continued to lag behind. According to World Health Organization and UNAIDS
(1998:29) however, the support given to children with disabilities remains a major issue of
concern worldwide.
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The availability of parental guidance and counseling services for parents who have children
with hearing impairments may impact on the long-term support given to a child with a
hearing impairment within his or her own family. Any preferential access to counseling by
one group over another must inevitably infringe equal-opportunity considerations and
limits the realization of individual potential and aspirations. According to Nystul (1999:10)
counseling helps an individual to come to terms with his/her problem by viewing it from a
different perspective and finding solutions to it. It has been noted that parents take time to
accept the idea of having a child with hearing impairments in the family and some of them
live with these feelings for the rest of their lives (Howe, 1996:369). Such long lasting
effects which are likely to cause negative attitudes towards the child with hearing
impairments, have been attributed to lack of counseling from the time the child is born
(Burn, 1992:579; McLeod, 1994:42; Luterman, 1991:64, and Thomas, 1989:87). It is
important for educationists to identify the organizations involved in guiding and counseling
parents of children with hearing impairments as well as the qualities of the services offered.
In this context counseling refers to a service provided by those who have mastered the
necessary skills to enable clients find solutions to their problems. Alongside counseling is
appropriate guidance, which is intended to enable the parent to plan and prepare for his
child’s educational and future career needs.
Most studies carried out on counseling in special education (South of the Sahara), as
pointed out by Kisanji (1990:37), McConkey and Templer (1986:78) and Ross (1988:102),
pay more attention to teachers and children and less attention to parents. This study sought
to explore the counseling situation of parents of children with hearing impairments in
Zimbabwe during the period 1999 to 2000. The research study focused on:
*
Parents of children with hearing impairments
*
Counseling service organizations
*
Individual counselors
There are five distinct but related aspects to this inquiry. The first seeks to find out whether
parents of children with hearing impairments received counseling or not. The second will
establish whether the same parents are aware of service organizations that offer counseling.
The third finds out parents’ perceptions about the counseling they received. The fourth will
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establish the qualifications of the counselors. The fifth explores parents’ views on how
counseling services could be made more accessible.
1.2
RESEARCH QUESTION
In what ways did parents of children with hearing impairments in Zimbabwe access
counseling services during the period 1999 to 2000?
1.3
OBJECTIVES OF THE RESEARCH
The objectives of the research were to:
•
investigate whether parents who received or did not receive counseling were aware
of organizations that offered guidance and counseling.
•
find out parents’ perceptions on whether or not counseling helped them to cope
with their children.
•
to establish the qualifications of the counselors who counseled parents of children
with hearing impairments.
•
explore recommendations by parents on ways in which counseling services could
be made more accessible in Zimbabwe.
1.4
PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The main purpose of the study is to explain the ways in which parents of children with
hearing impairments accessed counseling services in Zimbabwe during the period 19992000.
This research will explain whether parents of children with disabilities received any
counseling and from where the parents in question got counseling. The qualifications of
the counselors involved will also be known. The study will also explore whether the
parents who received counseling were able to cope with their children thereafter. Parents’
perceptions of the counseling they received and their views on how the counseling services
can be made more accessible will be explained.
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1.5
THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
I will use humanistic counseling to guide the conceptualization of the terms “guidance” and
“counseling”. According to Colledge (2002:75) humanistic counseling is largely associated
with the work of Carl Rogers (1952), Fritz Perls (1969), Eric Berne (1966) and William
Glasser (1968). Humanistic counseling focuses on counseling relationships, human values,
beliefs, support networks, feelings of belonging and worthiness (Colledge, 2002:82).
Emphasis is on the client’s responsibility and capacity to overcome challenges of life
through understanding of one’s problems, insight, problem solving, making of informed
choices and decisions, as well as change and growth. The study will also reflect on
psychodynamic counseling which is the work of Sigmund Freud (1938) and Alfred Adler
(1913) and behavioral counseling, which is largely associated with Krumboltz (1966).
Central to psychodynamic and behavioral counseling in relation to this study is denial of
parents, of having a child with hearing impairments in the family and the change of
behavior by parents, necessary to accept and be able to cope with the situation. Humanistic
counseling can be compared to the counseling situation in Zimbabwe, where parents of
children with hearing impairments need to access helping relationship services where they
can be accepted, understood in terms of their cultural values, beliefs and social networks
and thus be empowered to change their behavior and attitudes in order to find solutions to
their problems. Given the extensive and growing literature on the multicultural challenge
to practitioners of counseling, Sue and Sue (1990:123) and Mearns and Thorne (2000:78),
point out that the humanistic approach is multi-culturally and universally applicable since it
focuses on individuals with their different needs, values, beliefs and support systems. In
their study with Kenyan and Zimbabwean university students studying counseling at the
university of Durham in the United Kingdom, McGuiness, et al. (2001:298) found that the
humanistic approach could be applied in any culture without necessarily violating the
norms, beliefs and values of the people involved.
In the conceptualization of “parents of children with hearing impairments” I will use the
explanations by Moores (1987:187), Meadow (1980:214), Kauffman (1992:172), Hallahan
and Kauffman (1994:314), Nolan and Tucker (1981:78) and Harry (1997:98) who have
written and carried out a lot of work in the area of hearing impairment. The above authors
agree that once a family has a child with hearing impairments, the parents’ course of life
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changes.
Hardman, Drew, Egan and Wolf (1993:278) point out such parents need
professional help in terms of diagnosis, treatment, counseling and relevant schools to
approach. These parents go through shock, grief, guilt, anger and denial (Dale, 1984:59),
and counseling is likely to be their hope in dealing with their emotions in order to come to
terms with their situation. Kretschmer and Kretschmer (1978:106) pointed out that parents
take time to accept the situation and the child. Once parents do accept the situation, it
marks the starting point of progress in terms of early intervention, treatment, correction and
planning for individual educational programmes. Therefore the importance of counseling
to such parents cannot be underestimated.
The body of literature on children with hearing impairments is dominated by research on
language development, reading and deafness, (Webster, 1986:52; Meadow, 1980:67 and
Webster & Ellwood, 1987:152), integration, mainstreaming and inclusion, (Hegarty,
1987:183; Dale, 1984:37; Chorost, 1988:10; Chimedza, 1986:9 and Dean & Nettles,
1987:28), and the testing and screening of hearing impairments, (Tucker & Nolan,
1984:123; Green, 1986:17 and McCormick, 1988:245). I will use the concepts explained
by Hardman, Drew, Egan and Wolf (1993:277), Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:309),
Ogden, (1996:51) and Kauffman (1992:168) to define my understanding of children with
hearing impairments. They assert that children with hearing impairments have a hearing
loss ranging from slight to profound.
Hearing loss affects children’s educational
development in many ways, academically, socially, and psychologically due to poor
language development, concept formation and communication as a whole.
This
explanation is complemented by the work of Kirk, Gallagher and Anastasiow (1997:235),
Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1994:134), Kretschmer and Kretschmer (1978:215) and
Nolan and Tucker (1981:79).
1.6
DEFINITION OF KEY CONCEPTS
In the next section, I will provide synoptic definitions of some of the key concepts that will
be used in this study. However, each of these concepts will be further elaborated upon in
the discussion of the theoretical/conceptual framework for this study (see chapter 2).
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1.6.1
COUNSELING
Rogers (1957:16) points out that the term ‘Counseling’ is used in a number of ways: it may
be viewed as a kind of helping relationship, a repertoire of interventions or a psychological
process, in terms of its goals or relationship to psychotherapy. Capuzzi and Gross (1999:1)
define Counseling and Psychotherapy as terms that encompass a number of relationship
modalities in which the counselor or therapist needs to be proficient in facilitating the
process of counseling in order for the client to identify his/her problems, find possible
solutions to them and come to terms with reality. Nystul (1999:2) defines counseling as a
dynamic process associated with an emerging profession that involves a professionally
trained counselor assisting a client with particular concerns. He goes on to say that in the
process the counselor can use a variety of counseling strategies such as individual, group,
or family counseling to assist the client to bring about beneficial changes. Some of these
are facilitating behavior change, enhancing coping skills, promoting decision making, and
improving relationships. More definitions of ‘Counseling’ are given in chapter 2. As
pointed out by Nystul (1999:7), counseling is differentiated from psychotherapy in terms of
clients, goals treatment and settings. It is part of the helping profession, which includes
psychiatrists, psychologists, mental health counselors and school counselors. According to
Locke (1990:47) ‘psychotherapy’ is the psychological treatment of mental disorders.
However, for the purposes of this study, the terms ‘Counseling and Psychotherapy’ are
used interchangeably to mean the work carried out by professionals in government, nongovernmental and private institutions as well as those who are in private practice as
individuals or groups.
1.6.2
PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
These are parents whose children have ‘hearing impairments’.
Under normal
circumstances, as mentioned in section 1.4, these parents go through difficult times during
which they experience embarrassment and feelings of inadequacy (Tucker & Nolan,
1984:109). Such parents may differ in many ways due to their family structures, socioeconomic status and level of education. Parents of children with hearing impairments are
in different categories depending on the nature and severity of the hearing loss and how
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hearing loss has impacted on the family (McCormick, 1988:9). Some children are ‘hard of
hearing’ which means they have residual hearing. Such children can hear if whoever is
talking to them speaks loudly or shouts. As pointed out by Tucker and Nolan (1984:106)
parents of children with such hearing loss may not have had such devastating experiences
as those who have children with profound hearing loss. Children with profound hearing
loss have very little or no residual hearing at all. They only benefit with the use of hearing
aids. Such children are normally referred to as “deaf” (Webster, 1986:39). According to
Tucker and Nolan (1984:114) parents of children with moderate hearing loss react to their
children’s impairments with mixed feelings, feeling bad and yet relieved that at least its not
anything worse than hearing loss. These children benefit a lot from hearing aids and
speech programmers. The different degrees of hearing loss impact differently on parents
(Allen & Allen, 1979:83). In this study, all parents with their different situations are
simply referred to as parents of children with hearing impairments.
1.6.3
HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
McCormick (1988:3) defines hearing impairment as either part or total loss of hearing.
Webster (1990:17) takes hearing impairment to be a relatively permanent condition of
partial or total loss of hearing that necessitates the use of hearing devices. Tucker and
Nolan (1984:23) point out that hearing impairment is caused by conductive or sensorineural hearing loss. Martin and Clark (1996:47) define hearing impairment as an inability
to hear due to a number of causes, such as diseases, malformation of parts of the hearing
system and accidents. Hearing impairments have varying degrees dependent upon the
nature and severity of the hearing loss. However, in this study hearing impairment refers to
the condition of ‘not hearing’ normally due to hearing loss, irrespective of the degree of
this loss (Hunt & Marshall, 1994:338).
1.6.4
SERVICES IN SPECIAL EDUCATION
Services in Special Education refer to support given to parents and guardians of children
with disabilities. Such services, as indicated by Lynas (1986:176), include counseling,
guidance, and referrals to organizations such as Social Welfare who can offer financial
assistance and referrals to other professionals such as psychologists, speech therapists and
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doctors. Parents are also advised as to whether the child can be mainstreamed, put in a
resource room or a special class. Mittler and Mittler (1982:13) point out that advice given
to parents is vital since it helps them to plan for the future of their child. In Zimbabwe all
Special Schools offer the above-mentioned services. Such services are therefore within the
context of this study.
Hegarty and Moses (1988:41) assert that special schools cater for children with special
needs. Specialized personnel run such schools. These include specialist teachers, physio,
occupational and speech therapists, psychologists, counselors, audiologists, nurses and
visiting doctors. In developed countries Hunt and Marshall (1994:86) suggest all the
above-mentioned personnel have a part to play in facilitating the educational needs of
children with special needs.
However, in this study special schools refer to schools that cater for children with hearing
impairments.
The main special schools that offer education to children with hearing
impairments in Zimbabwe are, St. Mary’s in Bulawayo, St. John’s in Gweru, St. Paul’s and
St. Joseph’s in Harare, St. James’ in Masvingo along with units in Mutare. These are
pseudonyms given to the schools to maintain their anonymity. These are the special
schools and units referred to in this study. In these schools and units are specialist teachers,
teacher-aids, nurses and social workers. However, there are also resource rooms and units
in mainstream schools all over the country, which are not specifically referred to in this
study.
1.6.5
SCHOOL COUNSELORS
School counselors, as pointed out by Tucker and Nolan (1984:122), are teachers qualified
in both teaching and counseling.
Some schools have counselors only qualified in
counseling. Hunt and Marshall (1994:37) suggest that effective school counselors must
have training in child counseling. In this study school counselors are specialist teachers,
qualified in special education with or without additional courses in counseling. Not all
teachers in special schools have specialist training. Some of the teachers who have been
co-opted to teach in special schools are just qualified to teach in regular schools. Some of
the special schools have social workers that visit parents and offer counseling services,
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while others rely on visiting social workers. All the special schools in Zimbabwe have
nurses who provide medical services to children with special needs. Physio, Occupational
and Speech therapists are employed by the government and therefore attend to children in
special schools by way of routine visits.
1.6.6
COUNSELING ORGANIZATIONS
Power (1986:125) defines Counseling Organizations as independent or government institutions that
offer counseling services to individuals, groups of people and families who may require such a
service. Ospow (1996:337) confirms that counseling organizations are institutions with qualified
personnel who offer counseling to any individual, group or family members who may need to put
their lives in order, strengthen or re-establish their relationships. Such organizations may do this on
a voluntary basis or for financial gain. In this study counseling organizations are special schools,
independent organizations, churches and counseling units within hospitals.
1.6.7
CHURCHES
According to Fukuyama (1997:241) a church is a Christian denomination or group of
people who come together and worship. Wright (1978:83) takes a church as a body of
Christians. In this study a church is taken as a group of people who worship together.
Therefore churches refer to religious organizations that worship as a group and offer
counseling services to either their members only or to their members and also members of
the community. As pointed out by Power (1988:65) churches offer counseling as a moral
service to their member families and individuals. In many churches there is a perception
that if one of their members has a counseling need, it is the church’s responsibility to make
sure that the need is met and therefore the church works as a family to help their fellow
family members (Fukuyama, 1997:237). This means that for the purposes of this study, the
counseling that is provided to parents of children with hearing impairments by churches,
will also be explored and explained.
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1.6.8
SOCIAL SERVICES
Health workers, welfare officers and social workers provide health, welfare and social
security services, respectively to the needy (Hegarty, 1987:98). Hart and Bond (1995:207)
endorse that in most developed countries each of the following departments, health,
education, welfare and security, has a body that caters for people in need particularly
children who have been abandoned or are without parents. Social services in Zimbabwe
are offered by government organizations that help orphans and the needy. These services
are set up in major provinces of the country within which lie the towns where data were
collected. Such services are no longer effective due to lack of resources. As pointed out by
Chimedza (1996:10) the social services in Zimbabwe continue to collapse with more and
more people getting impoverished and scrambling for basic needs within the everdwindling resources. While welfare officers and social workers recommend people who
are in need, particularly parents of children with disabilities, the government cannot afford
to help at all due to lack of resources. The government’s coffers have run dry to such an
extent that the health and social welfare departments no longer offer free practical
assistance. All sectors that used to provide free service to the needy are on the verge of
collapse together with the entire economy of the country.
1.7
PARADIGM FOR THE STUDY
I will use the positivist paradigm for this study.
According to empiricist theory of
knowledge, the primary source of all knowledge is to be found in experience and
observation. In this study I used my experiences gathered during the time I worked with
children with hearing impairments and their parents. To be objective I had to clear my
mind of pre-set ideas and approach the object of study with a clinical or value-free attitude.
In order to achieve this, all survey responses were given equal weight. The instrument for
this study had a wide variety of options and open-ended questions that would not allow for
pre-set ideas. Positivists are of the view that research should be structured, replicable,
allow for experimental control, observation, measurement, quantification, generalization
and objectivity. Positivism relies on multiple methods as a way of capturing as much of
reality as possible. In the positivist version, it is contended that there is reality to be
studied, captured and understood. Whereas post positivists argue that reality can never be
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fully apprehended, but can only be approximated (Guba, 1990:22). Gergen (1985:266)
explicitly points out that there is no objective social reality that can be known with absolute
precision. Instead persons, groups and cultures construct the inter-subjective reality that
they experience.
Creswell (1994:117) asserts that positivists employ tight, pre-selected and pre-structured
conceptual frameworks, sampling frames, research questions, data collection instruments
and methods, data reduction, coding and analytical techniques.
Positivists claim that
quantitative data is objective and empirical, whereas data collected through qualitative
designs is often accused of being subjective, anecdotal, and impressionistic. Positivism
emphasizes on internal and external validity, reliability and objectivity. Positivists take
these disciplines as conventional benchmarks of ‘rigor’ in carrying out research. On the
other hand those who are of the humanistic persuasion that are in favor of the qualitative
designs argue that research in counseling, psychology and special education is better
conducted through the qualitative designs. Herbert (1993:34) maintains that qualitative
research focuses on experiences and feelings rather than facts, subjectivity rather than
objectivity. Its concerns are precisely those excluded from scientific methods.
In this study I used both quantitative and qualitative methods as advocated for by Howard
(2000:132) when he pointed out that within counseling research, there is need for increased
‘methodological pluralism’ thus the combination of qualitative and quantitative approaches
within the same study. With the use of a reliable and valid instrument, a survey appears to
be the most suitable method of collecting data for this study. This data collection method
resonates easily with a positivist paradigm. However, the qualitative aspects of this study
mean that the positivist paradigm will be utilized in a flexible, reflective way in this study.
1.8
ASSUMPTIONS OF THE STUDY
Based on the initial literature review in this study, I assume that:
•
most parents received counseling from special schools.
•
parents were not aware of different counseling organizations in Zimbabwe.
•
counseling organizations do not have qualified counselors.
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1.9
LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
The lack of research carried out in Zimbabwe on counseling the parents of children with
disabilities, including parents of children with hearing impairments, as well as lack of
relevant Zimbabwean literature, contributed to the limitations of the study. The use of
questionnaires does not guarantee future reliability.
Questionnaires do not give the
participants the freedom to express their views on why they respond negatively or
positively to certain items. Counseling is also a sensitive topic for research (Lea & Clarke,
1998:170), therefore what a client might say to a counselor is considered ‘private and
confidential’ and yet research is for the public benefit. In this respect some parents might
have held back some useful information during counseling. The actual counseling process
is an area I have not tackled at all. This leaves the reader with the question of what type of
counseling was offered to these parents? However, this aspect is not part of this particular
study and therefore has not been included. In order to address these limitations, a review of
literature has been widely spread to obtain counseling information from both developing
and developed countries. Open-ended questionnaires were used to allow the participants to
air their views and give suggestions.
1.10
METHODOLOGY OF THE RESEARCH STUDY
I used the cross-sectional survey method and interviews in conducting this study. The main
focus of this study is on guidance and counseling of parents of children with hearing
impairments by Special Schools, Hospitals, Churches and Counseling Organizations.
Many authorities in the field of Special Education, Martin and Clark (1996:186), Medwid
and Weston (1995:192) and Schwartz (1996:148) strongly emphasize the importance of
counseling parents of children with hearing impairments, from the time the children are
born up to the time the parents are able to cope with their children. Early guidance and
counseling helps parents to accept, cope and plan for their children.
I found the survey method to be the most appropriate methodology to explore this theme,
since the study covered the main cities in the country and involved a reasonably large but
manageable sample. The method enabled me to identify attributes of a population from
small groups of individuals as presented in Fowler (1988), Babbie (1990), Sudman and
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Bradburn (1986) and Fink and Kosecoff (1985). This method also helped me to make
estimated assertions about the nature of the total population from which the sample had
been selected. It is also possible to generalize from a sample to a population, drawing
inferences about some characteristics, attitudes, or behaviors of this population. In depth
interviews were used to cross check questionnaire responses.
1.11
POPULATION
The population comprised of all parents that had children with hearing impairments who
were attending primary or secondary education in special schools and units at the time of
the study. Through the schools administration records the population was established to be
exactly 900 families. All participants were hearing parents. It is important to point out that
parents whose children were not attending school in special schools and units during the
time of the study were not included in this population.
For those included in the
population, Masvingo had 194, Harare 197, Gweru 176, Bulawayo 170 and Mutare 163
parents (n = 900). Five major hospitals from the five cities, 30 churches, that claimed to
have proper counseling services, six from each city, five special schools from the following
towns: Bulawayo, Gweru, Masvingo, Mutare and Harare and three counseling agencies all
from Harare, were also to be included.
1.12
SAMPLE (n = 300)
The sample comprised of families of children with hearing impairments in special schools
and units. I used the sample size formula available in Babbie (1990:69) and Fowler
(1988:124). Simple random sampling was used to obtain the required sample. Parents
were grouped according to the provinces they come from, Masvingo, Harare, Gweru,
Bulawayo and Mutare. A random number table was used to prepare cards that were used to
randomly select the required sample. Cards were numbered and put in a box. Five boxes
labeled with the names of the five towns were mounted in different places outside the
administration block. Each box had cards with valid and invalid numbers and parents were
asked to pick a card from the box labeled with the name of the town in their province. All
parents who volunteered to take part in the study and picked valid numbers up to 300 were
considered in the sample. Invalid numbers had the value of their first three digits bigger
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than 300. If both a husband and wife took part in the study, they picked up one card and
completed one questionnaire. The sampling procedure was conducted in five towns, at
special schools for children with hearing impairments, where parents were gathered. The
five special schools in the following cities, Bulawayo, Harare, Masvingo, Mutare and
Gweru, for children with hearing impairments participated in the study. The sample also
included five hospitals, one from each town. All five were included since parents of
children with hearing impairments were referred to them for counseling and further help.
The only three registered counseling agents, all in Harare, took part in the study. 15
churches, three from each city, were included in the study. These were also sampled
through a simple random sampling procedure. Six cards were made for churches that
claimed to run proper counseling sessions in each town and three were numbered. The
three churches whose church members picked numbered cards were selected to take part in
the study. This was done in all the five cities that took part in the study. Parents from rural
and urban areas were also involved in this study.
1.13
VARIABLES
Independent variables in this research involve parents of children with hearing
impairments, counselors in Special Schools, Hospitals, Churches and Counseling
Organizations. Dependent variables involve the questionnaire data on parents of children
with hearing impairments, whether or not they received counseling, and from where, as
well as whether they were able to cope with their children after counseling.
1.14
PROCEDURE
Letters were written to heads of special schools asking for permission to conduct research
at their schools during open days. All heads of special schools granted permission. Letters
to heads of counseling agencies were also written and permission was granted to carry out
the study. Permission was also sought from pastors of sampled churches. Information was
given to all potential participants explaining what the study was all about. Those who
volunteered to participate in the study granted informed consent.
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A structured questionnaire with multiple choice and open-ended questions was
administered to 300 families of children with hearing impairments. The participants of this
study came from the five major provinces of Zimbabwe.
60 from Harare, 60 from
Masvingo, 60 from Mutare, 60 from Gweru and 60 from Bulawayo. Participants were
randomly selected as indicated in the sampling procedure. I organized with heads of
special schools to meet parents on open days. Given the time to meet the parents, I
explained to the parents the purpose of the study and what parents were expected to do in
completing the questionnaires. Parents were given a chance to ask questions on what they
did not understand and clarifications were given. I collected the questionnaires, as soon as
they were completed. Informal interviews were conducted with individuals during the
interval and the lunch break. A different structured questionnaire for service organizations
was administered to personnel responsible for counseling at the following general hospitals,
Harare, Gweru, Mpilo in Bulawayo, Masvingo and Mutare. The same questionnaire was
administered to three registered counseling agencies, all in Harare. Members from 15
churches, three from each of the towns, Harare, Gweru, Masvingo, Bulawayo and Mutare
also completed the questionnaire. See the map of Zimbabwe for the location of towns.
FIGURE 1.14.1
THE
GEOGRAPHIC
DEMARCATION
OF
THE
ZIMBABWEAN
TOWNS
INCLUDED IN THE STUDY
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1.15
INSTRUMENT
As stated, I used questionnaires and interviews to gather data. The questionnaire format
made it possible for participants to freely express their views, opinions, and ideas on their
experiences in writing. I considered that the anonymity of questionnaires would help elicit
more satisfactory information. This claim appears to be corroborated by the assertion of
Babbie (1990:198) when he stated that questionnaires are preferable since they avoid the
embarrassment of direct questioning and so enhance the validity of the responses. It was
intended that the questionnaires would be easy to understand and complete. The patterns of
the questionnaires take the following forms:
•
the fixed alternative format,
•
the multiple choice format,
•
the open-ended or self report format.
1.16
DESCRIPTION OF THE MEASUREMENT TECHNIQUES
Two questionnaires were constructed: one for parents of children with hearing impairments
and the other for service organizations that offer counseling. A semi-structured interview
questionnaire with 15 items was prepared and will be used to cross check parents
questionnaire responses.
It covers all aspects of the parents’ questionnaire.
The
questionnaire for parents is divided into three parts. Section A has questions on personal
information, whether the child was born deaf or not and who counseled the parents.
Section B deals with questions that seek to establish:
•
whether or not parents received counseling,
•
if parents were aware of counseling organizations,
•
if counseled parents were able to cope with their children.
Section C has open-ended questions that seek to establish:
•
the difficulties parents faced in raising their child,
•
the organizations that counseled them,
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•
whether counseling helped them or not,
•
their views on how counseling could benefit them.
The questionnaire for parents has six items in section A 26 items in section B and six items
in section C making a total of 38 items altogether.
The questionnaire for service
organizations has two sections. Section A has six items that seek to establish whether
organizations have counseled parents of children with hearing impairments and how many,
as well as the qualifications of counselors in these organizations. Section B has seven
items that seek to find out whether the counseling given to parents of children with hearing
impairments helps them cope with their children. The questionnaire has a total of 13 items.
Questionnaires used in this study can be found in Appendices D, H and K.
1.17
DEVELOPMENT OF THE INSTRUMENT
Despite a thorough survey of all relevant literature, no suitable instrument was found which
could be used in this particular study. Some of the key references that were consulted
include, Colledge (2002), Nystul (1999), Babbie (1990), Howard (1996, 2000), Satterly
(1981), Shepherd (1984), Oppenheim (1966) and Likert (1967). So instruments were made
specifically for this study with the help of Babbie (1990:140, 149)’s examples. Some of the
items were developed with the use of ideas from Oppenheim (1966:196).
Focusing on the statement of the problem, the instrument for the study was developed from
an original pool of 60 items. Section B had 40 items and section C had 20 items. These
items were given to staff and students in the Special Education and Counseling Department
at the University of Zimbabwe, who were already qualified teachers. The main focus was
on:
•
clarity of language,
•
relevance of each question to the information required,
•
equal numbers of positive and negative items,
•
no repetition,
•
items covering counseling from positive to negative extremes.
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In order to have a balanced pool, items in Section B were grouped into three different
categories as mentioned before:
•
did the parents receive any counseling?
•
who counseled them?
•
what were their perceptions of the counseling they received?
With the help of experts in counseling at the Special Education Department at the
University of Zimbabwe, the wording of certain questions was altered. Changes that were
made by students and staff from the Special Education department reduced the items to 40.
Section B had 30 items and section C had 10 items. However, before the questions were
rewritten, a number of alterations regarding the order, wording, and what the instrument
purported to measure were done with the help of professionals in the Special Education and
Psychology departments. During the process the number of items dropped to 36. Section
B had 28 items and section C had eight items.
Satterly (1981:97) and Shepherd
(1984:124)’s response sets were considered. Out of different response sets outlined by
Shepherd (1984:124), two of them had relevance to this study. These were the positional
set and the category set. With the positional set the respondent repeatedly chooses right
hand and left hand responses. This was controlled by randomizing scoring direction. As
for category set, the respondent repeatedly chooses one type of response.
Balancing
positive and negative item responses controls for this.
The final process, which was the pilot project, was aimed at the structure of the whole
instrument, its relevance to the research questions, repetition of items, terms used in the
wording and clarity of items. The pilot project was undertaken with 20 students who were
studying for a Bachelor of Education Degree in Counseling, 20 students who were studying
for a Bachelor of Education Degree in Special Education (Hearing Impairment) and 40
parents of children with hearing impairments who were not included in the main study.
Some lived in villages, some in small towns and others in big cities.
I then carried out an item analysis to select the best statements for the instrument. This
further reduced the number of items to the 38 that made up the final questionnaire. After
making sure that the questions in section B had an equal balance of positive and negative
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items, they were scattered and numbered 1-26 for the whole questionnaire. Section A had
six items, section B had 26 items and section C had six items.
The questionnaire to Service Organizations (Hospitals, Churches, Special Schools for
children with hearing impairments, and Counseling Organizations), was developed along
the same lines, following the same stages. The final questionnaire had 16 items. Section A
that deals with personal information had six items, section B that focused on parents of
children with hearing impairments had six items and section C that dealt with counselors’
perceptions of parents of children with hearing impairments had four open-ended questions.
1.18
SCORING OF THE SCALE
As emphasized by Dawes (1972:16), scoring must be consistent. Thus if it is decided that
on a positive statement a high score of 5 is for Strongly Agree, then a score of 1 should be
for Strongly Disagree. Negative statements must be scored with a 1 for Strongly Agree and
a 5 for Strongly Disagree. Such reversals are important to take note of. On the Likert-type
scale constructed for this particular study, responses were graded for each statement, and
were expressed in terms of the following five categories, SA; A; U; D and SD. (SA) for
Strongly Agree, (A) for Agree, (U) for Undecided, (D) for Disagree and (SD) for Strongly
Disagree.
The statements were either positive or negative.
To score the scale, the
responses were credited 5; 4; 3; 2 and 1 from the positive to the negative end or viceversa. A “Strongly Agree” with a positive statement would receive a score of 5 as would
“Strongly Disagree” with a negative statement. The sum of the item credits represented the
individual’s total score. Scoring keys were made in order to ease the scoring procedure.
1.19
VALIDITY AND RELIABILITY OF INSTRUMENT
I used my practical experiences of working with parents of and with children with hearing
impairments for thirteen years as a teacher and counselor. I also reviewed literature from
well-known researchers in the field of counseling: Rogers (1942; 1952; 1959), Howe
(1989; 1993; 1996), Davis (1993), McLeod (1994; 1996; 1998; 2000), McCleod (1998)
Howard (1996; 2000), Colledge (2002) and many others cited in the study.
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Oppenheim (1996:23) maintained that reliability of Likert scales tends to be high, partly
because of the greater range of answers permitted to participants. He goes on to say that a
reliability coefficient of .85 is often achieved. By using the internal-consistency method of
item selection, the scale approaches uni-dimensionality in many cases.
As mentioned above the instrument that will be used on parents was administered to 20
students studying for a Bachelor’s Degree in Counseling, 20 students who were studying
for a Bachelor’s Degree in Special Education (Hearing Impairment) and 20 parents of
children with hearing impairments from small towns and villages, who did not take part in
the main study. It was interesting to note that 38 of the students and 19 parents who
marked a positive item also marked its direct negative one. Only four cases marked
undecided on item 26 on the questionnaire.
The instrument that was to be used on Service Organizations was administered to 20
students studying counseling and their lecturers in the Education and Psychology
Departments. All 20 students and eight lecturers who marked a positive item also marked
its direct negative one.
This gave the instruments some credibility in reliability and
validity. Adams (1966:47) pointed out that the problem with attitude and perception scales
is that they deal with verbalized attitude or perceptions rather than actions. The use of such
an instrument does not guarantee future validity. The participants may not complete the
questionnaires accurately. Attitudes and perceptions are not easy to measure since the
responses solemnly depend on the individual’s complete honesty and the avoidance of the
tendency to give socially acceptable answers (Cohen & Holliday, 1982:253). As a whole
however, the instrument was theoretically sound and its content was satisfactory.
Experienced staff and students in the Special Education Department, lecturing and studying
counseling respectively, checked the content. Above all, an instrument devised for a
specific purpose is more suitable than any of the published scales (Satterly, 1981:87). As
evidenced in the review of literature, the instrument to be used in this study will represent a
first step in exploring the field of counseling parents of children with disabilities in
Zimbabwe.
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1.20
METHODS OF DATA ANALYSIS
I will present analysis of quantitative data first, followed by qualitative data.
1.20.1 QUANTITATIVE DATA
The quantitative data for this study will be analyzed using descriptive statistics.
Descriptive statistics (Kent, 2001: 188) provides a method of reducing large data matrices
to manageable summaries to permit easy understanding and interpretation. In this study
descriptive statistics and the associations among variables summarize single variables.
Using descriptive statistics I will start with a set of data that is categorized, sorted out,
recorded and then interpreted. I will then attempt to convey the essential characteristics of
the data by arranging the data into a more interpretable form, forming frequency
distributions and generating graphical displays as well as calculating numerical indexes
such as frequencies and percentages. Variables are summarized in a data set, one at a time,
and are also examined in how they interrelated (examining correlations). The key factor in
descriptive statistics is how to communicate the essential characteristics of the data. One of
the most basic ways to describe the data values of a variable is to construct a frequency
distribution. A frequency distribution is a systematic arrangement of data values in which
the data are rank ordered and the frequencies of all unique data values are shown (Babbie,
1998: 68). In this study descriptive statistics will be used to establish parents’ perceptions
of the counseling they received, whether or not they were able to cope with their children
after counseling, who counseled them and also the qualifications of the people who
counseled them.
1.20.2 QUALITATIVE DATA
Qualitative analysis is used to analyze parents and counselors’ responses to open-ended
questions where they give their views and suggestions. Analysis of qualitative data is often
complex and time consuming. The process involves categorization, sorting, recording and
interpretation. McLeod (2000:328) suggests that qualitative data provides for a description
and interpretation of what things mean to people. This data will be used to supplement the
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quantitative data and to gain a deeper understanding of the responses of the participants in
the study.
1.21
ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS IN RESEARCH
Informed consent was sought and it was explained to the parents that participation in the
study was voluntary. According to Capuzzi and Gross (1997:94) ethics is the philosophical
study of moral value of human conduct and of the rules and principles that ought to govern
it, or a code of behavior considered correct especially that of a particular group, profession
or individual. It also involves the moral fitness of a decision and course of action taken.
McCleod (2000:327) points out the paradox between research and counseling and
psychotherapy where the therapy is normally conducted in private between client and
counselor.
On the other hand research implies making results public.
According to
Heppner (1992:78) “ethics are expressions of our values and a guide to achieving them”.
This closely follows the work of Hill, Thompson and Williams (1993:115) on ethics in
research where they point out that ethics are central to research. Since counseling is about
privacy between the client and the counselor, whereas research is a public affair, ethics
become the guiding principle that ensures the protection of the client as a participant in the
research process (Woolfe & Dryden, 1998:57). Heppner goes on to point out that it is in
the interest of ethics for the researcher to discuss his/her study limitations and problems
experienced during data collection and how these problems impacted on the quality of
conclusions drawn from the results.
In this study parents were verbally notified of the purpose of the study and of how the
information they contributed was going to be used. They were also assured that they would
be informed of the results of the study should they want to know.
Anonymity and
confidentiality of individual contributions were upheld. Schools, churches, counseling
organizations and hospitals were also informed of confidentiality and anonymity.
Trust is an important cornerstone in the counseling relationship, and central to the
development of the maintenance of trust is the principle of confidentiality. The obligation
of counselors to maintain confidentiality in their relationships with their clients is not
absolute (McLeod, 2000:3). However, counselors need to be aware of both the ethical and
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legal guidelines that apply. In distinguishing between “confidentiality” and “privileged
communication,” as pointed out by Miles and Huberman (1994:10), in a research context, it
is important to keep in mind that confidentiality is an ethical concept, whereas privileged
communication is a legal concept. Confidentiality is defined as ethical responsibility and a
professional duty, which demands that information learned in private interaction with a
client not be revealed to others. Professional ethical standards mandate this behavior
except when the counselor’s commitment to uphold client confidences must be set aside
due to special or compelling circumstances or legal mandate (Arthur & Swanson, 1993:3).
For example when a client is a danger to self or others, the law places physical safety above
considerations of confidentiality or the right of privacy. Protection of the person takes
precedence and includes the duty to warn. In this research anonymity is maintained within
these boundaries. In chapter 2, the accumulated experience of the literature on the topic of
counseling will be examined.
---oOo---
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2
2.1
THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK AND
LITERATURE REVIEW
INTRODUCTION
I will start this chapter by exploring the concept of ‘counseling’, and then I will provide
some historical background to the development of counseling, as we know it today. This
will be followed with a discussion of different theories of counseling and the application of
these theories in practice. Group counseling, as it applies to this study will be explored and
the main distinctions between traditional and western counseling will be delineated. This
will lead into the discussion of counseling for parents of children with hearing impairment
at large and in Zimbabwe in particular.
The various ways in which parents access
counseling are also explained, based on our preceding knowledge base on this topic. I will
also give a scrutiny and critique on how counseling organizations in Zimbabwe operate.
2.2
COUNSELING
Rogers (1942:231) says counseling is a process where counselors help clients to come to
terms with their feelings and thoughts. In this way they gain insight into their problems in
such a way that they view problems in a new or different light, which helps them to make
rational, constructive decisions to change behavior and find solutions to their problems.
Rogers (1942:234) also suggested that one view of human beings is that they are by nature
irrational, un-socialized and destructive of themselves and others. He goes on to say that
counseling reverses this and views the client as basically rational, socialized, forward
moving and realistic. Burn (1992:17) takes counseling as a conversation where two groups
of people take turns in exchanging views but with the counselor as more of a listener while
the counselee does most of the talking. Fear and Wool (1996:89) say counseling is help
given to a client to gain insight into his own thoughts, feelings and behavior in such a way
that he can make rational constructive decisions to solve his problems.
The British
Association for Counseling (BAC) (1993) says that the overall aim of counseling is to
provide an opportunity for the client to work towards living in a more satisfying and a
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resourceful way. The association goes on to say that counseling may be concerned with
developmental issues, addressing and resolving specific problems, making decisions,
coping with crises, developing personal insight and knowledge, working through feelings
of inner conflict or improving relationships with others. In this case the counselor’s role is
to facilitate the client’s work in ways, which respect the client’s values, personal resources
and capacity for self-determination. Gibson and Mitchell (1993:164) assert that counseling
is a one-to-one relationship that focuses on a person’s growth, adjustment, problem solving
and decision making needs.
This process is initiated by establishing a state of
psychological contact or relationship between the counselor and the counselee and
progresses to the extent that certain conditions essential to the success of the counseling
process prevail.
Many counseling practitioners La Forge (1990:457), Lee (1991:6),
Lucking and Mitchum (1990:270) and Nelson (1992:218) believe that such conditions
include counselor genuineness, or congruence, respect for client and an emphatic
understanding of the client’s internal form of reference. These authorities go on to point
out that effective counseling requires counselors with the highest level of training and
professional skills as well as the necessary qualities. Counseling programs will suffer in
effectiveness and credibility unless counselors exhibit understanding, warmth, humanness
and positive attitudes towards humankind.
Considering the above definitions and
expressed views, it would stand to reason that the philosophy of counseling is based on
individual respect, worthiness and the right to choices and direction. McLeod (1996:142)
points out that the less defensive human beings are, the more positive and constructive they
become. Since the various definitions of counseling differ little in actual meaning, one
might assume that all counselors function similarly in like situations, interpret client
information in the same manner, and agree on desired outcomes in specific situations.
However, these counselors may differ as much as the approaches they employ.
2.3
HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVES
2.3.1
OUR HERITAGE FROM THE PAST
Counseling is a response to human needs. As pointed out by Howard (1996:38) and Corey
(1986:126) it is possible that the earliest (although unconfirmed) occasion in which humans
sought a counselor was when Adam reaped the consequences of his eating the apple in the
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Garden of Eden. The two assert that there is no proof of this early beginning to counseling,
but an abundance of evidence suggests that persons throughout the ages have sought the
advice and counsel of others believed to posses superior knowledge, insights and/or
experiences. Perhaps the first counterparts of the present day counselor were the chieftains
and elders of the ancient tribal societies to whom youth turned or were often sent for advice
and guidance (Webb, 2000:302). In these primitive societies the tribal members shared
fundamental economic enterprises such as hunting, fishing and farming. No elaborate
career guidance programs were developed or needed because occupational limitations were
usually determined by two criteria, age and sex. However, as time went on people acquired
skills necessary for societal needs and the occupational determinant of inheritance became
common, with parents passing on social and trade skills to their children. Adler (1959:72)
clearly shows that a study of primitive society can lead one to conclude that most of the
conflicts existing in present day society regarding career decision-making were absent.
This absence of a career dilemma should not be interpreted to mean that workers did not
enjoy or take pride in choosing a career if they were given a chance. Even the earliest
evidence of humankind’s existence indicated that pride and pleasure resulted from
developing and demonstrating one’s skills in developing one’s potential. In the early
civilizations (Shumba, 1995:32), the grandparents, church priests, elders in the community
and philosophers assumed the function of advising and counsel. It was generally believed
that within the individual were forces that could be stimulated and guided towards goals
beneficial to both the individual and the community. Of these early Greek ‘counselors’,
Plato is one of the first to organize systematic theory (Adler, 1959: 67). Plato’s interests
were varied, and he examined the psychology of the individual in all of its ramifications: in
moral issues, in terms of education, in relation to society, and theological perspective. He
explored the things that make man virtuous among the following: inheritance, upbringing,
education and effective teaching and also which techniques have been successfully used in
persuading and influencing people in their decisions and beliefs.
It is his way of
questioning and methods that made the path for the counseling relationship. His methods
were dramatic and his questioning had the dynamics of very real human interactions in
which the characters are as important as the things they say. The second great counselor of
the early civilizations was Aristotle (Adler, 1959: 68) who made many significant changes
to the field of psychology, which was not well established at the time. He carried out a
study of people interacting with their environment and with others, as well as how those
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interactions created relationships. Hippocrates and other Greek physicians contributed
towards the possible solutions in treating and setting the human mind at peace. As time
progressed, in the Hebrew society individuality and the right of self-determination and
direction were assumed. The early Christian societies emphasized, at least in theory if not
always in practice, many of the humanistic ideals that later became basic to democratic
societies, and in this century, the counseling fraternity.
Philosophers who were also educators such as Luis Vives (1492-1540) recognized the need
to counsel and guide persons according to their attitudes and aptitudes. In the middle ages
attempts at counseling increasingly came under the control of the church. The early Middle
Ages had centered the duty of counseling, advising and directing youth in the parish priest.
At the time, education was largely under the church jurisdiction. Efforts to place youth in
appropriate vocations occurred during the rise of European Kingdoms and the subsequent
expansion of the colonial empires (Whitely, 1984:185). Books aimed at helping youth
choose an occupation began to appear in the 17th century (Zytowski, 1972:231). Tomasco
Garzoni, an Italian, produced a book with almost 1000 pages which treated various
professionals and occupations in great detail. His publication, ‘The Universal Plaza of All
the Professions of the World’ had 24 Italian editions and was translated into Latin, German
and Spanish. Zytowski (1972:275) labeled it the Occupational Outlook Handbook of the
16th and 17th century. In the early 17th century Powell published ‘Tom of All Trades’ in
1631 in London. Powell gave information on the professions and how to gain access to
them, he even suggested sources of financial aid and the preferred schools in which to
prepare (Zytowski, 1972:270). The most famous United States educator of the 19th century,
Horace Mann, included in his 12th Annual Report the advantages of including guidance and
counseling in American education, especially when it involved dealing with students with
disabilities and their parents (Johansen, Collins & Johnson, 1975:328). The scientific study
by Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) had important significance on human behavior and was of
special significance to the eventual development of counseling. The 20th century was
considered the ripe time for the development of counseling and other therapy programs that
best help meet human needs.
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2.3.2
VOCATIONAL COUNSELING
In 1908 Frank Parsons organized the Boston Vocational Bureau to provide vocational
assistance to young people and to train teachers to serve as vocational counselors. The
teacher’s work was to assist students in choosing a vocation wisely and in making the
transition from school to suitable work. In 1909, Parsons published ‘Choosing a Vocation’
and in this book he discussed the role of the counselor and techniques that may be
employed in vocational counseling.
He divided his book into three parts: personal
investigation, industrial investigation and the organization and work. He considered three
factors necessary for the wise choice of a vocation:
•
A clear understanding of oneself, one’s aptitude, abilities, interests, ambition,
resources and limitations.
•
Knowledge of the requirements and conditions of success, advantages and
disadvantages, compensation, opportunities, and prospects in different lines of
work.
•
True reasoning on the relations of these two groups of facts.
It is expected of counselors who work with parents of children with hearing impairments
that they should guide them in clear terms so that they are in a position to plan carefully the
future of their children. As illustrated by Parsons, vocational counseling is a crucial
transition stage for students who are leaving school and joining vocational training which
will largely determine their lives. Berry (2000:52) endorsed Parsons’ ideas with particular
attention to children with disabilities whose future in the job market is not so bright.
Parsons conducted extensive interviews that covered language, memory, and quickness of
thinking, enthusiasm, expression, manner and voice. Considering Parsons’ standpoint, it
would stand to reason that counselors should be thoroughly familiar with all relevant details
concerning job opportunities and distribution of demand in industries and courses of study,
before they embarked on vocational counseling. A detailed analysis should be made of
industrial opportunities for men and women, including location and demand, work
conditions and pay. Vocational counselors were trained for four to twelve months, but such
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candidates were required to have sound judgment, character, and relevant occupational
background and to be mature. The following were also required of them:
•
A practical working knowledge of the fundamental principles and methods of
modern psychology.
•
An experience involving sufficient human contact to give him an intimate
acquaintance with human nature in a considerable number of its different phases.
He/She must understand the dominance motives, interests and ambitions that
control the lives of men and be able to recognize the symptoms that indicate the
presence or absence of important elements of character.
•
An ability to deal with young people in a sympathetic, earnest, searching, candid,
helpful and attractive way.
•
A scientific method analysis and principles of investigation by which laws and
causes are ascertained, facts are classified and correct conclusions drawn. Ability
to recognize the essential facts and principles involved in each case, group them
according to their true relations and draw the conclusion they justify.
In recognition of the work he has done, Parsons is generally referred to as the ‘father of the
guidance movement in American Education’. Other early leaders who contributed in the
guidance and counseling movement were Davis, Reed, Weaver and Hill according to
Rockwell and Rothney (1961:402).
The first quarter of the 20th century saw the introduction of intelligence tests to complement
the efforts of guidance and counseling. In the 1920s counseling increased its popularity to
such an extent that it became a topic of discussion and debate in educational circles. In the
1930s and 1940s the trait – factor approach to counseling became increasingly popular. In
1939 the often-labeled ‘directive theory’ received stimulus from Williamson when he wrote
‘How to Counsel Students’, A manual of Techniques for Clinical Counselors. During the
period 1902-1987 Carl Rogers became a significant contributor to the new direction with an
impact on counseling in both school and non-school settings. Rogers set forth a new
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counseling theory in two significant books, Counseling and Psychotherapy (1942) and a
refinement of his early position, Client-Centered Therapy (1951) in which he offered non
directive counseling as an alternative to the older, more traditional methods. Another
dimension to the techniques of counselors of the 1940s was group counseling to which
Rogers was again a major contributor. Feingold (1947:548) called for a different approach
towards guidance and counseling, targeting people who really needed it such as those who
had family, relationship or social problems. In 1958 legislation was passed in the United
States of America to enforce that personnel employed in guidance and counseling were
well trained. As pointed out by Gibson, Mitchell and Basile (1993:206) there was a rapid
growth in counseling and guidance such that the standard of training and qualifications
were upgraded. In the 1960s, Gibert Wrenn contributed by writing ‘The Counselor in a
Changing World’ where he examined the counselor’s role in a society with changing ideas
about human behavior. Wrenn (1962:109) noted the growing complexity of the counselor’s
task. He further suggested that counselors should not only understand clients in isolation,
as it were but also understand the social structure of the community. They should exhibit
awareness of today and of the future since clients continuously attempt to adjust to a
rapidly changing world.
In African countries counseling used to be undertaken by relatives who guided the young in
taking up occupations, marriages and relationships with other people in the community.
Most of this counseling was in the form of giving advice and making suggestions towards
the solving of clients’ problems. It was assumed and expected that elders through their
experiences of life had solutions to the problems of the young (Richards, 2000:148).
This brief review of some historic highlights in the development of guidance and
counseling gives us an insight into the origin of counseling. In the light of these premises,
we can suggest that a fundamental basis for counseling program development must be
rooted in our understanding of the characteristics and needs of all our clientele, plus an
understanding of the environment that shapes them. As the past illuminates the future, it is
possible to predict that, regardless of the wonderful scientific and technological advances
that await humankind, many persons will search out the counsel and advice of trained
counselors.
Looking at the current major social concerns in society, one sees the
unprecedented opportunities for the counseling profession to serve that society.
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Undoubtedly parents of children with hearing impairment face frustrations, anger, guilt and
helplessness and it is clear that they will benefit from the support of and the helping
relationship with a counselor. Therefore the need to explore the ways in which parents
access counseling services during this challenging time seems eminent.
2.4
THEORIES OF COUNSELING
Theories of counseling were initially developed by Anglo European Counselors.
Theoretical models for counseling have their origins in the values and beliefs of persons
who, in turn, have converted these into a philosophy and a theoretical model for counseling
(Brammer, Shostrom & Abrego, 1989:263). Theory helps to explain what happens in a
counseling relationship and assists the counselor in predicting, evaluating, and improving
results. It also provides a framework for making systematic observations about counseling
and encourages the coherence and production of new ideas. Hence counseling theory can
be viewed as a practical means of helping to make sense of the counselor’s observations. A
theory suggests guidelines that provide signs of success or failure of counseling activities.
Essentially the theory becomes a working model to explain what clients may be like and
what may be helpful to them, in this case parents of children with hearing impairments.
The end result is twofold, counselors reach a deeper and richer understanding of the nature
of their client, and their theory is enriched in ways that make it useful in working with
future clients. Perhaps most importantly for counselors, is the fact that a theory can directly
influence the strategies they use with their clients. If a counselor strictly follows a theory
without being flexible, it can affect the counseling procedures that are most applicable with
a given client or with a particular presenting problem. Theories can be enhanced by multicultural/cultural awareness and considerations. In fact the counselor’s failure to recognize
the unique cultures of clients from diverse backgrounds is likely to handicap interaction
with those clients (McWhirter & McWhirter, 1991:96). A study by Webb (2000:302) in
New Zealand, where the white settlers did not recognize the cultural differences and what
partnership with the Maori people meant, shows that counseling could not make any
headway. It is therefore important for counselors to consider the extended background
family support networks, coping styles and the cultural context of the client for integration
into their theoretical orientation.
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The ten commonly used theories, which are sometimes referred to as types of therapy are as
follows:
•
Psychoanalytic Theory
•
Individual Psychology Theory
•
Client-Centered Therapy
•
Behavioral Theory
•
Rational Emotive Therapy
•
Reality Therapy
•
Transactional Analysis
•
Gestalt Therapy
•
Integrated Theories and Eclectic Counseling.
It is not the writer’s intention to discuss the details of these theories since it is not the aim
of this study. Therefore only a brief explanation of how they were developed and how they
work is given. This is done in view of the fact those counselors who may have counseled
parents of children with hearing impairment could have used any and/or a combination of
these.
2.4.1
PSYCHOANALYTIC THEORY
According to Corey (1986:148) Freud gave psychology a new look and new horizons. He
called attention to psychodynamic factors that motivate behavior, focused on the role of the
unconscious and developed most of the first therapeutic procedures for understanding and
modifying the structure of one’s basic character. He stimulated a great deal of controversy,
exploration, and further development of personality theory and laid the foundation on
which later psychodynamic systems rest. His theory is a benchmark against which many
other theories are measured. The psychoanalytic theory views the structure of personality
as separated into three major systems, the id, the ego and superego. Hereditary factors are
represented by the id, which functions in the inner world of one’s personality and is largely
unconscious. It is usually viewed as the original system personality that is inherent and
present at birth. It is believed that the id is ruled by the ‘pleasure principle’, and thus it
seeks to avoid tension and pain, seeking instead gratification and pleasure.
Corey
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(1986:304) describes it as ‘the spoiled brat of personality’. The ego, which is only viewed
as the only rational element of personality, has contact with the world of reality, controls
consciousness and provides realistic and logical thinking and planning. If counseling could
bring parents of children with hearing impairment to this realization, then they would apply
logic and reason to solve their problems and to plan ahead for their children.
The superego represents the conscience of the mind and operates on the principle of moral
realism. It represents the moral code of the person, usually based on one’s perceptions of
the moralities and values of society. As a result of its role, the superego provides rewards
such as pride and self-love, and punishments, such as feelings of guilt or inferiority, to its
owner. When a child with hearing impairments is born in a family, parents lose pride, selflove, feel punished by the creator and suffer feelings of guilt and inferiority (Moores,
1987:182, Quigley & Kretschmer, 1982:78, Allen & Allen, 1979:34 and Nolan & Tucker,
1981:23).
As a result of this triangle, (id, the ego and superego) the Psychoanalytic Theory views
tension, conflict and anxiety as inevitable in humans and the major goal of counseling is
seeking to direct behavior towards reduction of this tension. Since personality conflict is
present in all people, nearly everyone can benefit from professional counseling. The
Psychoanalytic approach requires insight that relies on openness and self-disclosure.
Multi-culturally oriented counselors would be aware that these traits might sometimes be
seen as signs of immaturity.
The goals of psychoanalytic theory, according to Wadsworth (1990), aim to provide a
climate that helps clients re-experience early family relationships and uncover buried
feelings associated with past events that carry over into current behavior. Also, to facilitate
insight into the origins of faulty psychological development as well as to stimulate a
corrective emotional experience.
2.4.2
THE INDIVIDUAL PSYCHOLOGY THEORY
This theory is often called Adlerian therapy. It sees the person as a unity, an indivisible
whole, and it focuses on the individuality of persons. At the core of this theory is the belief
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that there exists within a human being an innate drive to overcome inferiorities and develop
one’s potential and self-actualization. The theory hinges on social interest, which is central
to the growth and actualization of the individual and the good of the society. Because
social interest is viewed as an innate aptitude, it must be consciously developed over time
(Manaster & Corsini, 1982:291). Social interest, also referred to as one’s ability to give
and take, is accomplished through the life tasks in which all human beings participate.
These tasks include work, friendship, and love (Sweeney, 1989:49). When a person comes
for therapy, it is in one or more of these areas that he/she is experiencing incongruence or
discomfort. The counseling process then is seen as a means by which the therapist and
counselee work together to help the counselee develop awareness as well as healthier
attitudes and behavior so as to function fully in society. The Adlerian counseling process
involves four stages:
•
establishing relationship
•
diagnosis
•
insight/ interpretation
•
reorientation
In the first session the counselor establishes a relationship with the client through an
interview in which the client is helped to feel comfortable, accepted, respected and cared
about. The client is then encouraged to explain what helped her/him to determine the need
for counseling. The counseling process is explained and discussed with the client. The
client is then asked to discuss how things are going in each of the life task areas. The
diagnostic stage involves the ‘life-style interview’. The interpretation phase is the time
during which the counselor and client develop insight from the lifestyle interview into the
client’s problems. The orientation stage is the most critical. The therapist helps the client
to move from intellectual insight to reality. With the counselor’s support, encouragement
and direction, the counselee changes from unhealthy ways of thinking, feeling and
behaving to ways more satisfying to him/her and society. Wallace (1986:157) believes that
this theory is most effective in marriage, child and family counseling and less effective in
one to one therapy. The Adlerian theory creates a therapeutic relationship that encourages
participants to explore their basic life assumptions and to achieve a broader understanding
of lifestyles. It helps clients recognize their strengths and their power to change and also
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encourages them to accept full responsibility for their chosen lifestyle as well as for any
changes they want to make.
2.4.3
CLIENT-CENTERED THERAPY
Client-centered (now frequently referred to as ‘person centered’) counseling is another
historically significant and influential theory. This theory was originally developed by Carl
Rogers as a reaction against what he considered the basic limitations of psychoanalysis.
Due to his major contributions, the approach is referred to as ‘Rogerian Counseling’. The
approach focuses on the client’s responsibility and capacity to discover ways to more fully
encounter reality. Therapists concern themselves mainly with the client’s perception of self
and of the world. Rogers points out that the therapist should be genuine, non-possessive,
warm, accepting and have empathy. These aspects constitute the necessary and sufficient
conditions for therapeutic effectiveness. The therapist’s function is to be immediately
present and accessible to the client and to focus on the here and now experience created by
their relationship. The client-centered model is optimistic and positive in its view of
humankind.
Clients are viewed as being good, possessing the capability of self-
understanding, insight, problem solving and decision-making, as well as change and
growth. The counselor facilitates the counselee’s self-understanding, clarifies and reflects
back to the client the expressed feelings and attitudes of the client. The aim is to help the
client bring about change in himself/herself.
The theory provides a safe climate in which members can explore the full range of their
feelings. It helps members to become increasingly open to new experiences and develop
confidence in themselves and their own judgments. Clients are encouraged to live in the
present, develop openness, honesty, and spontaneity. The theory makes it possible for
clients to encounter others in the here and now and to use the group as a place to overcome
feelings of alienation.
2.4.4
BEHAVIORAL THEORY
Behavioral theory and conditioning can be traced directly from Pavlov’s 19th century
discoveries, and from further research carried out by Watson, Thorndike and Skinner who
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developed the theory to its present popularity. The behaviorist views behavior as a set of
learned responses to events, experiences or stimuli in a person’s life history. For the
behaviorist counseling involves the systematic use of a variety of procedures that are
intended specifically to change behavior in terms of mutually established goals between a
client and a counselor. Behaviorists also believe that stating the goals of counseling in
terms of behavior that is observable is more useful than stating the goals that are more
broadly defined, such as self-understanding or acceptance of self. Therefore counseling
outcomes must be identifiable in terms of overt behavior changes. Counselors utilizing
behavioral theory assume that the client’s behavior is the result of conditioning. The
counselor further assumes that each individual behaves in a predictable way to any given
situation or stimulus, depending on what has been learnt (Ivey, et al., 1993:264). Gilliland,
James and Bowman (1989:173) point out that modern counseling involves the client in the
analysis, planning, process and evaluation of his/her behavior management program. The
counselor is expected to have training and experience in human behavior modification and
also to serve as consultant, teacher, adviser, reinforcer and facilitator. The theory helps
group members eliminate maladaptive behaviors and learn new more effective behavioral
patterns.
2.4.5
RATIONAL EMOTIVE THERAPY (RET)
The Rational Emotive theory was developed by Albert Ellis. This theory is based on the
assumption that people have the capacity to act in either a rational or irrational manner.
Rational behavior is viewed as effective and potentially productive whereas irrational
behavior results in unhappiness and non-productivity. Ellis assumes that many types of
emotional problems result from irrational patterns of thinking. This irrational pattern may
begin early in life and be reinforced by significant events in the individual’s life as well as
by the general culture and environment. The RET approach to counseling declares that
most people in our society have developed many irrational ways of thinking and that these
irrational thoughts lead to irrational or inappropriate behavior. Therefore counseling is
designed to help people recognize and change these irrational beliefs into more rational
ones. The accomplishment of this goal requires an active, confrontive, and authoritative
counselor who has the capacity to utilize the whole variety of techniques (Hansen, et al.,
1986:482). The RET therapist does not believe that a personal relationship between the
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client and counselor is a prerequisite to successful counseling. In fact it is believed that the
therapist may frequently challenge and provoke the irrational beliefs of the client. Rational
Emotional Therapy can be applied to individual and group therapy, marathon encounter
groups, marriage counseling and family therapy.
The goal of this theory is to teach group members that they are responsible for their own
disturbances and help them identify and abandon the process of self-indoctrination by
which they keep their disturbances alive. It also aims at eliminating the clients’ irrational
and self-defeating outlook on life and to replace it with a more tolerant and rational one.
2.4.6
REALITY THERAPY
Reality therapy was largely developed by William Glasser (Adler, 1959: 96). Glasser’s
approach places confidence in the counselee’s ability to deal with his or her actions through
a realistic or rational process. From a reality therapy standpoint, counseling is simply a
special kind of teaching or training that attempts to teach an individual what he should have
learnt during normal growth in a short period of his life. However, it appears that Glasser’s
theory leaves a lot to be desired. If counseling were learnt through a natural growth
process, a mechanism would have been built within humans to be able to think logically
and resolve their problems during difficult times. This is not normally the case. Nystul
(1999:319) points out that when a client is in a helpless state, he/she needs someone who
can listen with full attention, allow the client to go through his/her emotions, acknowledge
the client’s problems, create a positive environment for the client to think logically and
rationally and allow the client time to find solutions to his/her problems. Glasser (1984:61)
holds that reality therapy is applicable to individuals with any sort of psychological
problem, from mild upset to complete psychotic withdrawal. It works well with behavior
and drug-and alcohol–related problems. It has been applied widely in schools, institutions,
hospitals, families and business management. It focuses on the present and upon getting
people to understand that essentially they choose all their actions in an attempt to fulfill
basic needs. When they are unable to do this, they suffer or cause others to suffer. The
therapist’s task is to lead them towards the better or more responsible choices that are
almost always available. Reality therapy does not emphasize the client’s past history but
emphasizes a major psychological need that is present throughout life, the need for identity.
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It includes a need for feeling worthy, a sense of uniqueness as well as separateness and
distinctiveness. The need for identity is considered to be universal among individuals in all
cultures (Corey, 1982:89). Reality therapy is based on the assumption that a client will
assume personal responsibility for his/her well-being.
The acceptance of this
responsibility, in a sense, helps a person achieve autonomy or a state of maturity by which
one relies on one’s own internal support. Whereas many of the counseling theories suggest
that the counselor should function in a noncommittal way. Reality therapists praise clients
when they act responsibly and indicate disapproval when they do not.
The theory helps members toward learning realistic and responsible behavior developing a
‘success identity’. Group members are assisted in making value judgments about their
behaviors and in deciding on a plan of action for change.
2.4.7
TRANSACTIONAL ANALYSIS (TA)
Transactional analysis is a humanistic approach that assumes a person has the potential to
choose and direct or reshape his/her own destiny. Eric Berne developed and popularized
this theory in the 1960s. It is designed to help the client renew and evaluate early decisions
and to make new, more appropriate choices. Transactional analysis stresses understanding
the transactions between people as a way of understanding the different personalities that
comprise each of us. The theory places a great deal of emphasis on the ego. The client is
assisted in gaining social control of her/his life by learning to use all ego states where
appropriate. The ultimate goal of the counselor is to help clients change from inappropriate
life positions and behaviors to new and more productive behaviors. An essential technique
in TA counseling is the contract that precedes each counseling step. The contract between
counselor and counselee is by mutual agreement, in terms of time, when to stop and
whether to record the session or not. Once signed the contract becomes binding and legal.
The theory can be used with individuals but is more suitable for persons within a group
setting. Transactional analysis counselors feel that the group setting facilitates the process
of providing feedback to persons about the kind of transactions in which they engage. The
counseling group then represents a microcosm of the real world.
In this setting the
individual group members are able to work on their own objectives, and the counselor acts
as a group leader.
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The theory assists clients in becoming free of scripts and games in their interactions and
also challenges them to reexamine early decisions as well as make new ones based on
awareness.
2.4.8
GESTALT COUNSELING
The Gestalt therapy was developed by Fredrick Perls and is a humanistic approach in which
the therapist assists the client towards self-integration (George & Cristiani, 1995:127).
This helps him/her to learn to utilize his/her energy in appropriate ways, to grow, develop
and actualize. The primary focus of this approach is the present, the ‘here and now’. The
implication being that the past is gone and the future have yet to arrive. Therefore, only the
present is important. Gestalt counseling has as its major objective the integration of the
person or “getting it all together”. The treatment is finished when the client has achieved
the basic requirements. These are: a change in outlook, a technique of adequate selfexpression and assimilation, and the ability to extend awareness to the verbal level. In this
state a client has reached integration, which facilitates its own development. Thereafter,
progress can be left to the counselee. In order to achieve this togetherness the counselor
seeks to increase the client’s awareness by providing an atmosphere conducive to the
discovery of the client’s needs or what the client has lost because of environmental
demands. The counselor can create the atmosphere in which the client can experience the
necessary discovery and growth. From these assumptions we can conclude that the Gestalt
therapist has a positive view of the individual’s capacity self-direction. Furthermore the
client is encouraged to utilize his/her capacity and to take responsibility for his own life.
The main goal is to enable members to pay close attention to their moment-to-moment
experiences, so they recognize and integrate disowned aspects of themselves.
2.4.9
INTEGRATED THEORY
This theory takes into account a number of aspects from other theories. Ivey, et al.
(1987:59) note that an integrated knowledge of skills, theory, and practice is essential for
culturally intentional counseling and therapy. The culturally intentional therapist knows
how to construct a creative decision-making interview and can use micro-skills to attend to
and to influence clients in a predicted direction. Important in this process are individual
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and cultural empathy, client observation skills, assessment of person and environment, and
the application of positive techniques of growth and change. Cultural values are central to
counseling. Richards (2000:149), points out that culture demands, and society enforces,
adherence.
The theory provides organizing principles for counseling and therapy, hence the culturally
intentional counselor has knowledge of alternative theoretical approaches and treatment
modalities.
Practice is the integration of skills and theory.
Therefore, the culturally
intentional counselor or therapist is competent in skills and theory, and is able to apply
them to research and practice for client benefit.
The main aim of this theory is to provide conditions that maximize self-awareness and
reduce blocks to growth. It helps clients discover and use freedom of choice and assume
responsibility for their own choices.
2.4.10 ECLECTIC COUNSELING
The eclectic approach to counseling is one of long standing traditional, and one of equally
long-standing controversy. It originally provided a safe middle-of-the-road theory, for
counselors who neither desired nor felt capable of functioning as purely directive or nondirective counselors. This approach allows the counselor to construct his/her own theory
by drawing on established theories. It has often been suggested that an eclectic counselor
can choose the best of all counseling worlds. Others contend that the theory encourages
counselors to become theoretical ‘jacks of all trades’. Left to the counselor’s decision, the
approach can develop deficiencies and be open to abuse. The counselor is likely to be
influenced by his/her values, views, and beliefs. This can only be avoided by self-study of
client-counselor relationships as well as personal therapeutic experiences resulting in
increased self-understanding. As observed by Wallace (1986:95), counselors cannot shelve
their responsibility for constructing a personal theory of counseling by turning it into an
intellectual game or academic exercise. Their obligation to the clients is far too real for
that. I strongly feel that this approach should only be used by highly skilled counselors
who are capable of weaving a number of approaches into their counseling practice.
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Developing an eclectic approach to therapy requires an enterprising juxtaposition and a
genuine confrontation of one’s work with the values, thoughts, and research of others.
While independence of observation and thought is essential to an eclectic stance, so are
understanding and respect for other theorists. Before counselors in search of a personal
theory of counseling and psychotherapy can choose the best, they must become fully aware
of all that are available. The eclectic approach then is no shortcut to theory formulation.
Indeed, when properly traveled, it is one of the most difficult paths to follow.
All the above-mentioned theories are interwoven to such an extent that one cannot
compartmentalize one from the others during the process of counseling. They all aim at
one goal, that of creating a conducive environment for the client to find solutions to his
problems. As pointed out by Colledge (2000:264), that counseling theories work like a
web where one thread pulls the other. However, some differences have been noted, where
some theories give the counselor authority and power whilst others try and empower the
clients. According to my experiences with parents of children with hearing impairments,
most theories work so long as they are applied appropriately. The writer applied the ClientCentered Therapy and the Individual Psychology Theory and found them helpful. The
theories seem to have worked because they allowed parents an opportunity to review their
situations and workout solutions to their problems. Reality Therapy and Behavioral Theory
may produce short lived results in that clients, especially parents of children with hearing
impairments, may be dependent on the counselor for solutions since there is teaching and
conditioning.
2.5
APPLICATION OF THEORIES IN COUNSELING
Theories of counseling are usually insight or action-oriented because families of children
with hearing impairments in general do not require a highly psychiatric oriented approach.
Rather they appreciate the counselor’s general style of social behavior and the type of
relationship he develops with his client.
All counseling theories are based on the
‘therapeutic alliance’ (Van Hecke, 1994:523). Person-centered therapy known as Nondirective Psychotherapy, originally advanced by Rogers (1959:28), holds the view that at
some level of consciousness, patients or clients know what is best for them. Whereas
behavioral counseling, unlike the Rogerian approach, is a directive method. Parents are
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advised that they derive reward by making environmental changes, which will produce
positive behavioral changes. The client-centered approach views the client as one who is
rational, socialized and realistic. Rogers (1942:125) points out that the responsibility for
the counseling process rests with the client whilst the counselor facilitates rather than
directs his /her efforts at insight. The efforts and decisions regarding change of behavior
after counseling also remain the responsibility of the client. On the other hand, the action
theorists are much more problem-oriented and would try to find the problem then, using
various techniques, try to change behavior in the hope that the problem would be alleviated.
The counselor is expected to observe that the process from maladjustment to adjustment is
a self-regulatory one. The basic philosophy of the counselor is represented by an attitude
of respect for the client, for his capacity and right to self-direction and for the worth and
significance of each individual. There is the basic assumption in the theory that individuals
are capable of changing by themselves in ways they choose without the direction or
manipulation of the therapist.
The counselor is expected to accept the client as an
individual with all his/her conflicts and inconsistencies, bad and good points, being a
consistent person with no inherent contradictions between what he/she is and what he/she
says. The client must see the counselor as accepting and understanding. In this case the
counselor-client relationship will be seen by the client as safe, secure, free from threat and
supporting but not supportive.
2.6
GROUPS AND COUNSELING
Parents can be counseled as a group, as a family and as individuals. It is important to
understand that there are advantages and disadvantages with each and every approach.
Before getting into the details of group counseling, it is important to understand what
‘group’ means. To clarify the various labels in group counseling and guidance, including a
definition of group, I will use the work of Capuzzi and Gross (1997:166). They define
“group” as ‘a number of individuals bound together by a community of interest, purpose or
function’. However, within and across the professional disciplines engaged in the study
and practice of groups, there are wide variations in definition. To narrow the definition of
group for discussion in this study, it should be noted that counseling groups are
characterized by interaction. They are functional or goal-oriented groups. Counselors view
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various group activities as occurring at three levels: the guidance level, the counseling level
and the therapy level.
It is almost impossible to go it alone in today’s group-oriented, group-dominated and group
processed society. In fact today, to be well adjusted in a given society, usually means that
the individual has mastered the society’s norms of social interaction and of functioning
appropriately in groups. The following observations were drawn after a study of the
influence and dependence on groups of the individual’s functioning in today’s society.
Humans are group oriented. People are meant to complement, assist, and enjoy each other.
Groups are natural environments for these processes to occur. Humans seek to meet most
of their basic and personal social needs through groups, including the need to know and
grow mentally. Groups are a most natural and expeditious way to learn. Consequently
groups are influential in how a person grows, learns, and develops behavioral patterns and
adjustment techniques.
Apart from understanding the organization, influences and
dynamics of groups, group counseling may be more effective for some people and
individuals than individual counseling.
2.6.1
GROUP COUNSELING
More than 100 years ago the psychologist William James (1890) wrote ‘We are not only
gregarious animals liking to be in sight of our fellows, but we have an innate propensity to
get ourselves noticed, and noticed favorably, by our kind. The most dreadful punishment
would be that of being turned loose in society and remaining absolutely unnoticed by all
members within one’s environment. The importance of human relationships is meeting
basic needs and influencing personal development and adjustment of members of the
society. Most relationships are established and maintained in a group setting. For many,
daily adjustment problems and developmental needs also have their origins in groups.
Since most frequent and common human relationship experiences occur in groups, groups
also hold the potential to provide positive developmental and adjustment experiences for
many people.
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Group counseling is the routine adjustment to developmental experiences provided in a
group setting. It focuses on assisting counselors to cope with their day-to-day adjustment
and development concerns. Examples might focus on behavior modification, developing
personal relationship skills, concerns of human sexuality, values and attitudes, or career
decision-making.
Gazda (1989:304) suggests that group counseling can be growth
engendering insofar as it provides participation incentives and motivation to make changes
that are in the clients’ best interest. On the other hand, it is remedial for those persons who
have entered into a spiral of self-defeating behavior but who are capable of reversing the
spiral with counseling intervention.
2.6.2
GROUP GUIDANCE
Group guidance refers to group activities that focus on providing information or
experiences through a planned and/organized group activity (Ivey & Ivey, 1993: 45).
These include orientation groups, career exploration groups and classroom guidance.
Group guidance is also organized to prevent the development of problems. The content
could include educational, vocational, personal or social information, with the goal of
providing students with accurate information that will help them make more appropriate
plans and life decisions.
2.6.3
GROUP THERAPY
Group therapy provides intense experiences for people with serious adjustment, emotional
and developmental needs.
Therapy groups are usually distinguished from counseling
groups by both the length of time and the experience for those involved. Counselors devote
most of their time to help clients learn to recognize and cope with self-defeating behavior
and to master developmental tasks (Capuzzi & Gross, 1997:168). In group therapy parents
come together, help one another, engage in interaction, share experiences and ideas. The
counselor acts as a facilitator.
2.6.4
T-GROUPS
T-Groups are derivatives of training groups. They present the application of laboratory
training methods to group work. T-Groups represent an effort to create a society in
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miniature in which an environment is created for learning.
These are relatively
unstructured groups in which the participants become responsible for what they learn and
how they learn it. This learning experience frequently includes learning about one’s own
behavior in groups. A basic assumption appropriate to T-groups is that learning is more
effective when the individual establishes authentic relationships with others.
2.6.5
SENSITIVITY GROUPS
A sensitivity group is a form of T-group that focuses on personal and interpersonal issues
and on the personal growth of the individual. Sensitivity groups emphasize on self-insight,
which means that the central focus is not the group and its progress but rather the individual
member.
2.6.6
ENCOUNTER GROUPS
Encounter groups are also in the T-group family, but are more therapy oriented. Rogers
(1967:183) defines an encounter group as a group that stresses personal growth through the
development and improvement of interpersonal relationships via an experiential group
process. Such groups seek to release the potential of the participant in an intensive group.
With much freedom and little structure, the individual will gradually feel safe enough to
drop some of his defenses and facades, he will relate more directly on the feeling basis with
other members of the group, he will change in his personal attitudes and behavior and he
will subsequently relate more effectively to others in his everyday life situation. Extended
encounter groups are often referred to as marathon groups. The marathon encounter group
uses an extended block of time in which massed experience and accompanying fatigue are
used to break through the participants’ defenses. While encounter groups offer great
potential for the group members’ increased self-awareness and sensitivity to others, such
groups can also create high levels of anxiety and frustration. Therefore if encounter groups
are to have maximum potential and minimal risk, highly skilled and experienced counselor
leaders must conduct them. Parents of children with hearing impairments tend to be
defensive of their situations at the expense of facing reality and solving their problems
(Martin & Clark, 1996:184).
In the light of Martin and Clark’s assertions, group
counseling could help break such parents’ defenses.
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2.6.7
MINI-GROUPS
While two or more people can constitute a group, the term mini-group has become
increasingly popular to denote a counseling group that is smaller than usual. A mini-group
usually consists of one counselor and a maximum of four clients. Due to the smaller
number of participants, the potential exists for certain advantages resulting from the more
frequent and direct interaction of its members. Mercurio and Weiner (1975:68) indicate
that because of the increased dynamics that occur in a group of limited size, members of the
mini-group are less able to withdraw or hide, and interaction seems to be more complete
and responses fuller. Mini groups may either function as the singular treatment focus or be
used in conjunction with individual counseling.
2.6.8
GROUP PROCESS AND GROUP DYNAMICS
Two terms commonly used interchangeably in describing group activities are process and
dynamics, (Allen & Sawyer 1984:28). However, the terms have different meanings when
used to describe group-counseling activities. Group process is the continuous ongoing
movement towards achievement of its goals, representing the flow of the group from its
starting point to its termination. It is a means of describing or identifying the stages
through which the group passes. Group dynamics, on the other hand, refers to social forces
and interplay operative within the group at any given time. It describes the interaction of a
group, which may include a focus on the impact of leadership group roles and membership
participation in groups. It is a means of analyzing the interaction between and among the
individuals within a group. Group dynamics is also used on occasion to refer to certain
group techniques such as role-playing, decision-making, ‘rap’ sessions, and observation.
2.6.9
IN-GROUP AND OUT-GROUP
These are groups organized or overseen by counselors, but are important in understanding
influences on client behaviors. These groups can be based on almost any criteria, such as
socio-economic status, athletic or artistic accomplishments in a particular area of ability,
racial-cultural origins and so forth. In-groups are characterized by association largely
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groups. Such members are non-participants in athletics, drama, and/or have not been
invited by participants to become involved in such social clubs. In many counseling
situations, it is important for counselors to understand how clients see themselves and
others in terms of ‘in’ or ‘out’. Parents of children with hearing impairments normally
group themselves according to how they perceive their problems. Hegarty (1986:104)
asserts that parents who have similar problems tend to group and share their experiences.
2.6.10 SOCIAL NETWORKS
These are not groups in a formal sense: however, social networks result from the choices
that individuals make in becoming members of various groups.
Counselors may be
concerned with how these choices are made and their impact on individuals. Engaging in
social network analyses helps to determine how the interconnectedness of certain
individuals in a society can produce interaction patterns influencing others both within and
without the network. Social networks are important. Dale (1984:85) states that parents of
children with hearing impairments need continuous support during and after counseling
until they can cope on their own. This support can be offered by professional counselors,
members of the extended family, relatives and/or friends.
2.6.11 TRADITIONAL VERSUS WESTERN COUNSELING
Counseling has always been practiced and appears to have achieved some if not most of its
intended purposes. Most of the African countries have been using the traditional approach
and most of the European countries have been using the western approach. The two
approaches to counseling differed. What is interesting is that the approaches work towards
the same goal. A brief explanation of each approach is given and the advantages as well as
disadvantages are highlighted. The traditional counseling is based on that in Zimbabwe.
2.6.12 TRADITIONAL COUNSELING
Counseling has historically been an integral part of the traditional African culture,
Zimbabwe being one of the countries in which it was practiced. Its importance in the
traditional setting is reflected in the way it was institutionalized, with specific roles of
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counseling being allocated to particular people within families. These family members
include the aunts, uncles, grandparents, and elders in the community, traditional healers,
church-elders and ministers.
In the Zimbabwean indigenous culture, the family and
community interact as collective structures. The individual exists not as an individual, but
as part of a family and community system (Shumba, 1995:17).
Self-affirmation and
feelings of connection with the world are gained from family and community relationships
with which the individual participates. Because of this dynamic situation, there is a multigenerational and inter-community support system that is interdependent. Zimbabwean
society is dominated by the tenets of traditional culture, with approximately 80% of
Zimbabweans living in rural areas where traditional customs are strictly followed. Culture
demands and society enforces adherence to traditional values and practices. With increased
urbanization, many people in towns have acculturated into the western world-view and are
slowly drifting away from their cultural socialization (Makoni, 1996:3). While I do not
claim Zimbabwe to be totally representative of other African countries, most do follow a
similar pattern (Palmer & Varma, 1997:253). It is important to point out that the traditional
African culture is not homogeneous, with significant differences being noted among
different ethnic groups. These speak different languages and many practice rituals in
different ways.
The afore mentioned people involved in counseling are normally members of the extended
family and are deemed to have accumulated wisdom to counsel through experience in their
lives. In most cases they counsel people who are younger than themselves and over whom
they have authority. Before I discuss the role of such members of the extended family, it is
necessary to define the terms that have wider meanings such as ‘aunts, uncles, elders and
traditional healers.’ Aunt, normally refers to one’s father’s or mother’s sister, Uncle, refers
to one’s father and mother’s brother, father and their cousins. Elder, refers to all the elderly
people in the community who are respected for the role they play in mending relationships
and promoting harmony among family members, friends and members of the extended
family. Traditional healers refer to people who claim to communicate with spirits of dead
ancestors. Their role is supposed to be safe guarding people against witchcraft and evil
spirits. They also advise families and people in the community of possible causes and
solutions to misfortunes. Traditional counseling is widely practiced in the rural areas of
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African countries. It has encroached upon cities as many people have moved into towns to
find better living conditions.
In traditional counseling the people described above have specific counseling roles to play.
The aunts usually deal with marriage issues:
preparation for weddings and solving
problems in a marriage. They counsel and guide the women towards successful marriages.
As marriage counselors, their role complements that of the mother but is more pronounced
when a girl is preparing for marriage. During dating, the aunts guide young ladies and
discuss their love relationships as well as the suitability of their partners. The aunts teach
the young unmarried ladies about their bodies, sex, and sexual hygiene as well as the
behavior expected of a wife and mother. When the young ladies date, the aunts are heavily
involved until the marriage has taken place. They guide the young unmarried ladies
towards what is expected of a married woman who eventually becomes the mother of the
home. Uncles do the same with the young men who are preparing to marry and with those
who are already married but are experiencing problems. Elders in the community counsel
and guide families who clash in one-way or another. Church elders and traditional healers
help people who visit them or who are referred to them for help. It is these who normally
deal with parents of children with disabilities, for example those who are hearing impaired.
It is of paramount importance to emphasize that most of this counseling takes the form of
giving advice and suggesting solutions without necessarily giving clients the chance to
suggest possible solutions to their problems. It is expected that the clients implement fully
the advice, which is given to them. In the event that the outcome is not positive, the client
is normally the one to blame. The reason normally given is that either he/she (the client)
did not follow given instructions or did not do it properly. When it involves counseling of
parents whose child is hearing impaired, or disabled in any other way, a lot of causative
factors come into play. Sometimes the cause of the disability is blamed on the parents or
angry ancestors.
2.6.13 WESTERN COUNSELING
Western counseling is undertaken by trained, qualified counselors.
responsibility to seek counseling services, which are paid for.
It is the client’s
The service is by
appointment and it may be individual, group and/or family counseling. One or more
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counselors may be involved. The western way of counseling gives room for the counselor
to establish a relationship with the client by creating a relationship and then presenting the
problem. The counselor’s role is to listen and to widen the client’s problem by determining
all the people and systems involved. The counselor will then help the client to view his/her
behavior and hence his or her course of action. Clients are thus helped to find reasonable
solutions to their problems. The onus is on the client to change attitude and behavior as
well as solve his /her own problems.
The two approaches have some similarities and differences. In both systems, there is need
for mutual trust and a good relationship.
Both aim at resolving the problem and
confidentiality is emphasized. As for differences, in the western system the client has to
find solutions to his/her problems whereas in the traditional system the counselor or
counselors provide solutions. In the western system the counselor and client may be
strangers and yet in the traditional system the counselors and clients are normally relatives
or people who know one another well. In most cases counselors who operate in the western
system are qualified whereas traditional counselors are normally not trained. The western
approaches to counseling are based on strategies and techniques that were initially
developed by Anglo-European counselors. These techniques and strategies were designed
to cater for the needs of the majority groups. In the United States of America where there
is a fusion of diverse cultures, this monolithic approach has been found to be highly
inadequate because it ignores the needs and cultural concerns of the minority groups.
According to Nelson-Jones (1995:168) American counselors have therefore adopted a
pluralistic approach, which calls for a multi-cultural perspective where in counselors are to
be creative and flexible without necessarily ignoring the commonality of human beings. A
critique of the appropriateness of western approaches to counseling in African countries has
been advanced by a number of African counselors (Locke, 1990:32). They argue that
western approaches are not appropriate to the situation and the needs of the majority in
African countries South of the Sahara.
The basis of their argument is that western
techniques and strategies are sophisticated, time consuming and expensive, therefore
catering for only a small elite group. However, it must be noted that, due to urbanization
and educational developments, most Africans in urban areas are practicing the western
system and/or both. Some have borrowed certain aspects from both systems. Although
there is no universal culture in Africa, there are some basic common elements found in their
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cultural beliefs and practices that involve the role of the extended family. However, it must
be pointed out that in their study, McGuiness, et al. (2001:298) with students from different
cultures, noted that humanistic counseling when employed correctly does not violate
cultural boundaries.
In Zimbabwe prior to the 20th century, traditional counseling had been the most common
practice among the Black Africans (Shumba, 1995:19). The 20th century saw the gradual
spread of western counseling (Makoni, 1996:5), and the establishment of free guidance and
counseling by Non Governmental Organizations as well as the establishment of counseling
agencies. To date both the traditional and the western systems are practiced with the
former being well established and the latter gaining ground. As pointed out before, this is
mainly a product of urbanization and educational developments.
2.7
COUNSELING
PARENTS
OF
CHILDREN
WITH
HEARING
IMPAIRMENTS
As stated in chapter 1, I will use the explanations by Hardman, Drew and Egan (1984:419),
Hardman, Drew and Egan (1993:278), Tucker and Nolan (1984:108), Nolan and Tucker
(1981:78), Moores (1987:182), Quigley and Kretschmer (1982:78), and Allen and Allen
(1979:34) to explain the conceptualization of “parents of children with hearing
impairments”.
These authors have written extensively on children with hearing
impairments and their families. I will use their combined conceptualization to inform my
study. All the above concur that parents of a child with hearing impairments, of course
unexpected, go through feelings of shock, guilt, inferiority, denial and in some cases
confusion. Hardman, Drew and Egan (1984:419) assert that the birth of a disordered infant
is likely to alter the family as a social unit in a variety of ways. Parents and siblings may
react with shock, disappointment, anger, depression, guilt, and/or confusion, to mention
only a few. Relationships between family members often change, in either a positive or a
negative manner. The impact of such an event is great, and it is unlikely that the family
unit will ever be the same. Hardman, Drew, Egan and Wolf (1993:278), further endorse
that such parents may consult professionals, doctors, traditional healers, counselors,
specialist teachers, physiotherapists, audiologists, psychologists and others, searching for
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treatment, correction and any other help that they can obtain in aiding them to raise their
child.
Parents of children with hearing impairments need counseling to help offset their reactions
to the child’s handicap. As pointed out by Martin and Clark (1996:357) they (parents)
become patients. There is ample evidence that at the initial diagnosis of hearing loss, logic
often takes a back seat to emotion and families become incapable of assimilating and
processing the new and stressful facts (Harry, 1997:87). As important as it is that families
are given the data they need to have on which to base their decisions regarding their child,
it is useless to force–feed individuals who cannot digest facts that carry an emotional
message.
Even when emotions do not appear to dominate the counseling session,
information is often misinterpreted or forgotten (Martin, Krueger and Bernstein, 1990:106).
Hearing parents naturally expect to have children with normal hearing and therefore
become worried about their family’s future based on the discovery of hearing loss which,
more often than not is unanticipated. Emotions can cloud logical thinking and perception,
therefore the counselor must determine whether parents are prepared to accept and
understand new ideas and information before they embark on the actual counseling. Apart
from emotional reactions, it is apparent that parents have counseling and guidance needs
related to the practical steps they could take to help their child benefit from amplification.
The goal of the counselor is to help parents accept the situation, achieve independence and
learn to solve problems engendered by their child’s hearing loss. The great diversity of
reactions and family situations requires a worker who uses counseling skills effectively and
is capable of handling a variety of responses. Recovery rate in anxiety type cases is
reported as faster where the counselor is warm, permissive, interested in and likes the client
and is able to empathize with him. Studies carried out on counselors who worked with
parents of children with hearing impairments, Tucker and Nolan (1984:120), Martin and
Clark (1996:186) and Peavy (1996:149), indicate success, not due to particular techniques,
but dependent more on the personality and attitudes of the counselor. According to Clark
(1994:73) many non-professional counselors lack the necessary skills and a positive
attitude, when it comes to dealing with families of children with hearing impairments.
These non-professional counselors include physicians, dentists, teachers, attorneys, the
clergy and friends. Uncertified counselors with basic training in counseling and hearing
impairment, who do not assume authority, who empathize with clients and adopt a positive
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attitude, form a warm relationship, attach value to clients, accommodate clients’ emotions
and create a conducive atmosphere for clients to find solutions to their problems, do well in
counseling (Blocher, 2000:209). I tend to go along with Blocher’s line of thought because
a study by McCormick (1986:143) in the United Kingdom where he screened children with
hearing impairments using physical methods, with the use of trained health visitors, also
indicated that there was no difference in the results obtained by health visitors and those
obtained by audiologists.
It is important for parents of children with hearing impairments to be referred to counselors
who have knowledge about hearing impairment. Peavy (1996:136) points out that effective
counseling should assist the individuals to clarify various aspects of their life-worlds. He
further spelt out these aspects:
•
Reducing mental confusion and doubt, paving way for decision-making.
•
Enabling a forum of ‘self-encounter’, which helps one to make distinctions about
self and
•
other, and self and ambient world, thus making one understand his personal reality
and life experiences in context.
•
Alerting individuals on how they are being influenced by the field of power in
which they are embedded.
•
Provides hope and encouragement, since individuals without hope have no
windows in their future
•
Identifying the pros and cons of any coping strategy.
•
Provides comfort and/or support. Comfort is a deep human need that can be met
through church
•
2.7.1
Gatherings, family clans and neighborhood groups.
HOW PARENTS ACCESS COUNSELING SERVICES
Parents can access counseling services by approaching individuals in the counseling
profession, counseling service organizations, churches and/or special schools where
counselors operate. Some families prefer to invite counselors into their homes and work
from there. Others prefer to visit counseling clinics where they can work with one or more
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counselors. Kirk, et al. (1997:157) point out that in the initial stages parents have no
direction of what to do, therefore they rely on advice from those who have or claim to have
superior knowledge about hearing impairment than they themselves. Sometimes they are
reluctant to take counseling because they are not sure of what they will be told, for they
will be afraid of the worst.
A study by Howe (1996:127) in the United States of America, with 34 families who had
children with disabilities, produced important observations in counseling. Out of the 34
families that were offered counseling, 23 accepted the offer for therapy. Eleven declined
family therapy offer or failed to keep their first appointment and therefore were not
considered. Ten of the 11 who declined therapy accepted to be interviewed, as well as 22
out of the 23 who accepted therapy. The purpose of the study was to seek the clients’
views on family therapy. Most families who dropped out of the program or remained
anxious had not engaged right from the beginning.
The families were put into four
categories, namely
•
the non-takers who were offered therapy but did not accept it,
•
the early leavers, who began therapy but withdrew after one, two or three sessions,
•
the ambivalent, who remained in therapy but were not fully engaged, and
•
the relaxed and satisfied who became fully engaged and remained in treatment.
Interviews with the second group, the early leavers, revealed that family members
experienced considerable anxiety over tape recording and video recording. They were also
not sure of what they were going to meet in the counseling situation. The methods used
and the manner the sessions were run was of some concern. The place of counseling
mattered. They preferred home rather than clinic. The style of questioning and the use of
supervisors who remained unseen raised the family’s feelings of anxiety. This clearly
indicates that counseling is a sensitive area, which needs careful planning and handling. It
is important that clients are counseled under conditions that do not raise anxiety. As
proposed by Gartner, et al. (1991), I believe that counseling should be conducted in nonthreatening environment where nobody knows or suspects that there is a third party
listening.
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Another study carried out by Davis (1993:128) focused upon the professional – parent
relationship and the parents’ experiences. The psychosocial adaptation of parents was of
central concern to every professional simply because of the crucial role of parents in all
aspects of the care and treatment of the child.
One group of parents only attended
counseling sessions, but did not develop social relationships. Nor did they get extra
support outside counseling sessions. Another group received counseling, developed social
relationships with counselors and also received constant support. A number of parents
from the first group remarked that after the counseling session or sessions they were left to
deal with their problems alone and the counselors disappeared forever.
Parents who
received counseling and support outside counseling sessions indicated that it is necessary to
retain support from counselors. Counselors who employed the partnership model, had
mutual respect, kept their lines of communication open, were honest and had an impact on
their clients. Church counselors who had close contact with their clients and continued to
support them socially, morally and physically proved to be effective and had good
counseling results.
On evaluating the two groups, the first group of parents that did not get much support
indicated that their situations did not change much. The second group that obtained a lot of
support indicated that their situations changed in individual and family life. They changed
in the way in which they perceived situations and in the way they planned for their
children. They developed a new understanding of their problem which enabled them to set
clear goals, to plan how to achieve them, to implement the plans and to evaluate the results
at every stage. Their objectives included outings on their own or with the children and
family trips. They also set goals for the future of their child with hearing impairment.
Some parents expressed that they faced pressure from members of the extended family,
friends, relatives and professionals at the expense of their own views. This is a clear
indication that counseling should not be terminated before the clients are free to go it alone
and are confident enough to handle further problems and obstacles as they come. The
study also indicates the importance of the relationship between the counselor and the clients
during and after counseling. It is vital that the counselor makes follow-ups of clients
counseled to find what progress is being made. The inclusion of close relatives and friends
in counseling sessions should be considered. I am of the opinion that where possible
counseling should involve the close network of members of the extended family.
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It is important to situate this study within the broader context in which it took place. In the
next section I will explore the political and socio-economic status of Zimbabwe during the
period of the study.
2.7.2
ZIMBABWE IN THE PERIOD 1999 TO 2000
In Zimbabwe the beginning of political disturbances, constitutional changes and the
collapse of the economy characterize the period 1999 to 2000. The formation of the strong
Movement for Democratic Change political party (MDC) forced the ruling Zimbabwe
African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU PF) to use and engage haphazardly the land
redistribution programme in order for them to gain political mileage (Zimbabwe Country
Report, 2001:4). The ruling party misused the long overdue land reform programme to win
votes. White farmers were displaced and their farms were designated for distribution to the
so-called landless blacks, who turned out to be party supporters and high-ranking
government officials (Zimbabwe Country Report, 2001:8)
Zimbabwe heavily relies on agricultural products, and therefore the seizure of white owned
farms and the giving of them to people who do not have either the knowledge or the
equipment to farm plunged the country’s economy into crisis. This is the main reason for
the collapse of the health, welfare and social security systems. The deterioration of the
welfare system has greatly affected the education system, particularly in the area of special
needs where poor parents of children with disabilities relied on the social welfare to feed
and educate their children. The present status in Zimbabwe is that parents have to pay for
both education and health services and those who cannot afford to do so keep their children
at home.
This study is not greatly affected by the system in the sense that when the data was
collected, parents were already paying for the services. Economic hardships had already
started paralyzing the health, welfare and social services. However, if the same study had
been conducted in 2003, the results were likely to be different due to increased hardships in
general and educational facilities for children with hearing impairments in particular. The
effects of brain drain of qualified personnel in special schools might have had a negative
impact on the quality of education given to children and on the counseling parents obtain
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from special schools. Given this brief background, the counseling of parents of children
with hearing impairments in Zimbabwe will be discussed.
2.7.3
COUNSELING PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS IN ZIMBABWE
According to my experiences as an educator, administrator, lecturer in Special Education
and counselor in schools and with a counseling agency in Zimbabwe, most of the
counseling of parents who have children with hearing impairments was done in special
schools because parents had no idea of what to do with the children thereafter. From 1984
to 1997 I worked as a teacher of children with hearing impairments at one of the schools
that belong to the Jairos Jiri Association for people with disabilities. This association caters
for blind, deaf, physically disabled and mentally disabled people. The association has
branches all over Zimbabwe with centres in all the main towns. They also have primary,
secondary and vocational schools to cater for people with disabilities from all regions of the
country.
I used to move from centre to centre during the school holidays to offer
counseling services to parents and students who needed help in that area. I was in charge
of counseling parents and students at the school (Naran Centre) where I was stationed.
In 1993 I moved to Harare where I worked at a private school as a specialist teacher and
school counselor for students and parents who had children with disabilities. In 1994 I
studied a practical counseling course with a non-governmental counseling organization
(CONNECT). On this course I had to carry out practical counseling sessions and record
them with the clients’ consent. The recordings on the tapes were marked and feedback was
given.
I also lectured at the University of Zimbabwe in the department of Special
Education. Counseling is one of the courses I taught. As a lecturer I supervised students
on counseling sessions and marked their assignments. CONNECT also engaged me as a
trainer and marker for those who were taking counseling courses. These experiences have
widened my mental horizon and increased my knowledge in dealing with children, parents
and families in counseling.
Specialist teachers who were not formally trained counselors carried out most of the
counseling in Special schools. The counseling sessions were a ten to fifteen minute once
off. I experienced this during visits to special schools as a university external examiner for
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one of the Teachers’ Colleges that offered a Special Education course.
From my
knowledge and experiences during and after training in counseling, the teachers who
provided counseling services lacked the necessary skills for them to help parents
effectively. This was also indicated by Maluwa-Banda (1998:68) in his study in Malawi.
The counseling was not planned and did not involve all the members of the family who
were affected by the child’s impairment. The views of the parents were not taken into
consideration, it was simply telling them what to do. The parents seemed to look forward
to the experts’ advice and never thought they had anything important to contribute. This
happened in all special schools for the hearing impaired in Zimbabwe. The pattern of
parents coming back to the schools for advice and help had continued from as far back as
1980 and no one knows when this practice will stop. Some of the parents just “dumped”
the children at special schools and only pitched up during the child’s final year in either the
primary or secondary school. The situation has slightly improved in the sense that from
1996 a few teachers, at least one from every special school for the hearing impaired, have
qualified in child counseling. As pointed out by Richards (2000:144) the training given to
‘counselors’ in Zimbabwe, who work in schools, hospitals and the police, is quite
inadequate. She goes on to suggest that, although the time is short, the child-counseling
course has intensive practical sessions that are of great help to the trainees. The counseling
is either done with individuals or groups of parents.
2.8
COUNSELING ORGANIZATIONS IN ZIMBABWE
Counseling organizations and agents in this piece of research refers to Churches, Special
Schools, Hospitals and Counseling Centers.
Such organizations provide counseling
services to the general population. These organizations offer emergency, education and
consultation services.
Centers concentrate on common problems in that particular
community and universal problems are also accommodated. Some of the agencies include
traditional centers such as drop in, and open door, whilst others even offer temporary
accommodation. Zimbabwe has six examples of such centers: three in Harare, two in
Bulawayo and one in Gweru. Counselors in the centers are used to the culture and beliefs
of the people in the community, which makes their services effective (Blatt, 1976:36).
Outreach programs are organized by a number of counseling organizations that train
counselors.
They run short courses in different regions and longer courses for a
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qualification. Outreach programs help people who cannot access the services since most
organizations and agents are established in towns and big cities. This factor was also
emphasized by Charema and Peresuh (1996:76) when they pointed out the need for mobile
units in rural areas to support parents of children with disabilities. It would also be a good
idea for these agencies to decentralize the services. This would help parents of children
with disabilities to access guidance and counseling services within their rural areas. Those
parents who cannot make it to big cities due to lack of transport fares would also benefit.
It is understood that counseling organizations and agencies deal with widely diverse
populations.
This encompasses people of different races and cultural backgrounds.
Organizations offer a wide range of services from short-term ordinary family problems to
agent ones that need immediate attention.
These services include Crisis, Facilitative,
Prevention, Developmental, Employment, Correctional, Rehabilitation, Marriage and
Family as well as Pastoral counseling. Crisis issues relate to concerns about suicide, drugs
or rejection by a loved one (Mbiti, 1990:37 and Locke, 1990:21). In this case the counselor
provides individual counseling, personal support and/or referral of the client to appropriate
resources. Facilitative issues relate to job placement, career/academic concerns and marital
adjustment. Prevention issues involve sex education, self-awareness and career awareness.
Developmental issues relate to self-concept, child abuse, sexual abuse, murder and death.
Capuzzi and Gross (1999:67) assert that a number of key features must be included in any
effective counseling organization and center.
This view was supported by Nystul
(1999:127) and Wallace (1986:34) when they emphasized that counseling organizations
should be situated in places easy to locate and have a clear outline of the services provided.
Some of the key features cited by Nystul (1999:132) include:
•
Quantitative analysis of the population to be served, so that the number of people
to be helped and their specific needs can be determined.
•
Case management, to ensure that someone is responsible for coordinating and
monitoring necessary services.
•
A program of support and rehabilitation to provide services appropriate for each
client’s age, functional level, and individual needs.
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•
Centers should be located in a setting that is easy for community members to reach,
so that they view it and associate with it as theirs. This differs from having to
travel long distances that take time and money.
•
Counseling agencies should have a team that includes psychiatrists, counseling
psychologists and social workers.
2.9
MARRIAGE AND FAMILY COUNSELING
Although the marriage vows read that married people are only separated by death, the high
divorce rate throughout the world (Howard, 1996:18) indicates that thousands of couples
have decided they cannot wait that long to split up. Certainly an abundance of statistical
empirical evidence indicates that family discord and divorce is continuing to increase
(Goldenberg & Goldenberg, 1991:211). We can conclude that the traditional image of the
home and family as a cozy nest of love, security, togetherness and never ending happiness
has been severely battered in recent generations.
The need for counselors who can
effectively counsel families in such a way that the family fiber is strengthened is greater
than ever before. A family that has a child with disabilities is more likely to experience
marital problems due to the demands and change of routines caused by such a child in the
family (Cristiani, 1995:66). Therefore there is need for effective counseling to help the
family hold together without necessarily blaming one another, as is generally the case.
Stewart (1986:110) contend that a family with a child with disabilities should be helped to
adapt to the situation, engage in tension-reducing mechanisms and coping methods in order
to relieve themselves of tension and anxiety. A professional counselor must use skills,
logic, and background knowledge to help parents define the problem and find a solution.
Providing effective counseling assistance to families and couples in today’s complex and
stressful society is a challenging and difficult task, frequently complicated by cultural
traditions, environmental pressures and advice from non-professionals. While individual
counseling focuses on the individual person and his or her concerns, family therapy tends to
focus on ‘the family system.’ Even where only one member of the family is being
counseled, if the counseling is concerned primarily with the family system, it can be
viewed as family counseling. As pointed out by Blocher (2000:248) family therapy focuses
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on the communication process, power balances and imbalances, influence process, structure
for conflict resolution, and the current function of the family as a system. The goal of
family therapy is to effect change not simply in an individual within a family but rather in
the structure of the family and the sequencing of behavior among its members.
An
outgrowth of the increased recognition of the extent and popularity of marital problems has
been the development of a specialty area within the field of marriage counseling. A survey
carried out by Peltier and Vale (1986:134) and Gladding, Burgraf and Fennell (1987:117)
on course offerings in counselor training reported family counseling as the most frequently
offered course, especially where a family has a child with disabilities. This need could be
attributed to a lack of guidance and/or poor support from family members. Frustration and
little knowledge of what to do with a child with disabilities could also necessitate the need
for counseling. It is clear that when a family is in such a situation they need counseling.
2.10
PASTORAL COUNSELING
From the standpoint of sheer numbers and geographical coverage, pastoral counseling
provides a significant resource. Not only are clergy members generally available to listen
to the concerns and personal problems of their church members but also are frequently the
first source people turn to when in trouble. Many churches offer extensive counseling on
marriage, divorce, widowhood, drug and alcohol abuse and other family problems. It is
necessary for pastoral counselors to be trained so that they acquire the necessary skills for
counseling. My experiences in my church organization in Zimbabwe are that most of the
so-called church counselors are people who are not trained in counseling but have been
talked to about counseling. It was only in 1996 that the church started to hire and utilize
professional counselors in their youth programs. This is one of the reasons why I explore
the qualifications of counselors as one of the tenets in this study. In recognition of the
counseling need, many theological training programs include courses in pastoral
counseling, related psychology and general counseling subjects. For obvious reasons it is
recommended that all church members who are engaged in counseling should be trained
and qualified if they are to effectively execute their duties. A study by Maluwa-Banda
(1998:76) in Malawi, with 20 school counselors who did not have any formal training or
qualifications in counseling indicates that all the participants identified common key
problems which compromised their effectiveness. All the counselors concurred that lack of
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formal training in counseling, lack of adequate time for guidance and counseling and lack
of practical skills in counseling were a hindrance to effective delivery of guidance and
counseling in their schools. Although the study was carried out in schools, the situation is
likely to be the same in churches, hospitals, welfare organizations and other nongovernmental organizations. As indicated in Maluwa-Banda’s 1998 study, it is likely that
if “counselors” who counseled parents of children with hearing impairments from special
schools or counseling organizations were not trained, the service they offered might have
been affected by their (counselors) lack of confidence.
2.11
EMPLOYMENT COUNSELING
Employment counseling involves counseling school leavers and people from war situations
preparing them to enter the job market. Such counseling includes securing job leads,
recording job specifications, referring clients to employers, assessing client level of
motivation, assessing client readiness for employment and surveying job opportunities.
2.12
REHABILITATION COUNSELING
Rehabilitation counseling involves counseling the disabled. History reflects the admiration
that society has always held for those who have overcome physical disabilities to achieve
notable success. The man (Franklin D Roosevelt) who was paralyzed by polio in both legs
at the age of 39 later became the president of the United States of America and a wartime
world leader. The woman (Helen Keller) who was deaf and blind from the age of two, later
became a successful author and lecturer. The deaf musician (Ludwig van Beethoven) and
the amputee actress (Sarah Bernhardt) are a few of the people who reached beyond their
disability (Muthard & Salomone, 1969:11). The achievements of these and others despite
their disabilities were notable, but has history failed to record the tragic loss to humanity of
those people whose potential was destroyed by the lack of attention to their disabilities.
Since world war two, rehabilitation counseling has expanded into public agencies so that
these individuals may receive special counseling assistance in overcoming their disabilities.
It is also important to consider rehabilitation counselor placement, affective counseling,
group procedures, vocational counseling and medical referral. The counselor should not
only be knowledgeable in counseling but also in understanding disabilities and the pressure
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it exerts on parents.
Hosie, Patterson and Hollingsworth (1989:175) point out that
rehabilitation centers are increasingly providing services to individuals with disabilities.
Counselors in these centers help clients overcome deficiencies in their skills, which are due
to their disabilities. Sometimes they work with a special type of client, such as the deaf,
blind, mentally ill or the physically disabled. Vocational rehabilitation counseling seeks to
help clients with disabilities prepare for gainful employment and appropriate job
placement. They coordinate the effort of community agencies on the clients’ behalf and
those operating in this role function as resource persons.
2.13
A CRITIQUE OF COUNSELING ORGANIZATIONS
Howard (1996:6) in his book ‘Challenges to Counseling and Psychotherapy’, points out
that professionals in most counseling organizations have not had the time, attention or
research lavished on them to develop solid professional frameworks capable of
underpinning the escalating demands made on them.
In today’s society, alienation,
loneliness and meaninglessness are rife. This is demonstrated by society’s developments in
counseling and psychotherapy. Like anybody else riding on a rough tide, parents of
children with hearing impairments may benefit from turning to counselors who can support
them in managing their day-to-day lives and family relationships. Theories and methods to
alleviate parents’ worries are many, while critical analysis of these methods, on the part of
parents is almost non-existent.
Howard (1996:7) further alleges that these care
professionals are too busy perfecting and packaging their products, and their clients are too
pre-occupied consuming them, to wonder about the justification of all this effort. The
emphasis is on income rather than outcome, on survival rather than on rationale. Howard
(1996:9) points out that when caring, cash and consumption go hand in hand, the most
intensively personal attention inevitably attaches to those who can pay for it. There is so
much stress in simply trying to deal with human distress all around that there is little time
or energy left to oversee the situation and take stock of it. It is not easy to oversee a
situation in which one is deeply involved especially when one requires parents to warn
others of the pitfalls and the dangers they are collectively running into. Desperate times
sometimes require desperate measures and it is probably true that parents are fairly
desperate before they consult a counselor or therapist.
Parents are desperate to find
solutions to the personal problems they feel surrounded, invaded and overwhelmed by.
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They are urgently looking for a way out of the humdrum and difficulties that wear them
out. In one way or another they are yearning to find some sense of comfort and meaning in
a world that seems increasingly set against them. Counseling and therapy are the last resort
for those who experience such agony and anguish.
Faced with the demand for the services and the mushrooming of counseling services in
family set ups, churches, job situations and/organizations, I feel the priority is to begin by
setting higher standards of training and practice in order to offer effective services. I feel
that if groups of individuals or organizations are to offer guidance and counseling to
parents of children with hearing impairments, they should have all the necessary modalities
in place. These include qualified personnel in counseling, clearly outlined counseling
programmes and referral centres for further help. It may be unrealistic to expect the
existing counseling organizations that have an obligation to secure their identity, to
resonate with this challenging tone. However, with time, on employing new counselors
and therapists, organizations would be aware of the heed to have comprehensive training
programmes.
2.14
SUMMARY
I have discussed the counseling theories and techniques in relation to counseling parents of
children with hearing impairments, by individuals, churches, special schools and
counseling organizations. This leads us into the methods that were used to conduct the
study.
---oOo---
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3
3.1
METHODOLOGY OF THE STUDY
INTRODUCTION
In this chapter I will italicize all the methodological descriptions that have already been
explored in chapter 1 of this thesis, in order to provide a link with the discussion of the
rationale of these choices and the consequences for the thesis. Following each italicized
section then, will be a further section on the rationale and consequence of each choice.
•
I will also give an overview of the research design of the study, as well as the
methodological decisions.
•
Both dependent and independent variables are spelt out.
•
The population and the sample are given.
•
A further explanation of how the sample was selected is offered.
•
The procedure followed in data gathering and the methods used are presented.
•
An explanation of how the instrument used was developed, and scored, is offered.
•
This is followed by methods of data analysis and ethical considerations in research.
The main focus of this study was on the ways in which parents of children with hearing
impairments access guidance and counseling. Stewart (1986:109), Luterman (1990:127)
and Locke (1990) strongly support the importance of counseling parents of children with
disabilities, from an early age up to the time the parents are able to cope with their children.
Early guidance and counseling helps parents to accept, cope and plan for their children.
But in order to receive guidance and counseling parents need to access these services – the
focus of this study.
3.1.1
RESEARCH DESIGN: SURVEY
This research was conducted by means of surveys and interviews.
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PILOT STUDY
PARTICIPANTS (68)
•
40 university
students
•
20 parents
•
8 lectures
DATA COLLECTION
•
Questionnaire
responses
•
Interviews
DATA ANALYSIS
•
Analyzing responses
in relation to positive
and negative questions
•
Analyzing content
and language of
questionnaire
•
Analyzing the clarity
of questions
MAIN STUDY WITH PARENTS
PARTICIPANTS
•
300 parents, both
single parents and
couples
DATA COLLECTION
•
2 Questionnaires
•
206 Interviews
•
Parents’ own views
DATA ANALYSIS
•
Analyzing
questionnaire responses
•
Analyzing
reliability, validity and
consistency.
•
Analyzing
participants’ views
qualitatively
MAIN STUDY WITH COUNSELING SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
PARTICIPANTS
•
28 counseling
service organizations
DATA COLLECTION
•
1 Questionnaire
DATA ANALYSIS
•
Analyzing
participants’ responses
•
Analyzing
counselors’ qualifications
•
Analyzing the views
of counseling
organizations
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PRINCIPLES OF RESEARCH DESIGN
RESEARCH DESIGN
Objectives:
•
To find how parents of children with hearing impairments accessed
counseling in Zimbabwe
•
To investigate whether parents who received or did not receive
counseling were aware of organizations that offered guidance and
counseling
•
To find parents’ perceptions on whether or not counseling helped
them to cope with their children
•
•
To establish the counselors’ qualifications
To explore parents’ recommendations on how counseling could be
made more accessible
Paradigm
•
Positivist
Techniques
•
Descriptive statistics supported by qualitative analysis of interview
data.
•
Sampling, data collection, data analysis
•
Survey Design
3.2
THE SURVEY METHOD
3.2.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
I chose the survey method because I found it to be the most appropriate methodology to
explore this theme. The study covered the main cities in the country and involved a
reasonably large but manageable sample from all over the country. This enabled me to
identify attributes of a population from small groups of individuals as presented in Fowler
(1988), Babbie (1990), Sudman and Bradburn (1986) and Fink and Kosecoff (1985). The
method helped to make estimated assertions about the nature of the total population from
which the sample had been selected. It is also possible to generalize from a sample to a
population, drawing inferences about some characteristics, attitudes, or behaviors of this
population. In depth interviews were used to cross check questionnaire responses. As cited
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by Babbie (1990:243), general to all surveys using participants, the use of a survey enabled
me to involve in the sample participants from different places within a reasonably short
time. Within a reasonable length of time, I was able to collect data from participants in
five major cities in the country.
3.2.2
CONSEQUENCES
This method was extremely efficient at providing large amounts of data, at relatively low
cost, in a short period of time. It also allowed anonymity, which encouraged frankness
where sensitive issues were involved. Direct administration to a group produced a high rate
of response, which was close to 100%. I had an opportunity to explain the study and
answer questions that the participants asked before they completed the questionnaire. It is
important to point out that this method has some disadvantages.
I was not one hundred percent sure whether participants necessarily reported their actual
beliefs and attitudes. Because there is likely to be a social desirability response bias, people
responding in a way that shows them in a good light. Surveys also do not guarantee future
reliability since their main emphasis is what happened in the past. As pointed out by
Hanson (1980:68) a lack of relationship between attitudes and behavior also makes it
difficult for the researcher to generalize from what people say to what they actually do.
3.3
INTERVIEWS
3.3.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
I chose to conduct interviews in an informal way in order to cross check questionnaire
responses. I had worked out a set of questions in advance but was free to modify their
order based upon my perception of what seemed most appropriate in the context of the
conversation. I could also change the way the questions were worded and give explanations
where needed. I had the option to leave out particular questions that seemed inappropriate
with a particular interviewee. Additional questions could be included as a follow up to
obtain required particular information. It took me 15 days to complete interviews with
parents of children with hearing impairments, who had volunteered to take part. Most of the
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interviews were conducted at the five special schools and only a few were conducted at
units were children with hearing impairments were integrated. Face-to-face interviews
offered the possibility of modifying one’s line of inquiry by following up on interesting
responses and investigating underlying motives in a way that self-administered
questionnaires cannot. Interviews require careful preparation such as arrangements to visit,
securing the necessary permissions, rescheduling and confirming appointments and
working out the time for each interview. During the interview process, ‘bracketing’ was
applied, mainly to suspend prejudices and biases in order to approach all interviews openly.
‘Horizontalization’ was also applied to ensure that all sources of data were treated as equal.
I was aware of how preconceived views on certain issues could easily influence behavior
and contaminate the data, for example the tone of voice, facial expression and nodding of
head of the interviewer. Therefore this was minimized as much as possible.
3.3.2
CONSEQUENCES
I could pick non-verbal cues that provided additional information and gave messages that
helped in understanding the verbal responses, possibly changing or even, in extreme cases,
reversing the meaning. I also managed to probe and gain access to the information that
may be difficult to reach by using other methods. Interviews provided rich and highly
illuminating material. Due to person-to-person interaction in the interview the quality of
data is likely to have been enhanced. However, one of the shortcomings of interviews is
that they are time-consuming and in consequent the process took some time to complete.
On analyzing the data, lack of standardization, if the data are not carefully handled, might
inevitably raise concerns about reliability and bias.
It might not be fair to compare
responses when different subjects are asked different follow up questions. Some of the
interview data may also be hard to categorize.
3.4
POPULATION
The population comprised of all families that had children with hearing impairments who
were receiving primary or secondary education in special schools and units at the time of
the study. I chose to involve all such parents in order for the study to include people of
different backgrounds and ethnic groups who face more or less similar problems. Through
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the schools’ administration records the population was established to be 900 families at the
time of the study. However, there was no guarantee that all these families were going to
take part in the study since involvement was purely voluntary. It is also important to point
out that parents whose children were not attending special schools and units during the
time of the study are not included in this population. For those included in the population,
Masvingo had 194, Harare 197, Gweru 176, Bulawayo 170 and Mutare 163 parents (n =
900). Five major hospitals from the five cities, 30 churches that claimed to have proper
counseling services (six from each city) five special schools from the following towns:
Bulawayo, Gweru, Masvingo, Mutare and Harare and three counseling agencies, all from
Harare, were also to be included.
3.5
SAMPLE (n = 300)
The sample comprised families of children with hearing impairments in special schools and
units. I used the sample size formula available in Babbie (1990:69) and Fowler
(1988:124). Simple random sampling was used to obtain the required sample. Parents
were grouped according to the provinces they came from, Masvingo, Harare, Gweru,
Bulawayo and Mutare. A random number table was used to prepare cards that were used
to randomly select the required sample. Cards were numbered and put in a box. Five
boxes labeled with the names of the five towns were mounted in different places outside the
administration block. Each box had cards with valid and invalid numbers and parents
were asked to pick a card from the box labeled with the name of the town in their province.
All parents who volunteered to take part in the study and picked valid numbers up to 300
were considered in the sample. Invalid numbers had the value of their first three digits
bigger than 300. If both a husband and wife took part in the study, they picked up one card
and completed one questionnaire. The sampling procedure was conducted in five towns at
special schools for children with hearing impairments, where parents were gathered.
These five special schools were in the following cities, Bulawayo, Harare, Masvingo,
Mutare and Gweru. The sample also included five hospitals, one from each town. All five
were included since parents of children with hearing impairments were referred to them for
counseling and further help. The only three registered counseling agencies, all in Harare,
took part in the study. Fifteen churches, three from each city, were included in the study.
These were also sampled through a simple random sampling procedure. Six cards were
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made for churches in each city that claimed to run proper counseling sessions. Three of
these were numbered. The three churches whose church members picked numbered cards
were selected to take part in the study. This was done in all the five cities that took part in
the study. Parents from rural and urban areas were also involved in this study.
3.5.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
The simple sampling procedure was used in this study in order to give each parent an equal
chance of being included. The objective was to include parents from different ethnic and
socio-economic backgrounds, rural, semi-urban and urban areas. As stated by Salkind
(2000:87) the simple random sampling is the most common type of probability sampling
procedure and allows each member of the population an equal and independent chance of
being selected to be part of the sample. Undoubtedly the random procedure is most
rigorous, enabling one to generalize the findings of a study to the entire population
associated with the study (Babbie, 1990:74). In this particular study I have no intention of
generalizing the results because different ‘counselors’ took part in counseling.
Their
differing skills and qualifications may have had a different impact on clients.
3.5.2
CONSEQUENCES
One result of using a simple stage sampling procedure was that it allowed me direct access
to the participants. The procedure used considered that the subjects selected in the sample
reflected the true characteristics of the population as a whole, both in physical attributes
and socio-economic status (Cohen & Manion, 1989:101). The use of the table of random
numbers is a useful innovation, since the basis on which the numbers in the table are
generated is totally unbiased.
However, one problem associated with this particular
sampling method is that a complete list of the biographical details of the entire population
is needed and this is not readily available.
3.6
VARIABLES
Independent variables in this research include parents of children with hearing
impairments, counselors in Special Schools, Hospitals, Churches and Counseling
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Organizations. Dependent variables include the questionnaire data on parents of children
with hearing impairments, whether or not they received counseling, and from where, as
well as whether they were able to cope with their children after counseling.
The items included and not included in this study are indicated in table 3.6.1.
TABLE 3.6.1
INCLUSIONS AND EXCLUSIONS
INCLUDED IN THIS STUDY
NOT INCLUDED IN THIS STUDY
Counseling theories
Counseling techniques
Counseling in general
Particular type of counseling received by
individual parents.
Parents of children with hearing impairments
Children with hearing impairments
3.7
PROCEDURE
Letters were written to heads of special schools asking for permission to conduct research
at their schools during open days. All heads of special schools granted permission. Letters
to heads of counseling agencies were also written and permission was granted to carry out
the study. Permission was also sought from pastors of sampled churches. Information was
given to all potential participants explaining the purpose of the study.
Those who
volunteered to participate in the study granted informed consent.
A structured questionnaire with multiple choice and open-ended questions was
administered to 300 families of children with hearing impairments. The participants of
this study came from the five major provinces of Zimbabwe. 60 from Harare, 60 from
Masvingo, 60 from Mutare, 60 from Gweru and 60 from Bulawayo. Participants were
randomly selected as mentioned above (section 3.5). I arranged with heads of special
schools to meet parents on open days. Given the time to meet the parents, I explained to
the parents the purpose of the study and how they were expected to complete the
questionnaires. Parents were given a chance to ask questions on things they did not
understand and clarifications were given. I collected the questionnaires as soon as they
were completed.
Informal interviews were conducted with individuals during the
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interval and the lunch break.
A different structured questionnaire for service
organizations was administered to personnel responsible for counseling at the following
general hospitals, Harare, Gweru, Mpilo, Masvingo and Mutare.
The same
questionnaire was administered to three registered counseling agencies, all in Harare.
Members from 15 churches, three from each of the towns, Harare, Gweru, Masvingo,
Bulawayo and Mutare also completed the questionnaire.
3.7.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
I chose to conduct the study through special schools in order to meet parents at well-known
places and at a convenient time as well as to minimize traveling expenses. Letters that
were written before gave parents an opportunity to decide whether to participate in the
study or not. A meeting with the parents before they completed the questionnaire gave me
an opportunity to explain the purpose of the study and also to stress the fact that
participation was voluntary. I chose to use questionnaires because it was easy to collect a
lot of data from a large sample within a reasonably short time. I could also conduct
interviews with parents who volunteered to participate.
3.7.2
CONSEQUENCES
It became easy for me to meet groups of parents in one place and gather data in one day at a
particular school in a particular town. It also saved time and money. It was an advantage
for me to be able to administer and collect the completed questionnaire on the same day.
Interviews took more time than I anticipated. See the map of Zimbabwe in chapter 1,
figure 1.14.1, for the location of towns in which the study was conducted.
3.8
INSTRUMENT
I used questionnaires and interviews to gather data. The idea was to gather data in a
simple and straightforward way.
The questionnaire format made it possible for
participants to freely express their opinions and ideas on their experiences in writing. I
considered that the anonymity of questionnaires would help elicit more satisfactory
information. This claim appears to be corroborated by the assertion of Babbie (1990:198)
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when he stated that questionnaires are preferable since they avoid the embarrassment of
direct questioning and so enhance the validity of the responses. Structured questionnaires
are a universally accepted mode of eliciting information for research purposes. It is
therefore probable that the theoretical and practical requirements of the investigation
being conducted would be met.
Before setting out to use the research instrument I was aware that the questionnaires would
have to be distributed either by hand or by mail. I familiarized myself with the writings of
Dawes (1972:152) and Cohen and Manion (1989:108) as to what should constitute a good
questionnaire. Writing on what should form the aggregate of an ideal questionnaire, Cohen
and Manion declared that it should be simple, clear and workable. This was the basis under
which I designed the instrument for this study. The design aimed at minimizing potential
errors from participants and coders. Since people’s participation in surveys is voluntary,
this questionnaire was made in such a way that it would help in engaging their interest,
encouraging their co-operation, and eliciting answers as close as possible to the truth.
As pointed out by Fowler (1988:74), questionnaires must be made attractive to the potential
respondent, appear simple and not be too time-consuming to complete. The instrument for
this study was designed with these criteria in mind. On the proper selection and/ordering of
questions, Fishbein (1967:93) maintained that presenting participants with carefully
selected ordered questions is the only practical way to elicit the data required to confirm or
disconfirm a hypothesis.
The above issues raised by the various authors were taken into consideration in the design
of the questionnaires.
I designed structured, straightforward questions to obtain the
information needed. It was intended that the questionnaires would be easy to understand
and complete. The patterns of the questionnaires took the following forms:
•
the fixed alternative format
•
the multiple choice format
•
the open-ended or self report format
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3.8.1
CHOICE AND RATIONALE
As stated before, I chose to use questionnaires because they are an easy way of collecting
data provided the questions are clear and simple. They allow participants to participate
freely. Multiple-choice questions are not time consuming on the part of participants.
Open-ended questions allow participants to express their views and even offer suggestions.
3.8.2
CONSEQUENCES
A fairly large amount of data was collected in a short time. I was able to administer the
questionnaires personally and collected them soon after completion, which gave me a 100%
return. Structured questionnaires do not give participants the freedom to express their
views on why they respond positively or negatively. In this sense the data collected may
lack depth.
3.9
DESCRIPTION OF THE MEASUREMENT TECHNIQUES
The details of the instrument used were as follows: Two questionnaires were constructed:
one for parents of children with hearing impairments and the other for service
organizations that offer counseling. A semi-structured interview questionnaire with 15
items was prepared and will be used to cross check parents questionnaire responses. It
covers all aspects of the parents’ questionnaire. The questionnaire for parents is divided
into three parts. Section A has questions on personal information, whether the child was
born deaf or not and who counseled the parents. Section B deals with questions that seek
to establish:
•
whether or not parents received counseling,
•
if parents were aware of counseling organizations,
•
if counseled parents were able to cope with their children.
Section C has open-ended questions that seek to establish:
•
the difficulties parents faced in raising their child,
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•
the organizations that counseled them,
•
whether counseling helped them or not,
•
their views on how counseling could benefit them.
The questionnaire for parents has six items in section A, 26 items in section B and six items
in section C that makes a total of 38 items altogether. The questionnaire for service
organizations has two sections. Section A has six items that seek to establish whether
organizations have counseled parents of children with hearing impairments and how many,
as well as the qualifications of counselors in these organizations. Section B has seven
items that seek to find out whether the counseling given to parents of children with hearing
impairments helps them cope with their children. The questionnaire has a total of 13 items.
The questionnaires used in this study can be found in appendixes D, H, K and L.
This description of the measurement techniques aims to give the reader a clear picture of
the structure of the instruments used in the study and what they purport to measure.
3.10
DEVELOPMENT OF THE INSTRUMENT
Despite a thorough survey of all relevant literature, no suitable instrument was found
which could be used in this particular study.
Some of the key references that were
consulted include, Colledge (2002), Nystul (1999), Babbie (1990), Howard (1996; 2000),
Satterly (1981), Shepherd (1984), Oppenheim (1966) and Likert (1967). So instruments
were made specifically for this study with the help of Babbie (1990:140, 149)’s examples.
Some of the items were developed with the use of ideas from Oppenheim (1966:196).
Focusing on the statement of the problem, the instrument for the study was developed from
an original pool of 62 items. Section B had 50 items and section C had 12 items. These
items were given to staff and students in the Special Education and Counseling Department
at the University of Zimbabwe, who were already qualified teachers. The main focus was
on:
•
clarity of language
•
relevance of each question to the information required
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•
equal numbers of positive and negative items
•
no repetition
•
items covering counseling from positive to negative extremes.
In order to have a balanced pool, items in section B were grouped into three different
categories as mentioned before:
•
did the parents receive any counseling
•
who counseled them
•
what were their perceptions of the counseling they received.
With the help of experts in counseling at the Special Education Department at the
University of Zimbabwe, the wording of certain questions was altered. Changes that were
made by students and staff from the Special Education department reduced the items to 40.
Section B had 30 items and section C had 10 items. However, before the questions were
rewritten, a number of alterations regarding the order, wording, and what the instrument
purported to measure were done with the help of professionals in the Special Education
and Psychology departments. During this process the number of items dropped to 36.
Section B now had 28 items and section C had eight items.
Satterly (1981:97) and
Shepherd (1984:124)’s response sets were considered. Out of the response sets outlined by
Shepherd (1984:124), two of them had relevance to this study. These were the positional
set and the category set. With the positional set the respondent repeatedly chooses right
hand and left hand responses. This was controlled by randomizing scoring direction. As
for category set, the respondent repeatedly chooses one type of response. Balancing
positive and negative item responses controls this.
The final process, which was the pilot project, was aimed at the structure of the whole
instrument, its relevance to the research questions, repetition of items, terms used in the
wording and clarity of items. The pilot project was undertaken with 20 students who were
studying for a Bachelor of Education Degree in Counseling, 20 students who were studying
for a Bachelor of Education Degree in Special Education (Hearing Impairment) and 40
parents of children with hearing impairments who were not included in the main study,
some lived in villages and others in small towns.
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I carried out an item analysis to select the best statements for the instrument. As pointed
out by Likert (1932:86) ideally the item analysis should take place by correlating each item
with some reliable outside criterion of the aspects to be measured, retaining only the items
with the highest correlations. However, Likert (1932:90) further asserts that such criteria
are almost never available. In my case, the only available measurement was the total pool
of items that I had carefully constructed.
Purifying the items, so that they became
consistent and homogeneous, would enable them to measure the same thing and achieve
validity. I simply worked out correlation coefficients for each item with the total score
minus the score of the item in question and retained those with the highest correlations.
What it means is that for each item in turn, we will have a slightly different set of total
scores. Dawes (1972:112) asserts that the subtraction procedure does not often make much
difference and therefore many research workers do not bother with it. This serves as an
internal-consistency method of item analysis, since no external criterion is available. An
example is given where, say, out of 26 items, item 5 is considered for analysis. I have
scores of 10 participants on the pool of all items, on item 5, and on the pool of all items
minus their score on item 5. See table 3.10.1 adapted from Oppenheim (1996:199).
TABLE 3.10.1
ITEM ANALYSIS
Respondent Total score
A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
J
45
42
35
35
20
39
33
40
22
27
Score on item 5
5
5
4
4
1
4
3
4
1
2
Total score minus item 5
40
37
31
31
19
35
30
36
21
25
The relationship between item 5 and the total score minus the scores for item 5 was
calculated and the relationship was very strong (r = .96). It must be pointed out that in this
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study not all items obtained such a high relationship. However, the best 26 were selected
on the final instrument. All items carry the same weight.
This further reduced the number of items to the 38 that made up the final questionnaire.
After making sure that the questions in section B had an equal balance of positive and
negative items, they were scattered and numbered 1-26 for the whole questionnaire.
Section A had six items, section B had 26 items and section C had six items.
The questionnaire to Service Organizations (Hospitals, Churches, Special Schools for
children with hearing impairments, and Counseling Organizations) was developed along
the same lines, following the same stages. The final questionnaire had 16 items. Section A
that deals with personal information had six items, section B that focused on parents of
children with hearing impairments had six items and section C that dealt with counselors’
perceptions of parents of children with hearing impairments had four open-ended
questions.
3.10.1 CHOICE AND RATIONALE
It was important that I developed suitable questionnaires to use in this study. I chose to
develop these instruments so that I could use them to collect comprehensive and reliable
data for this study. The process of starting with a large pool of items, eliminating them to a
smaller number through the use of university lecturers and students in different relevant
departments until the final questionnaires were obtained, gives credit to the instruments.
Carefully constructed questionnaires have good internal consistency and high-test re-test
reliability. These instruments were tested through the pilot study and found to be reliable.
3.10.2 CONSEQUENCES
I was able to collect the required data using the instruments referred to above. Most of the
participants in the study responded to almost all the multiple-choice questions. This may
have been the case because the questionnaire did not require a lot of thinking and was not
time consuming. Structured questionnaires are easy to analyze. About one quarter of the
participants in the study did not answer open-ended questions. These needed thinking and
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writing, and took time to complete. As a whole, comprehensive and reliable data were
collected using these instruments.
3.11
SCORING OF THE SCALE
As emphasized by Dawes (1972:16), scoring must be consistent. Thus if it is decided
that on a positive statement a high score of 5 is for Strongly Agree, then a score of 1
should be for Strongly Disagree. Negative statements must be scored with a 1 for
Strongly Agree and a 5 for Strongly Disagree. It is important to take note of such
reversals. On the Likert–type scale constructed for this particular study, responses were
graded for each statement, and were expressed in terms of the following five categories,
SA; A; U; D and SD. (SA) for Strongly Agree, (A) for Agree, (U) for Undecided, (D)
for Disagree and (SD) for Strongly Disagree. The statements were either positive or
negative. To score the scale, the responses were credited 5; 4; 3; 2 and 1 from the
positive to the negative end or vice-versa.
A
“Strongly Agree” with a positive
statement would receive a score of 5 as would “Strongly Disagree” with a negative
statement. The sum of the item credits represented the individual’s total score. Scoring
keys were made in order to ease the scoring procedure.
3.11.1 CHOICE AND RATIONALE
I chose to score in the above manner in order to try to minimize guesswork. The scoring
made it easy to record the data entries for analysis. The use of the positive and negative
statements as well as reversals on scoring these statements, helped to indicate unreliable
responses.
3.11.2 CONSEQUENCES
The use of the 5-point Likert scale gave the participants a wide choice of options to their
responses. Most of the participants’ responses matched the positive and negative questions
appropriately. The scoring system helped to indicate inappropriate responses. The chief
advantage of the Likert scale is that it is based on the respondent’s perspectives rather than
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on the researcher’s construction.
Coding and categorizing such data is easy and
manageable.
3.12
VALIDITY AND RELIABILITY OF INSTRUMENT
I used my practical experiences of working with parents of and with children with hearing
impairments for thirteen years as a teacher and counselor. I also reviewed literature from
well-known researchers in the field of counseling: Rogers (1942; 1952; 1959), Howe
(1989; 1993; 1996), Davis (1993), McLeod (1994; 1996; 1998; 2000), McCleod (1998),
Howard (1996; 2000), Colledge (2002) and many others cited in the study.
Oppenheim (1996:23) maintained that reliability of Likert scales tends to be high, partly
because of the greater range of answers permitted to participants. He goes on to say that a
reliability coefficient of .85 is often achieved. By using the internal-consistency method of
item selection, the scale approaches uni-dimensionality in many cases.
As mentioned above the instrument that was to be used on parents was administered to 20
students studying for a Bachelor’s Degree in Counseling, 20 students who were studying
for a Bachelor’s Degree in Special Education (Hearing Impairment) and 20 parents of
children with hearing impairments from small towns and villages, who did not take part in
the main study. It was interesting to note that 38 of the students and 19 parents who
marked a positive item also marked its direct negative one. Only four cases marked
undecided on item 26 on the questionnaire.
The instrument that was to be used on Service Organizations was administered to 20
students studying counseling and also to their lecturers in the Education and Psychology
Departments. All 20 students and eight lecturers who marked a positive item also marked
its direct negative one.
This gave the instruments some credibility in reliability and
validity. Adams (1966:47) pointed out that the problem with attitude and perception scales
is that they deal with verbalized attitude or perceptions rather than actions. The use of
such an instrument does not guarantee future validity. The participants may not complete
the questionnaires accurately. Attitudes and perceptions are not easy to measure since the
responses depend entirely on the individual’s complete honesty and the avoidance of the
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tendency to give socially acceptable answers (Cohen & Holliday, 1982:253). As a whole
however, the instrument was theoretically sound and its content satisfactory. Experienced
staff and students in the Special Education Department, lecturing and studying counseling
respectively, checked the content. Above all, an instrument devised for a specific purpose
is more suitable than any of the published instruments (Satterly, 1981:87). As evidenced in
the review of literature, the instrument to be used in this study will represent a first step in
exploring and researching in the field of counseling parents of children with disabilities in
Zimbabwe.
In this study I will use some of the guidelines on “Criteria for Evaluating the Validity of
Quantitative and Qualitative Research” from Stiles (1993). These are as follows:
•
To ensure that the description of research procedure is clear and comprehensive.
This includes sample selection and how the data were collected and analyzed.
•
To conceptualize the study in its historical, social and cultural location.
•
To systematically consider the alternative explanations or interpretations of data,
so that the findings do not appear to be mere confirmation of one’s initial or preexisting biases.
•
To give a detailed description of the study in such a way that another researcher
would be able to replicate it.
The results of the study should have general
applicability and relevance to other studies.
3.12.1 RATIONALE AND CONSEQUENCES
The results of the pilot study indicated consistency in the responses of the participants,
which gives credibility to the instruments. The use of the positive and negative items
together with the scoring system strengthened the reliability of the instruments. Most
participants who marked a negative item also marked its direct positive counterpart. When
the instrument that was used on parents was tested for response consistency, only four
items out of 26 were not consistent. This is an indication that the instrument is valid and
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reliable. The open-ended questionnaire to parents allowed them to express their feelings in
terms of what they went through as they raised their children with hearing impairments.
3.13
METHODS OF DATA ANALYSIS
I will present analysis of quantitative data first, followed by qualitative data.
3.13.1 QUANTITATIVE DATA
The quantitative data for this study were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Descriptive
statistics provides a method of reducing large data matrices to manageable summaries to
permit easy understanding and interpretation. In this study descriptive statistics and the
associations among variables summarize single variables. Using descriptive statistics I
start with a set of data that is categorized, sorted, recorded and then interpreted. I then
attempt to convey the essential characteristics of the data by arranging the data into a
more interpretable form, forming frequency distributions and generating graphical
displays as well as calculating numerical indexes such as frequencies and percentages.
Variables are summarized in a data set, one at a time, and are also examined in how they
interrelated (examining correlations). The key factor in descriptive statistics is how to
communicate the essential characteristics of the data. One of the most basic ways to
describe the data values of a variable is to construct a frequency distribution. A frequency
distribution is a systematic arrangement of data values in which the data are rank ordered
and the frequency of each unique data value is shown. In this study descriptive statistics is
used to establish parents’ perceptions of the counseling they received, whether or not they
were able to cope with their children after counseling, who counseled them and also the
qualifications of the people who counseled them.
3.13.2 RATIONALE AND CONSEQUENCES
I chose to use descriptive statistics due to the nature of the data collected for the study.
This method allows for the description of the nature and characteristics of the data collected
and how it will be used.
Single variables and associations among variables can be
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summarized using descriptive statistics.
The maximum amount of information is
maintained in the simplest summary form.
3.13.3 QUALITATIVE DATA
Qualitative analysis is used to analyze parents and counselors’ responses to open-ended
questions where they give their views and suggestions.
This data will be used to
complement the quantitative data and to gain a deeper understanding of the responses of the
participants in the study.
3.13.4 RATIONALE AND CONSEQUENCES
I chose to use qualitative analysis on participants’ responses to open-ended questions so
that the information is brought out in its richest form. The message is contained in the
feelings and emotions expressed by the participants as portrayed in their actual statements.
Analysis of qualitative data is often complex and time consuming. The process involves
categorization, sorting, recording and interpretation.
Qualitative data provides an
interpretation of people feelings and emotions.
3.13.5 ETHICAL STRATEGIES IN RESEARCH
As stated in chapter 1, informed consent was sought and it was explained to the parents
and counseling organizations that participation in the study was voluntary and anyone
could withdraw at any time. According to Capuzzi and Gross (1997:94) ethics is the
philosophical study of moral value of human conduct and of the rules and principles that
ought to govern it, or a code of behavior considered correct especially that of a particular
group, profession or individual. It also involves the moral fitness of a decision and course
of action taken.
McCleod (2000:327) points out the paradox between research and
counseling and psychotherapy where the therapy is normally conducted in private between
client and counselor.
On the other hand research implies making results public.
According to Heppner (1992:78) “ethics are expressions of our values and a guide to
achieving them”. This closely follows the work of Hill, Thompson and Williams (1993:115)
on ethics in research where they point out that ethics are central to research. Since
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counseling is about privacy between the client and the counselor, whereas research is a
public affair, ethics become the guiding principle that ensures the protection of the client as
a participant in the research process (Woolfe & Dryden, 1998:57). He suggests that it is in
the interest of ethics for the researcher to discuss his/her study limitations, the problems
experienced during data collection and how these problems impacted on the quality of
conclusions drawn from the results.
In this study parents and counseling organizations were notified verbally and in writing of
the purpose of the study and of how the information they contributed was going to be used.
They were also assured that they would be informed of the results of the study. Anonymity
and confidentiality of individual contributions were upheld. Schools, churches, counseling
organizations and hospitals were also informed of confidentiality and anonymity.
Trust is an important cornerstone in the counseling relationship, and central to the
development and the maintenance of trust is the principle of confidentiality. The obligation
of counselors to maintain confidentiality in their relationships with their clients is not
absolute McCLeod (2000:3). However, counselors need to be aware of both the ethical
and legal guidelines that apply.
In distinguishing between “confidentiality” and
“privileged communication,” (Miles & Huberman, 1994:10), in a research context, it is
important to keep in mind that confidentiality is an ethical concept, whereas privileged
communication is a legal concept (Tesch, 1990:85). Confidentiality is defined as an ethical
responsibility and a professional duty, which demands that information learned in private
interaction with a client not be revealed to others. Professional ethical standards mandate
this behavior except when the counselor’s commitment to uphold client confidences must be
set aside due to special or compelling circumstances or legal mandate (Arthur & Swanson,
1993:3). For example when a client is a danger to self or others. The law places physical
safety above considerations of confidentiality or the right of privacy. Protection of the
person takes precedence and includes the duty to warn. In this research anonymity is
maintained within these boundaries.
In chapter 4, I will present and provide an analysis of the results of this study.
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4
4.1
PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING
IMPAIRMENTS ACCESSING COUNSELLING
SERVICES: RESEARCH RESULTS
INTRODUCTION
In this chapter I will present the research results from the questionnaire to parents and the
interviews that were conducted. I will do this by first presenting the results by means of
tables and graphical representations (e.g. bar charts and pie charts) and then by discussing
each one of these findings. Results from the questionnaire to counseling organizations will
also be presented. I will also present results from parents’ views on how they thought
counseling could be made more accessible. This chapter will only serve the purpose of
presenting the results. In the next chapter I will discuss the research results from this study
with the broader available literature and also by integrating it with the theoretical
framework that has been discussed in chapter 2 of this thesis.
4.2
PRESENTATION
AND
INTERPRETATION
OF
RESULTS
–
AN
OVERVIEW
Three hundred (300) parents of children with hearing impairments from the five main cities
of the country, namely Harare, Bulawayo, Gweru, Masvingo and Mutare, completed three
hundred questionnaires. Interviews were also conducted with the same parents to cross
check the questionnaire responses. Two hundred and eighty two (282) parents responded
to the open-ended questionnaire.
In addition to 300 parents, a total number of 28
organizations took part in this study. Five special schools, five hospitals, three counseling
organizations and 15 churches completed 28 questionnaires prepared for counseling service
organizations. All 28 organizations responded to the open-ended questionnaire.
There was a 100% response rate mainly because the questionnaires were self administered
and collected on the same day. It is possible that parents expected the study to bring quick
solutions to their problems and so everybody wanted their contributions to be put forward.
It could also have been due to the fact that it was emphasized to parents that if they wanted
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to leave early, they could either put the questionnaires in the box from which they took
them or hand them to me directly.
Most parents spent the day with their families
supporting their child with a hearing impairment and only left at the required time, half past
four in the afternoon. The questionnaire response rate was exceptional although not all the
questions were fully completed.
Throughout this study, graphical representations and tables are identified by the relevant
chapter number, which is used as a prefix, followed by the sequence number in which they
appear in the chapter.
4.3
QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS ON THE QUESTIONNAIRE TO PARENTS
The word “parents” refers to representatives of the families that took part in the study, in
the form of a wife or husband/or both. If both parents took part in the study, they
completed one questionnaire and were considered as one parent (a couple). Participants in
this study refer to parents and therefore the terms parents and participants or parentparticipants will be used alternatively to avoid monotony. Although frequencies of results
are shown in both raw scores and percentages, I will use percentages to report the results in
the graphic representations. Before I present the results, I will provide biographical details
of children with hearing impairments and of their parents.
4.3.1
BIOGRAPHICAL DETAILS OF PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
AND OF THEIR CHILDREN
Items ‘i’ to ‘v’ on the questionnaire are represented by tables 4.3.1.1 to 4.3.1.5 that contain
biographical details of parents of children with hearing impairments and that of their
children.
FIGURE 4.3.1.1
(ITEM I) GENDERS OF PARTICIPANTS IN THE STUDY
Frequency
Valid
Men
119
Percent
39.7
Valid Percent
39.7
Cumulative
Percent
39.7
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Frequency
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Valid Percent
Women
152
50.7
50.7
90.3
Couples
29
9.7
9.7
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Total
10%
40%
Man
Woman
couples
50%
Of the 300 parents who responded to item (i), 40% were men, 50% were women and 10%
were couples. It is interesting to note that there is such a high number of men in this
sample, because usually mothers are much more involved with a child with disability.
However, it can also be explained that the parents’ main reason for coming was not the
study but to spend a day with the family, interacting and sharing ideas with other parents,
which has always been the tradition. It is also at such meetings that parents discuss the
future of their children with the school authorities and have to make a commitment by
signing documents for secondary or vocational education, especially for those children
completing primary education. This could have necessitated the attendance of a large
number of fathers. Studies by Bristol and Gallagher (1986:92) and Kazak and Marvin
(1984:69), point out that fathers of children with disabilities play a peripheral parental role
when compared to mothers. Seligman and Darling (1989:153) assert that through their
attitude towards their wives and families, fathers affect the way in which mothers interact
with a child with hearing impairments. Moores (1996:31) points out that traditionally,
fathers have not played a large role in continuous relationships with professionals such as
counselors, specialist teachers, speech therapists and psychologists. In most cases fathers
would not take the responsibility of attending counseling, parental or consultation meetings
(Moores & Meadow-Orlans, 1990:306). However, in their study, Cartwright, Cartwright
and Ward (1995:398) noted that fathers have also only recently become a source of study in
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the families of children with disabilities. In this study, the high percentage of participants
who were fathers, will contribute to this emerging body of knowledge.
FIGURE 4.3.1.2:
(ITEM II) GENDER OF CHILDREN OF PARTICIPANTS IN THE STUDY
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Boy
180
60.0
60.0
60.0
Girl
119
39.7
39.7
99.7
Both
1
.3
.3
100.0
Total
300
100.0
100.0
0%
40%
Boy
Girl
60%
Both genders
Out of 300 participants, 60% of the parents’ children were boys, 40% of the parents’
children were girls and .3% of the parents had a girl and a boy with a hearing impairment.
However, in the graph percentages are rounded off to the nearest ten and so .3% is
indicated as zero percent. According to Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1995:271);
Meadow (1996:86) and Moores and Meadow (1990:347), deafness is more prevalent in
boys than in girls although the difference is not significant. A study by Vernon and
Andrews (1990:158) indicates that after screening a pool of children, out of 566 children
who were confirmed to be having hearing impairments, (286) 51% were boys and (280)
49% were girls.
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FIGURE 4.3.1.3
(ITEM III) MY CHILD WAS BORN DEAF
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Valid Percent
Yes
165
55.0
55.0
55.0
No
123
41.0
41.0
96.0
12
4.0
4.0
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Not sure
Total
4%
yes
41%
55%
no
not sure
Out of 300 parents who responded to item (iii), 55% of the parents’ indicated that their
children were born deaf, 41% of the parents indicated that their children became deaf later,
and 4% of the parents did not know whether their children were born deaf or whether they
acquired deafness later. A study carried out by Moores and Meadow (1990:123), indicates
that out of data presented on 200 children with hearing impairments, 55% were born deaf,
43% acquired deafness later in life through diseases and accidents and 2% were not known.
The two acknowledged that it was sometimes impossible to ascertain when and how a child
became deaf. In another study by Moores (1996:85), where he carried out an analysis on
619 children with hearing impairments, he established that (290) 47% were born deaf,
(252) 41% acquired deafness through other means and (77) 12% were deaf through
unknown causes. It seems therefore that there is a high correlation between the etiological
factors for the children of the participants in this study, and that of other studies that relate
to children with hearing impairments.
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FIGURE 4.3.1.4
(ITEM IV) MY CHILD BECAME DEAF LATER
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Valid Percent
Yes
129
43.0
43.0
43.0
No
159
53.0
53.0
53.0
12
4.0
4.0
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Not sure
Total
4%
43%
yes
no
53%
not sure
Out of 300 parents who responded to item (iv), 53% indicated that their children did not
become deaf later, while 43% of the parents indicated that their children became deaf later
and 4% of the parents indicated that they did not know whether their children were born
deaf or they acquired deafness later. It is interesting to note the inconsistency in responses
to question (iii) and question (iv) When the statement was given as “My child was born
deaf” 55% indicated “yes” and when it was stated “My child became deaf later” 53%
indicated “no” instead of 55%. The same with children who are said to have become deaf
later, in (ii) they are indicated as 41% and here they are indicated as 43%. This may mean
that some parents were not quite sure as to whether their children were born deaf or
acquired deafness later, as pointed out earlier on by Moores and Meadow (1990:123). It is
interesting to note that parents can remain hesitant as attributing the causes of hearing
impairment in their child.
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FIGURE 4.3.1.5
(ITEM V) HOW OLD IS YOUR CHILD?
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Valid Percent
5-8yrs
72
24.0
24.0
24.0
9-13yrs
148
49.3
49.3
73.3
14-18yrs
77
25.7
25.7
99.0
3
1.0
1.0
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
2 and 3
Total
2 and 3 1
25.7
14-18yrs
Series1
49.3
9-13yrs
24
5-8yrs
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
(2 & 3) refers to parents with more than one child with hearing impairments in the
age groups 14-18 years and also 9-13 years respectively.
Out of 300 parents who responded to item (v), 24% had children between the ages of five
and eight, 49% had their children between the ages of nine and 13, 26% had children
between the ages of 14 and 18 and 1% of the parents had children between nine and 13 and
also between 14 and 18. In developing countries screening methods are very poor due to
inadequate equipment and lack of qualified personnel (Nolan & Tucker, 1981:49 and
Moores & Meadow, 1990:114). Most children with hearing impairments are identified at a
late stage and therefore are enrolled late as well at the ages of nine or 10. This is further
confirmed by the findings of Chimedza (1986) when he carried out a study in Zimbabwe in
special schools for children with hearing impairments. Some children are hidden due to
superstitious beliefs while others are hidden due to feelings of inadequacy and/or ignorance
(Baine, 1988:16 and UNESCO 1981:48). Such children are sometimes discovered at a late
age and put in a special school in standard one at the age of 10 years. This may explain
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why 49% of the parents have children between nine and 13 years and 25% have children
between the ages of 14 and 18 years. From my own experiences as a teacher of children
with hearing impairments for 23 years, it is very likely that parents of some of these
children come from rural areas where they have limited resources in terms of transport and
even lack of knowledge of special schools and the procedure of enrolling a child in a
special school. They may also take time to acquire the required boarding or and tuition fees
for the child. By the time the necessary funds are secured, the child will have lost a
considerable amount of schooling time.
4.3.2
QUANTITATIVE RESULTS ON COUNSELING
FIGURE 4.3.2.1
(ITEM VI) DID YOU RECEIVE ANY COUNSELING AT ALL?
Percent
Valid Percent
Cumulative
Percent
270
90.0
90.0
90.0
30
10.0
10.0
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Frequency
Valid Yes
No
Total
10%
Yes
No
90%
Out of 300 parents who responded to item (vi), 90% said they received counseling and 10%
said they did not receive counseling. Nystul (1999) and Kirk, Gallagher and Anastasiow
(1997) point out that most parents of children with hearing impairments go through
counseling in one way or another. According to Moores (1996) most parents receive
counseling from professional counselors, individuals, members of the extended family,
specialist teachers, and psychologists or from churches. On the definition of counseling
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Howard (1992:37), points out that counseling has always existed and will continue to exist
and therefore almost everyone has a chance to receive counseling. Hallahan and Kauffman
(1994:498) assert that some parents confuse counseling with advice. They further point out
that sometimes parents are given both and may find it difficult to distinguish the one from
the other. For the purposes of this study, I assume that the use of the term “counseling” in
the formulation of the question may also include advice giving for the participants in the
study.
FIGURE 4.3.2.2
PARTICIPANTS’ SOURCES OF COUNSELING
Sources of Counseling
Count
Column%
Special Schools
188
63.1
Counseling Organization
119
39.9
Churches
136
45.3
Hospitals
142
47.3
Relatives
91
30.3
157
52.0
4
1.3
30
10.0
Individuals
Friends
None
110
430
52
157
63
188
Special Schools
Counseling Organizations
Churches
Hospitals
3091
119
40
Relatives
Individuals
Friends
142
47
136
45
None
All 300 parents responded to sources of counseling indicating where they were counseled.
The results indicate that (188) 63% of the parents got counseling from special schools,
(119) 40% from registered counseling organizations, (136) 45% from churches, (142) 47%
— 96 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
from hospitals, (91) 30% from relatives, (157) 52% from individuals, (4) 1% from friends
and (30) 10% did not get any counseling at all. Moores and Meadow (1990:137) pose it
that the child with hearing impairments presents the family with specific problems that may
result in shock, shame, guilt, anger, sadness, denial and finally failure to adjust
(Featherstone, 1980:498). Many move through a grieving process as though the child had
died (Turnbull & Turnbull, 1990:24). With all these terrifying feelings going through the
parents’ minds, counseling is needed to help parents work through their emotions and come
to terms with their problems. Many parents approach various professionals for counseling,
advice and treatment of the child. According to Hallahan (1992:522) parents of children
with hearing impairments visit doctors, counseling clinics, school counselors in special
schools as well as registered counseling organizations. Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:489)
further point out that some parents turn to other parents who have children with hearing
impairments and share experiences. As noted by Featherstone (1980:496) many parents
have found parents’ support groups to be effective in both sharing experiences and offering
emotional support. While families obtain a lot of support from friends, relatives and
members of the extended family, they prefer to get counseling from professional counselors
in counseling organizations and special schools as well as from churches (Vernon &
Andrews, 1990:141). In their research in which they interviewed 120 parents, Hardman,
Drew, Egan and Wolf (1993:295), indicate that most parents do not bother much about the
source of counseling as long as they get help for their children. Considering all the above
factors, it is clear that parents do not have hard and fast rules as to who to approach for
counseling as long as they obtain professional help for their children.
4.3.3
NEGATIVELY PHRASED ITEMS
Table 4.3.2.1(a) indicates results of participants to the negatively phrased items. I present
these results by indicating the cumulative sum for all the responses on each of the scale
points. I also present it as percentage of the total number of responses for a given question.
— 97 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
TABLE 4.3.3.1(a) NEGATIVELY PHRASED ITEMS
Questions
Strongly
Agree
Count
1. Parents of
children with
hearing
impairments do
not need.
8
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly
Disagree
Total
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
2.7
8
2.7
2
.7
112
37.3
170
56.7
300
100.0
2.Counseling is
totally different
from advice.
34
11.4
93
31.2
15
5.0
106
35.6
50
16.8
298
99.3
4. Counseling did
not help us to
understand the
needs of our child.
14
4.8
21
7.2
17
5.8
154
52.9
85
29.2
291
97.0
5. Counseling does
not help parents to
accept the idea of
having a hearing
impaired child in
the family.
13
4.4
35
11.9
15
5.1
141
48.0
90
30.6
294
98.0
6. Children who
are hearing
impaired should be
looked after by the
Social Welfare.
15
5.1
53
18.1
12
4.1
163
55.6
50
17.1
293
97.6
8. We do not allow
our child to play
with other children
in our community
because they may
not treat him well.
19
6.4
37
12.5
10
3.4
121
40.9
109
36.8
296
98.6
9. My child does
not relate well and
interact effectively
with other
members of the
family.
19
6.3
88
29.3
14
4.7
124
41.3
55
18.3
300
100.0
10. Most people,
who counseled us,
told us what to do.
34
11.8
147
50.9
18
6.2
69
23.9
21
7.3
289
96.3
6
2.0
59
20.1
17
5.8
152
51.9
59
20.1
293
97.6
12. The counseling
we received did
not help us to cope
with the child at
all.
— 98 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Questions
Strongly
Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly
Disagree
Total
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
15. It is almost
impossible to plan
the future of a
child who is
hearing impaired.
82
27.8
141
47.8
20
6.8
40
13.6
12
4.1
295
983
16. People who
counseled us did
not give us
guidance at all.
28
10.0
47
16.8
63
22.5
104
37.1
38
13.6
280
93.3
21. Parents can
equally do well for
their child without
guidance and
counseling.
19
6.5
81
27.8
43
14.8
105
36.1
43
14.8
291
97.0
TABLE 4.3.3.1(b)
Questions
7. Counseling
helped me to plan
the future of my
child.
11. Counseling is a
must for parents of
children with
hearing
impairments.
POSITIVELY PHRASED ITEMS
Strongly
Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly
Disagree
Total
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
25
8.4
62
20.9
18
6.1
131
44.1
61
20.5
297
99.0
2.7
14
4.7
16
5.3
144
48.0
116
38.7
300
100.0
8
13. I am aware of
organizations that
offer I in
Zimbabwe.
42
14.2
78
26.4
16
5.4
100
33.9
59
20.0
295
98.3
14. My child fits
well and interacts
effectively with
family members.
14
4.7
60
20.0
10
3.3
158
52.7
58
19.3
300
100.0
19
6.4
41
13.9
11
3.7
137
46.3
88
29.7
296
98.6
17. Without
counseling one
cannot fully accept
having a child with
hearing
impairment in the
family.
— 99 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Questions
Strongly
Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly
Disagree
Total
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
Count
%
18. With or
without help from
other
organizations, it is
parents’
responsibility to
fully cater for their
children who are
hearing impaired.
15
5.1
48
16.3
7
2.4
146
49.5
79
26.8
295
98.3
19. We allow our
child to make
friends and play
with other children
in our
neighborhood.
8
1.7
19
6.4
11
3.7
193
65.2
65
22.0
296
98.6
20. The problem
with counseling is
that one is not
provided with
answers.
28
9.9
108
38.2
52
18.4
81
28.6
14
4.9
283
94.3
22. Counseling
really helped us to
understand the
child.
8
2.7
16
5.4
16
5.4
156
52.9
99
33.6
295
98.3
23. Counselors
also referred me to
other professionals
for further help.
36
12.4
74
25.5
22
7.6
110
37.9
48
16.6
290
96.6
24.Counseling
helped us to cope
with our child who
is hearing
impaired.
3
1.0
27
9.1
16
5.4
166
56.1
84
28.4
296
98.6
25. Guidance and
counseling are
important for both
parents and the
child.
26
8.8
71
24.1
12
4.1
114
38.6
72
24.4
295
98.3
26. It is difficult to
separate
counseling from
advice.
39
13.3
97
33.1
33
11.3
97
33.1
27
9.2
293
97.6
Table 4.3.3.1(b) above indicates results of participants to the positively phrased items.
Again I present these results by indicating the cumulative sum for all these responses on
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
each of the scale points. I also present it as a percentage of the total number of responses
for a given question.
Tables 4.3.8.1 to 4.3.8.26 are a further analysis of parents’ responses to the whole
questionnaire, item by item.
All 300 parents responded to items 1, 3, 9 and 14. Two hundred and ninety eight (298)
responded to items 2 and 11. Two hundred and ninety seven (297) responded to item 7.
Two hundred and ninety six (296) responded to items 8, 17, 19 and 24 and 295 responded
to items 13, 15, 18, 22 and 25. Two hundred and ninety four (294) responded to item 5
while 293 responded to items 6, 12 and 26. Two hundred and ninety one (291) parents
responded to items 4 and 21. Two hundred and ninety (290) responded to item 23. Two
hundred and eighty nine (289) responded to item 10. Two hundred and eighty three (283)
parents responded to item 20 and 280 responded to item 16. Results are indicated in the
respective tables and summaries of results.
In the next section I will present the results to each of the items graphically, to give a visual
representation of the results per item. I will use both graphs and tables for this purpose,
mainly to give a vivid clear picture of the results. In the short synopsis that follows each
graph and table, I will combine the results on each side of the response scale in order to
form three categories for responses: Agree, Disagree and Undecided.
The graphic
representation will therefore give a slightly more nuanced version of the results, whereas
the syntactical description will delineate the results by simplifying the continuum of these
responses.
FIGURE 4.3.8.1
(ITEM 1) PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS DO NOT
NEED COUNSELING
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
8
2.7
2.7
2.7
Agree
8
2.7
2.7
5.3
Undecided
2
.7
.7
6.0
112
37.3
37.3
43.3
Disagree
— 101 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Frequency
Percent
Valid
Percent
Strongly Disagree
170
56.7
56.7
Total
300
100.0
100.0
Cumulative
Percent
100.0
3%
3%
3%
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
37%
56%
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
Of 300 parents who responded to item 1, 6% agreed with the statement, 93% disagreed and
1% was undecided.
Table 4.3.8.2
(Item 2) Counseling is totally different from advice
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Disagree
34
11.3
11.4
11.4
Disagree
93
31.0
31.2
42.6
Undecided
15
5.0
5.0
47.7
106
35.3
35.6
83.2
50
16.7
16.8
100.0
298
99.3
100.0
2
.7
300
100.0
Agree
Strongly Agree
Total
Missing System
Total
— 102 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
17%
11%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
Undecided
31%
Agree
36%
Strongly Agree
5%
Of the 298 parents who responded to item 2, 53% agreed with the statement, 42% disagreed
and 5% were undecided.
FIGURE 4.3.8.3
(ITEM 3) I
AM NOT AWARE OF ANY ORGANIZATION THAT OFFERS
COUNSELING IN ZIMBABWE
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
32
10.7
10.7
10.7
Agree
99
33.0
33.0
43.7
Undecided
12
4.0
4.0
47.7
Disagree
93
31.0
31.0
78.7
Strongly Disagree
64
21.3
21.3
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Total
21%
11%
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
33%
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
31%
4%
Of the 300 parents who responded to item 3, 44% agreed with the statement, 52% disagreed
and 4% were undecided. It is interesting to note that the groups of parents who are aware
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
and those who are not aware of counseling organizations are almost equal. The indication
is that there are almost as many people in this group of participants who are not aware of
counseling organizations as those who are aware, with the latter being a slightly larger
group.
FIGURE 4.3.8.4
(ITEM 4) COUNSELING
DID NOT HELP US TO UNDERSTAND THE NEEDS
OF OUR CHILD
Frequency
Valid
Valid Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
14
4.7
4.8
4.8
Agree
21
7.0
7.2
12.0
Undecided
17
5.7
5.8
17.9
154
51.3
52.9
70.8
85
28.3
29.2
100.0
291
97.0
100.0
9
3.0
300
100.0
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
Total
Missing
Percent
System
Total
5% 7%
29%
6%
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
53%
Of the 291 parents that responded to item 4, 12% agreed with the statement, 82% disagreed
and 6% were undecided. It appears that most parents were of the opinion that they
benefited from counseling in understanding the needs of their child.
— 104 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
FIGURE 4.3.8.5
(ITEM 5) COUNSELING DOES NOT HELP PARENTS TO ACCEPT THE IDEA
OF HAVING A HEARING IMPAIRED CHILD IN THE FAMILY
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
13
4.3
4.4
4.4
Agree
35
11.7
11.9
16.3
Undecided
15
5.0
5.1
21.4
141
47.0
48.0
69.4
90
30.0
30.6
100.0
294
98.0
100.0
6
2.0
300
100.0
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
Total
Missing System
Total
4%
12%
Strongly Agree
31%
5%
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
48%
Of the 294 parents who responded to item 5, 16% agreed with the statement, 79% disagreed
and 5% were undecided. It would appear that parents believe counseling helps them to
accept and integrate the child with hearing impairments into the family. Studies carried out
by Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1990:398) and Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:496),
indicate that counseling did not only help parents of children with hearing impairment to
accept their children, but further increased their bonding and family integration.
FIGURE 4.3.8.6
(ITEM 6) CHILDREN WHO ARE HEARING IMPAIRED SHOULD BE LOOKED
AFTER BY THE SOCIAL WELFARE
Frequency
Valid
Strongly Agree
15
Percent
Valid
Percent
5.0
5.1
Cumulative
Percent
5.1
— 105 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Frequency
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Agree
53
17.7
18.1
23.2
Undecided
12
4.0
4.1
27.3
163
54.3
55.6
82.9
50
16.7
17.1
100.0
293
97.7
100.0
7
2.3
300
100.0
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
Total
Missing System
Total
5%
17%
Strongly Agree
18%
Agree
Undecided
4%
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
56%
Of the 293 parents who responded to item 6, 23% agreed with the statement, 73% disagreed
and 4% were undecided. A number of authorities, Tucker and Nolan (1984:115); Kirk,
Gallagher and Anastasiow (1997:380); Seligman and Darling (1989:225) contend that
although parents go through shock, anger, guilt and denial, they own total responsibility for
their children with hearing impairments. A study by Turnbull and Turnbull (1990:187), in
which they interviewed 250 parents, indicated that all parents expressed feelings of love
and responsibility for their children.
FIGURE 4.3.8.7
(ITEM 7) COUNSELING HELPED ME TO PLAN THE FUTURE OF MY CHILD
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Disagree
25
8.3
8.4
8.4
Disagree
62
20.7
20.9
29.3
Undecided
18
6.0
6.1
35.4
131
43.7
44.1
79.5
61
20.3
20.5
100.0
297
99.0
100.0
Agree
Strongly Agree
Total
— 106 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Missing System
Total
3
1.0
300
100.0
Of the 297 parents who responded to item 7, 65% agreed with the statement, 29% disagreed
and 6% were undecided.
FIGURE 4.3.8.8
(ITEM 8) WE DO NOT ALLOW OUR CHILD TO PLAY WITH OTHER
CHILDREN IN OUR COMMUNITY BECAUSE THEY MAY NOT TREAT HIM
WELL
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
19
6.3
6.4
6.4
Agree
37
12.3
12.5
18.9
Undecided
10
3.3
3.4
22.3
Disagree
121
40.3
40.9
63.2
Strongly Disagree
109
36.3
36.8
100.0
Total
296
98.7
100.0
4
1.3
300
100.0
Missing System
Total
6%
37%
13%
3%
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
41%
Of the 296 parents who responded to item 8, 19% agreed with the statement, 78%
disagreed and 3% were undecided. This question was included in the questionnaire
mainly to find out if parents had been given adequate guidance in terms of how they
should facilitate the socialization process of their child with hearing impairments.
Tucker and Nolan (1984:113) contend that, when counseling parents of children with
hearing impairments, there should be proper guidance given in terms of how parents
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
should handle other siblings and the importance of interaction between the child in
question and his/her siblings as well as other children of the same age. This process is
important for the social, psychological and language development of the child with
hearing impairments. Therefore I wanted to establish whether parents were made aware
of this important aspect concerning their child with hearing impairments. Not allowing
the child to interact with other children would deprive him/her quality time of
socialization with children of the same age.
FIGURE 4.3.8.9
(ITEM 9) MY
CHILD DOES NOT RELATE WELL AND INTERACT
EFFECTIVELY WITH OTHER MEMBERS OF THE FAMILY
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
19
6.3
6.3
6.3
Agree
88
29.3
29.3
35.7
Undecided
14
4.7
4.7
40.3
124
41.3
41.3
81.7
55
18.3
18.3
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
Total
18%
6%
Strongly Agree
29%
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
42%
5%
Strongly Disagree
Of the 300 parents who responded to item 9, 35% agreed with the statement, 60% disagreed
and 5% were undecided. This question is significant in terms of how the child with hearing
impairments relates to his/her siblings. According to Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:499)
although a large body of literature pertains to parental reactions, recent studies indicate that
siblings frequently experience the same emotions of shock, fear, anger and guilt. Parents
have an important role to play ensuring that there is effective interaction amongst all the
children. Guidance and counseling has a part to play in order to help parents promote
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
family harmony. Parents need proper guidance and counseling to facilitate and promote
understanding among their hearing children and the child with a hearing impairment.
Another study by Moores (1996:263) indicates that if parents are not counseled and guided
they may pay almost all their attention to the child with hearing impairment and neglect
other children. This may create feelings of not being loved in other children.
FIGURE 4.3.8.10 (ITEM 10) MOST PEOPLE WHO COUNSELED US TOLD US WHAT TO DO
Percent
Valid
Percent
34
11.3
11.8
11.8
147
49.0
50.9
62.6
Undecided
18
6.0
6.2
68.9
Disagree
69
23.0
23.9
92.7
Strongly Disagree
21
7.0
7.3
100.0
289
96.3
100.0
11
3.7
300
100.0
Frequency
Valid
Strongly Agree
Agree
Total
Missing System
Total
7%
Cumulative
Percent
12%
Strongly Agree
24%
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
6%
51%
Strongly Disagree
Of the 289 parents who responded to item 10, 63% agreed with the statement, 31%
disagreed and 6% were undecided. Different counselors employ different basic counseling
techniques depending on the needs of the clients. Most western counseling techniques are
non-directive while most traditional techniques are directive. Counseling techniques are
vitally important in establishing counseling relationships, empathy, listening skills and
creating a conducive environment for the clients to work through their emotions and think
rationally in order to find possible solutions to their problems (Nystul, 1999:193 and
Hallahan & Kauffman, 1994:498). In this case the counselor facilitates the conversation
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
and gives the client an opportunity to look at his/her problem from a positive standpoint.
Whereas traditional counseling is directive and involves advice giving (Mbiti, 1990:15).
This is mainly carried out by elders in the church, community and members of the extended
family (Richards, 2000:149). However, it must be pointed out that in both western and
traditional approaches, there are non-directive and directive counseling.
FIGURE 4.3.8.11 (ITEM 11) COUNSELING IS ESSENTIAL FOR PARENTS OF CHILDREN
WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
8
2.7
2.7
2.7
Disagree
14
4.7
4.7
7.3
Undecided
16
5.3
5.3
12.7
Agree
144
48.0
48.0
60.7
Strongly Agree
116
38.7
38.7
99.3
2
.7
.7
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Frequency
Valid
Strongly Disagree
Missing
Total
3%
5%
5%
39%
48%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
Undecided
Agree
Strongly Agree
Of the 298 parents who responded to item 11, 87% agreed with the statement, 8%
disagreed and 5% were undecided. These results clearly complement the literature that
validates the counseling need of parents of children with hearing impairments
(Luterman, 1991:316; Martin & Clark, 1996:193 and McConkey & Templer, 1986:68).
As pointed out by Moores (1996:374), the question is not whether parents need
counseling or not but whether they are able to access the counseling services they
desperately require.
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
FIGURE 4.3.8.12 (ITEM 12) THE COUNSELING WE RECEIVED DID NOT HELP US TO COPE
WITH THE CHILD AT ALL
Percent
Valid
Percent
6
2.0
2.0
2.0
Agree
59
19.7
20.1
22.2
Undecided
17
5.7
5.8
28.0
152
50.7
51.9
79.9
59
19.7
20.1
100.0
293
98.8
100.0
7
2.3
300
100.0
Frequency
Valid
Strongly Agree
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
Total
Missing System
Total
2%
20%
20%
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
6%
52%
Of the 293 parents who responded to item 12, 22% agreed with the statement, 72%
disagreed and 6% were undecided. These results indicate that counseling helped most of
the parents to cope with their children with hearing impairments. A study by Hardman,
Drew, Egan and Wolf (1993:279) indicates that most parents of children with hearing
impairments who received counseling and were interviewed, reported that they were
able to cope although they continued to experience communication and behavior
challenges from time to time.
FIGURE 4.3.8.13 (ITEM 13) I
AM AWARE OF ORGANIZATIONS THAT OFFER COUNSELING
IN ZIMBABWE
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Disagree
42
14.0
14.2
14.2
Disagree
78
26.0
26.4
40.7
— 111 —
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Percent
Valid
Percent
16
5.3
5.4
46.1
100
33.3
33.9
80.0
59
19.7
20.0
100.0
295
98.3
100.0
5
1.7
300
100.0
Frequency
Undecided
Agree
Strongly Agree
Total
Missing System
Total
Cumulative
Percent
14%
20%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
Undecided
26%
Agree
Strongly Agree
35%
5%
Of the 295 parents who responded to item 13, 55% agreed with the statement, 40%
disagreed and 5% were undecided. As indicated in figure 4.3.8.3, parents who were aware
of counseling organizations are in the majority by only 13.3%.
FIGURE 4.3.8.14 (ITEM 14) MY CHILD FITS WELL AND INTERACTS EFFECTIVELY WITH
FAMILY MEMBERS
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Disagree
14
4.7
4.7
4.7
Disagree
60
20.0
20.0
24.7
Undecided
10
3.3
3.3
28.0
158
52.7
52.7
80.7
58
19.3
19.3
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Agree
Strongly Agree
Total
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
5%
19%
Strongly Disagree
20%
Disagree
Undecided
3%
Agree
Strongly Agree
53%
Of the 300 parents who responded to item 14, 72% agreed with the statement, 25%
disagreed and 3% were undecided.
As indicated in figure 4.2.8.9, siblings are an
important component of a family structure. Parents are affected by the presence of a
child with hearing impairments amongst his/her hearing siblings. Therefore counselors
who deal with parents of children with hearing impairments, (Kirk, Gallagher &
Anastasiow, 1997:374), have to include the subject of siblings since they are part of the
family network and they complete the family cycle. In their study, Moores and Meadow
(1990:140) established that if parents are not properly guided about how to strike a
balance in terms of sharing resources, love and attention between the child with a
hearing impairment and the hearing children, the latter might be frustrated and in turn
frustrate the former together with the parents.
FIGURE 4.3.8.15 (ITEM 15) IT IS ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE TO PLAN THE FUTURE OF A CHILD
WHO IS HEARING IMPAIRED
Percent
Valid
Percent
82
27.3
27.8
27.8
141
47.0
47.8
75.6
Undecided
20
6.7
6.8
82.4
Disagree
40
13.3
13.6
95.9
Strongly Disagree
12
4.0
4.1
100.0
295
98.3
100.0
5
1.7
300
100.0
Frequency
Valid
Strongly Agree
Agree
Total
Missing System
Total
Cumulative
Percent
— 113 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
14%
4%
28%
Strongly Agree
Agree
7%
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
47%
Of the 295 parents who responded to item 15, 75% agreed with the statement, 18%
disagreed and 7% were undecided.
Throughout the literature there is an indication
(Hallahan & Kauffman, 1994:510; Cartwright, Cartwright & Ward, 1995:118 and Neel, et
al., 1988:211) that children with a hearing impairment, when offered a job, will do it well.
However, in reality there is a huge problem in them being able to secure employment. In
fact, as pointed out by Edgar (1987:558), most of them drop out of school before they
complete secondary education. Studies of what happens to such students during and after
their high school years suggest that a high percentage of them have difficulty in making
transition from high school to work. Many drop out of school, experience great difficulty
in finding and holding a job, do not find work suited to their capabilities and do not receive
further training and education, thus becoming dependent on their families (Edgar,
1987:559; Neel, Meadows, Levine & Edgar, 1988 and Rusch, Szymanski, & ChadseyRusch, 1992:13). It seems that these factors may be impacting on the views the parents
hold for planning for the future of their children with hearing impairments.
FIGURE 4.3.8.16 (ITEM 16) MOST COUNSELORS DID NOT GIVE US ANY GUIDANCE AT ALL
Frequency
Valid
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
28
9.3
10.0
10.0
Agree
47
15.7
16.8
26.8
Undecided
63
21.0
22.5
49.3
104
34.7
37.1
86.4
38
12.7
13.6
100.0
280
93.3
100.0
20
6.7
300
100.0
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
Total
Missing System
Total
Percent
— 114 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
10%
14%
Strongly Agree
17%
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
36%
Strongly Disagree
23%
Of the 280 parents who responded to item 16, 27% agreed with the statement, 50%
disagreed and 23% were undecided.
These results indicate that most parents were
counseled, guided to approach other professionals, and directed to suitable schools to have
their child enrolled. Hendrick, MacMillan and Barlow (1989:77) and Wolman, Bruininks
and Thurlow (1989:104) contend that effective counseling should include guidance and
referrals. It would appear that most professional counselors inform and provide their
clients with information pertaining to available services and resources.
FIGURE 4.3.8.17 (ITEM 17) WITHOUT
COUNSELING ONE CANNOT FULLY ACCEPT
HAVING A CHILD WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENT IN THE FAMILY
Frequency
Valid
Cumulative
Percent
19
6.3
6.4
6.4
Disagree
41
13.7
13.9
20.3
Undecided
11
3.7
3.7
24.0
137
45.7
46.3
70.3
88
29.3
29.7
100.0
296
98.7
100.0
4
1.3
300
100.0
Strongly Agree
Total
Total
Valid
Percent
Strongly
Disagree
Agree
Missing
Percent
System
— 115 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
6%
14%
30%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
4%
Undecided
Agree
Strongly Agree
46%
Of the 296 parents who responded to item 17, 76% agreed with the statement, 20%
disagreed and 4% were undecided. These results confirm the findings of Turnbull and
Turnbull (1990:496) who point out that although all the parents of children with hearing
impairments they interviewed expressed that they experienced shock, denial, sadness,
anger, fear and anxiety, they eventually accepted their positions after a lot of consultation
and counseling.
As indicated in figure 4.3.8.5, Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward
(1995:400) assert that engaging parents in guidance and counseling from an early stage
helps them to gradually accept their children with hearing impairments and participate
actively in their educational programmes.
FIGURE 4.3.8.18 (ITEM 18) WITH OR WITHOUT HELP FROM OTHER ORGANIZATIONS,
IT
IS PARENTS’ RESPONSIBILITY TO FULLY CATER FOR THEIR CHILDREN
WHO ARE HEARING IMPAIRED
Frequency
Valid
Cumulative
Percent
15
5.0
5.1
5.1
Disagree
48
16.0
16.3
21.4
7
2.3
2.4
23.7
146
48.7
49.5
73.2
79
26.3
26.8
100.0
295
98.3
100.0
5
1.7
300
100.0
Agree
Strongly Agree
Total
Total
Valid
Percent
Strongly
Disagree
Undecided
Missing
Percent
System
— 116 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
5%
Strongly Disagree
16%
27%
Disagree
2%
Undecided
Agree
Strongly Agree
50%
Of the 295 parents who responded to item 18, 77% agreed with the statement, 21%
disagreed and 2% were undecided. As indicated in figure 4.3.8.6, despite the difficulties
parents go through, there is overwhelming evidence that they (parents) eventually accept,
and take full responsibility for their children (Gartner, Lipsky & Turnbull, 1991:324 and
Fear & Woolfe, 1996:371).
FIGURE 4.3.8.19 (ITEM 19) WE ALLOW
OUR CHILD TO MAKE FRIENDS AND PLAY WITH
OTHER CHILDREN IN OUR NEIGHBORHOOD
Percent
Valid
Percent
8
2.7
2.7
2.7
Disagree
19
6.3
6.4
9.1
Undecided
11
3.7
3.7
12.8
193
64.3
65.2
78.0
65
21.7
22.0
100.0
296
98.7
100.0
4
1.3
300
100.0
Frequency
Valid
Strongly Disagree
Agree
Strongly Agree
Total
Missing System
Total
3%
Cumulative
Percent
6%
22%
4%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
Undecided
Agree
Strongly Agree
65%
— 117 —
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Of the 296 parents who responded to item 19, 87% agreed with the statement, 9% disagreed
and 4% were undecided. These results corroborate what is indicated in figure 4.3.8.8. It
appears parents have been made aware of the importance of child interaction and its
benefits.
As pointed out by Moores and Meadow (1990:125), children with hearing
impairments should be integrated into the community from an early age if they are to
enhance their social, psychological, and cognitive development.
FIGURE 4.3.8.20 (ITEM 20) THE
PROBLEM WITH COUNSELING IS THAT ONE IS NOT
PROVIDED WITH ANSWERS
Frequency
Valid
Strongly Disagree
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
28
9.3
9.9
9.9
108
36.0
38.2
48.1
Undecided
52
17.3
18.4
66.5
Agree
81
27.0
28.6
95.1
Strongly Agree
14
4.7
4.9
100.0
283
94.3
100.0
17
5.7
300
100.0
Disagree
Total
Missing
Percent
System
Total
5%
10%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
29%
Undecided
38%
18%
Agree
Strongly Agree
Of the 283 parents who responded to item 20, 34% agreed with the statement, 48%
disagreed and 18% were undecided.
— 118 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
FIGURE 4.3.8.21 (ITEM 21) PARENTS
CAN DO EQUALLY WELL FOR THEIR CHILD
WITHOUT GUIDANCE AND COUNSELING
Valid
Frequency
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Agree
Agree
19
81
6.3
27.0
6.5
27.8
6.5
34.4
Undecided
43
14.3
14.8
49.1
105
35.0
36.1
85.2
43
14.3
14.8
100.0
Disagree
Strongly
Disagree
Total
Missing
291
System
Total
97.0
9
3.0
300
100.0
100.0
7%
15%
Strongly Agree
28%
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
35%
Strongly Disagree
15%
Of the 291 parents who responded to item 21, 35% agreed with the statement, 50%
disagreed and 15 were undecided. Although 50% is not a resounding majority, this result
indicates the perceived need for counseling by the participants in this study. These results
corroborate the findings indicated in figure 4.3.8.11.
Most authorities concur that
counseling is invaluable to parents of children with disabilities (Tucker & Nolan, 1984:110;
Blocher, 2000:38; Bell, 1996:341).
Figure 4.3.8.22
(Item 22) Counseling really helped us to understand the child
Percent
Valid
Percent
8
2.7
2.7
2.7
Disagree
16
5.3
5.4
8.1
Undecided
16
5.3
5.4
13.6
Frequency
Valid
Strongly Disagree
Cumulative
Percent
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Agree
Strongly Agree
Total
Missing System
Total
156
52.0
52.9
66.4
99
33.0
33.6
100.0
295
98.3
100.0
5
1.7
300
100.0
3% 5%
5%
Strongly Disagree
34%
Disagree
Undecided
Agree
Strongly Agree
53%
Of the 295 parents who responded to item 22, 87% agreed with the statement, 8% disagreed
and 5% were undecided. These results endorse the findings of Burnett and Van Dorssen
(2000:248), Dale (1984:206) and Moores (1996:352) who assert that most parents that were
counseled and interviewed perceived that the counseling process helped them to understand
the emotional, sociological and psychological needs of their children. These results are
also confirmed in figure 4.3.8.4.
FIGURE 4.3.8.23 (ITEM
23)
COUNSELORS
ALSO
REFERRED
ME
TO
OTHER
PROFESSIONALS FOR FURTHER HELP
Frequency
Valid
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Disagree
36
12.0
12.4
12.4
Disagree
74
24.7
25.5
37.9
Undecided
22
7.3
7.6
45.5
110
36.7
37.9
83.4
48
16.0
16.6
100.0
290
96.7
100.0
10
3.3
Agree
Strongly Agree
Total
Missing System
Total
Percent
300
100.0
— 120 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
12%
17%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
Undecided
26%
Agree
Strongly Agree
37%
8%
Of the 290 parents who responded to item 23, 54% agreed with the statement, 38%
disagreed and 8% were undecided.
Referral in Zimbabwe is done through Schools
Psychological Services (SPS) and used to be very effective, particularly during the time of
the study. At present the system is still the same but due to economic hardships and limited
resources, it has been hard hit by the brain drain and the withdrawal of donor funds. As
pointed out by Mutasa (2000:34) the abolition of the department of screening and testing
for hearing loss by the Ministry of Education has caused a draw back for both children with
hearing impairments and their parents. Screening of hearing impairment is now done in
special schools and hospitals as it used to be in the initial stages of special education.
According to these results, it would appear that more participants were referred to other
professionals for further help than those who were not referred.
FIGURE 4.3.8.24 (ITEM 24) COUNSELING HELPED US TO COPE WITH OUR CHILD WHO IS
HEARING IMPAIRED
Frequency
Valid
Cumulative
Percent
3
1.0
1.0
1.0
Disagree
27
9.0
9.1
10.1
Undecided
16
5.3
5.4
15.5
166
55.3
56.1
71.6
84
28.0
28.4
100.0
296
98.7
100.0
4
1.3
300
100.0
Strongly Agree
Total
Total
Valid
Percent
Strongly
Disagree
Agree
Missing
Percent
System
— 121 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
1% 9%
28%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
Undecided
Agree
Strongly Agree
5%
57%
Of the 296 parents who responded to item 24, 85% agreed with the statement, 10%
disagreed and 5% were undecided. As indicated in figure 4.3.8.12 the participants
confirmed that counseling helped them to cope with their children with hearing
impairments. These results are supported by the findings of Webster and Ellwood
(1985:94); Luterman (1991:156) and Kauffman (1992:304), who contend that counseled
families that have children with disabilities tend to accept and cope with the upbringing
of their children irrespective of the difficulties they go through.
FIGURE 4.3.8.25 (ITEM 25) GUIDANCE
AND COUNSELING ARE IMPORTANT FOR BOTH
PARENTS AND THE CHILD
Frequency
Valid
Cumulative
Percent
26
8.7
8.8
8.8
Disagree
71
23.7
24.1
32.9
Undecided
12
4.0
4.1
36.9
114
38.0
38.6
75.6
72
24.0
24.4
100.0
295
98.3
100.0
5
1.7
300
100.0
Strongly Agree
Total
Missing System
Total
Valid
Percent
Strongly Disagree
Agree
Total
Percent
— 122 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
9%
24%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
24%
Undecided
Agree
4%
Strongly Agree
39%
Of the 295 parents who responded to item 25, 63% agreed with the statement, 33%
disagreed and 4% were undecided. Studies were carried out by Lobato (1990:183) where
he compared families that had children with disabilities.
In some only parents were
counseled, in some both the parents and the child with disabilities was counseled, while in
others parents, the child with disabilities and other siblings were counseled. The most
socially, psychologically and emotionally healthy families that seemed to have been
progressing well were families that had all their members counseled. Similar findings were
reported by Moores and Meadow (1990:127) and Vernon and Andrews (1990:145). It is
therefore apparent that counseling is important for all members of the family in which a
child with disabilities is born.
FIGURE 4.3.8.26 (ITEM 26) IT IS DIFFICULT TO SEPARATE COUNSELING FROM ADVICE
Frequency
Valid
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Strongly Disagree
39
13.0
13.3
13.3
Disagree
97
32.3
33.1
46.4
Undecided
33
11.0
11.3
57.7
Agree
97
32.3
33.1
90.8
Strongly Agree
27
9.0
9.2
100.0
293
97.7
100.0
7
2.3
300
100.0
Total
Missing System
Total
Percent
— 123 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
9%
13%
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
Undecided
33%
34%
Agree
Strongly Agree
11%
Of the 293 parents who responded to item 26, 42% agreed with the statement, 47%
disagreed and 11% were undecided. As indicated in figure 4.3.8.10 some counseling
techniques are directive. The counselor guides and leads the client into a situation where
he/she can view the problem is more rational and positive way (Burnard, 1992:93). Some
words of advice may be used in a subtle manner to enable the client gain a more view of
his/her problem.
Some of the participants may not have been very clear about the
distinction between counseling and advice. This question was mainly to find whether
participants had in their minds a clear distinction between counseling and advice.
Having analyzed all items one at a time, the next aspect would be to establish the
correlations between different variables. These include gender of parents versus their
sources of counseling, what they say about coping with their children, gender of children
and what parents say about coping as well as age of children and what parents say about
coping.
4.4
CORRELATION BETWEEN THE GENDER OF PARENTS AND WHERE
THEY OBTAINED COUNSELING, WHAT THEY SAY ABOUT COPING
WITH THE CHILD WITH A HEARING IMPAIRMENT, AGE OF
CHILDREN AND WHAT PARENTS SAY ABOUT COPING
It is important to note that when the percentage of cells in the table that ‘have expected
countless than 5’ is high, especially 20% or more, chi-squared is not reliable. Also when
the sign value in the table of the chi-squared along the ‘Pearson Chi-Square’ row or
‘Likelihood Ratio’ row is bigger than (0.05) there is no association or relationship. When it
is 0.05 or less then the row and column factors are correlated or there is a relationship.
— 124 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
When the sources of counseling where analyzed one at a time, some of the sources had too
few frequencies; therefore sources were combined in order to obtain reliable results.
As pointed out above, in order to obtain a more reliable result, I combined some of the
categories with small frequencies to get three sources of counseling, namely:
•
Special Schools
•
Counseling organizations, Churches, Hospitals
•
Relatives, Individuals, Friends
Table 4.4.1
First source of counseling – A1 Gender of parents cross tabulation
A1 Gender of Parents
A1 First
Source of
Counseling
Special Schools
Counseling
organizations,
Churches, Hospitals
Male
Female
Count
76
93
% within A1 Gender
of Parents
68.5%
Count
31
% within A1 Gender
of Parents
Total
Relatives, Individuals
Count
& Friends
% within A1 Gender
of Parents
Count
% within A1 Gender
of Parents
69.4%
24
27.9%
4
17.9%
17
3.6%
111
100.0%
12.7%
Total
169
69.0%
55
22.4%
21
8.6%
134
245
100.0%
100.0%
Chi-Square Tests
Value
Pearson Chi-Square
df
Asymp. Sig. (2-sided)
8.565(a)
2
.014
Likelihood Ratio
9.106
2
.011
Linear-by-Linear Association
.978
1
.323
N of Valid Cases
245
— 125 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Zero cells (.0%) have expected count less than 5. The minimum expected count is 9.51.
Now all expected frequencies of counseling sources are larger than 5, so results are quite
reliable. Basing on the Sign (p) value of 0.014, we can conclude that there is a fairly strong
association between First Source of counseling information and gender of parents. The
percentages indicate that about the same proportion of males (68.5%) and females (69.4%)
use special schools for counseling. The significant differences arises from the fact that
relatively more male parents (27.9%) use Counseling organizations, Churches and/or
Hospitals, compared to female parents (17.9%), while fewer male parents (3.6%) turn to
Relatives, Individuals and Friends compared to female parents (12.7%).
Table 4.4.2 Second source of counseling – A2 Gender of parents
A2 Gender of Parents
Male
A2 Second
Source of
Counseling
Counseling
Count
Organizations
Churches
Hospitals
Relatives
Individuals
Total
% within A2
Parents
Count
% within A2
Parents
Count
% within A2
Parents
Count
% within A2
Parents
Count
% within A2
Parents
Count
% within A2
Parents
39
Gender of
41.9%
17
Gender of
18.3%
24
Gender of
Gender of
Gender of
Gender of
25.8%
Total
Female
52
91
51.0%
46.7%
15
32
14.7%
16.4%
13
37
12.7%
19.0%
7
6
13
7.5%
5.9%
6.7%
6
16
22
6.5%
15.7%
11.3%
93
102
195
100.0%
100.0%
100.0%
— 126 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Chi-Square Tests
Pearson Chi-Square
Value
df
9.480(a)
4
.050
9.687
4
.046
.014
1
.907
Likelihood Ratio
Linear-by-Linear Association
Asymp. Sig. (2-sided)
McNemar Test
N of Valid Cases
195
Zero cells (.0%) have expected count less than 5. The minimum expected count is 6.20.
With respect to the second source of Information, there is a moderate association (p =
0.050) between second source of information and the gender of the participants in the
study. The main sources of differences appear to be in use of Counseling organizations,
Hospitals and Individuals. Relatively more males use hospitals (25.8%) than females
(12.7%), while more females use Counseling organizations (51.0%) and turn to individuals
(15.7%) than males (41.9% and 6.5% respectively). The results are reliable since all
expected frequencies are greater than 5.
TABLE 4.4.3
THIRD SOURCE OF COUNSELING – A3 GENDER OF PARENTS
A3 Gender of Parents
Male
A3 Third Source of
Counseling
Churches
Hospitals
Relatives
Individuals
Total
Count
27
% within A3 Gender of Parents
38.0%
Count
14
% within A3 Gender of Parents
19.7%
Count
17
6
% within A3 Gender of Parents
23.9%
7.0%
Count
13
20
% within A3 Gender of Parents
18.3%
Count
71
% within A3 Gender of Parents
100.0%
Total
Female
34
39.5%
26
30.2%
23.3%
61
38.9%
40
25.5%
23
14.6%
33
21.0%
86
157
100.0%
100.0%
— 127 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Chi-Square Tests
Value
df
9.805(a)
3
.020
10.004
3
.019
Linear-by-Linear Association
.212
1
.645
N of Valid Cases
157
Pearson Chi-Square
Likelihood Ratio
Asymp. Sig. (2-sided)
Zero cells (.0%) have expected count less than 5. The minimum expected count is 10.40.
Again, the relationship between gender and the third source of counseling information is
fairly strong (p = 0.020). Relatively more males turn to Relatives while relatively more
females turn to Hospitals. Proportions turning to Churches and Individuals do not appear to
differ much between genders.
Table 4.4.4 (Item 1) Although we received guidance and counseling, we still cannot
cope with the child – A5 Gender of parents
A4 Gender of Parents
A4 1. Although
we received
Agree/Strongly
guidance and I, we
Agree
still cannot cope
with the child.
Neutral
Count
% within A4 Gender of
Parents
Count
% within A4 Gender of
Parents
Disagree/Strongly
Count
Disagree
% within A4 Gender of
Parents
Total
Count
% within A4 Gender of
Parents
Total
Male
Female
61
54
115
36.0%
42.8%
4
5
9
3.4%
3.3%
3.3%
54
91
145
45.4%
60.7%
53.9%
119
150
269
100.0%
100.0%
100.0%
51.3%
— 128 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
CHI-SQUARE TESTS
Value
df
6.492(a)
2
.039
Likelihood Ratio
6.504
2
.039
Linear-by-Linear Association
6.466
1
.011
Pearson Chi-Square
Asymp. Sig. (2-sided)
McNemar Test
N of Valid Cases
269
a.1 cells (16.7%) have expected count less than 5. The minimum expected count is 3.98.
There is a fairly strong association (p = 0.039) observed between gender and agreement or
disagreement with the comment that “Although we received guidance and counseling, we
still cannot cope with the child”. Relatively more males (51.3%) agree compared to
females (36.0%) while more females disagree (60.7%) compared with males (45.4%)
TABLE 4.4.5
(ITEM 2) COUNSELING HELPED US TO COPE WITH OUT CHILD WHO IS
HEARING IMPAIRED –
A5 GENDER OF CHILDREN
A5 Gender of Children
Boy
A5. Counseling
helped us to cope
with our child
who is hearing
impaired.
Strongly
Disagree
Disagree
Undecided
Agree
Count
% within A5
Gender of
Children
Count
% within A5
Gender of
Children
Count
% within A5
Gender of
Children
Count
% within A5
Gender of
Children
Girl
Total
Both
2
1
0
3
1.2%
1.0%
.0%
1.1%
20
7
0
27
12.4%
6.7%
.0%
10.1%
4
10
0
14
2.5%
9.5%
.0%
5.2%
92
55
0
147
57.1%
52.4%
.0%
55.1%
— 129 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Strongly
Agree
Count
% within A5
Gender of
Children
Count
% within A5
Gender of
Children
Total
43
32
1
76
26.7%
30.5%
100.0%
28.5%
161
105
1
267
100.0%
100.0%
100.0%
100.0%
Chi-Square Tests
Value
Pearson Chi-Square
Likelihood Ratio
Linear-by-Linear Association
df
Asymp. Sig. (2-sided)
11.237(a)
8
.189
11.201
8
.191
1.818
1
.178
McNemar Test
N of Valid Cases
267
a. 7 cells (46.7%) have expected count less than 5. The minimum expected count is .01.
The results in the chi-squared tests table (above) suggest that there is no relationship
between coping/not coping after receiving counseling and gender of child, basing on Sign
(p) value of (0.189). However, test results in this instance is not reliable since seven cells
(46.7%) have expected count less than 5 as indicated under the table. When the percentage
exceeds 20%, the chi-squared result becomes unreliable.
TABLE 4.4.6
(ITEM 3) THE
COUNSELING WE RECEIVED DID NOT HELP US TO COPE
WITH THE CHILD AT ALL –
A6 AGE OF CHILDREN
A6 Age of Children
5-8yrs
6. The
counseling we
Agree/
received did not
Strongly
help us to cope
Agree
with the child at
all.
Count
14
9-13yrs
25
14-18yrs
20
Total
9-13 and
14-18
0
— 130 —
59
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
A6 Age of Children
5-8yrs
Neutral
Disagree/
Strongly
Disagree
Total
% within A6
Age of
Children
Count
% within A6
Age of
Children
9-13 and
14-18
9-13yrs
14-18yrs
22.6%
18.7%
30.8%
.0%
22.3%
5
9
3
0
17
8.1%
6.7%
4.6%
.0%
6.4%
43
100
42
3
188
69.4%
74.6%
64.6%
100.0
%
71.2%
62
134
65
3
264
100.0%
100.0%
100.0%
Count
% within A6
Age of
Children
Count
% within A6
Age of
Children
Total
100.0%
100.0%
Chi-Square Tests
Value
df
Asymp. Sig. (2-sided)
5.347(a)
6
.500
Likelihood Ratio
6.028
6
.420
Linear-by-Linear Association
.563
1
.453
Pearson Chi-Square
McNemar Test
N of Valid Cases
264
a. 5 cells (41.7%) have expected count less than 5. The minimum expected count is .19.
The results in the chi-squared tests table (above) suggest that there is no relationship
between coping after receiving counseling and the age of child, basing on Sign (p) value of
(0.500). Also test result is not reliable since five cells (41.7%) have expected count less
than 5 as indicated under the table. When the percentage exceeds 20%, the chi-squared
result becomes unreliable.
I can therefore conclude that analysis of both male and female responses indicates that there
was no relationship between age of child and inability or ability to cope with the child even
— 131 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
after receiving guidance and counseling. Similarly there was no relationship between
gender of child and coping or failing to cope with child after receiving counseling. The
next part of the study sought to establish the reliability and validity of the instrument as a
whole analyzing positive items versus their negative counterparts.
4.5
DEGREE OF CONSISTENCY BETWEEN POSITIVE AND NEGATIVELY
PHRASED ITEMS
The instrument used in this study has 13 positive items and their 13 direct negative items.
The next part of presentation and analysis of results is mainly to cross check the degree of
consistency by participants in terms of how they responded to positive and negative items.
I would like to establish if for instance participants who marked “Strongly Agree” or
“Agree” on item 11 also marked “Strongly Disagree” or “Disagree “ on item 1, which is its
negative counterpart. This to a certain extent will establish the validity and reliability of
the instrument. As stated by Cohen and Manion (1989:111), it is important to have a valid
and reliable instrument that produces reliable data.
In tables 4.3.2.1a and 4.3.3.1b summarizing the raw scores on each item will indicate
degrees of consistency/inconsistency. This will be followed by item analysis that shows
consistency/inconsistency in terms of percentages per item. Results are indicated in the
respective tables.
TABLE 4.5.1
DEGREE
OF
CONSISTENCY
BETWEEN
POSITIVE
AND
NEGATIVELY
Very
Inconsistent
Extremely
Inconsistent
172
108
12
2
6
300
2-26. Utility of the counseling received.
116
51
80
40
9
296
3-13. Awareness of any organization that
offers counseling in Zimbabwe.
222
42
26
3
2
295
Total
Moderately
Inconsistent
1-11. The need for Counseling of Parents of
children with hearing impairments.
Pair of Items and Attribute
Consistent
Slightly
Inconsistent
PHRASED ITEMS
— 132 —
Very
Inconsistent
Extremely
Inconsistent
240
37
6
4
2
5-17. Counseling and Acceptance of the idea
of having a hearing impaired child in the
family.
244
40
4
4
6-18. Who should look after children who
are impaired.
236
39
11
3
4
293
70
55
87
59
24
295
8-19. Allowing child to play with other
children in our community.
130
98
34
24
8
294
9-14. Child’s relation and interaction with
other members of the family.
157
65
57
15
6
300
10-20. Most people who counseled us told us
what to do.
177
49
48
2
5
281
12-24. Coping with child after receiving
guidance and counseling.
184
55
22
23
5
289
16-23. Assistance vs. Referral to other
professionals for further help.
183
58
23
11
3
278
21-25. Importance of Guidance and
counseling to Parents.
185
73
28
2
3
291
Pair of Items and Attribute
7-15. Counseling in planning for the future
of my child.
TABLE 4.5.2 DEGREE
OF
CONSISTENCY
BETWEEN
POSITIVE
AND
Total
Moderately
Inconsistent
4-22. Counseling and understanding the
needs of our child.
Consistent
Slightly
Inconsistent
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
289
292
NEGATIVELY
Consistent
Slightly
Inconsistent
Moderately
Inconsistent
Very
Inconsistent
Extremely
Inconsistent
Total
PHRASED ITEMS PERCENTAGE
1-11. The need for Counseling of
Parents of children with hearing
impairments.
57.3
36.0
4.0
.7
2.0
100.0
2-26 Utility of the counseling received.
39.1
17.3
27.0
13.5
3.1
100.0
3-13. Awareness of any organization
that offers counseling in Zimbabwe.
75.3
14.2
8.8
1.0
.7
100.0
4-22. Counseling and understanding the
needs of our child.
83.0
12.8
2.1
1.4
.7
100.0
Pair of Items and Attribute
— 133 —
Moderately
Inconsistent
Very
Inconsistent
83.6
13.7
1.4
1.4
6-18. Who should look after
children who are impaired.
80.5
13.3
3.8
1.0
1.4
100.0
7-15. Counseling in planning for the
future of my child.
23.7
18.6
29.5
20.0
8.1
100.0
8-19. Allowing child to play with
other children in our community.
44.2
33.3
11.6
8.2
2.7
100.0
9-14. Child’s relation and
interaction with other members of
the family.
52.3
21.7
19.0
5.0
2.0
100.0
10-20. Most people who counseled
us told us what to do.
63.0
17.4
17.1
.7
1.8
100.0
12-24 Coping with child after
receiving guidance and counseling.
63.9
19.2
7.8
7.9
1.8
100.0
16-23. Assistance vs. Referral to
other professionals for further help.
65.8
20.9
8.3
4.0
1.1
100.0
21-25. Importance of Guidance and
counseling to Parents.
63.6
25.1
9.6
.7
1.0
100.0
(ITEM 1-11) THE
Total
Slightly
Inconsistent
5-17. Counseling and Acceptance of
the idea of having a hearing
impaired child in the family.
TABLE 4.5.3
Extremely
Inconsistent
Pair of Items and Attribute
Consistent
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
100.0
NEED FOR COUNSELING OF PARENTS OF CHILDREN
WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Consistent
172
57.3
57.3
57.3
Slightly Inconsistent
108
36.0
36.0
93.3
12
4.0
4.0
97.3
Very Inconsistent
2
.7
.7
98.0
Extremely
Inconsistent
6
2.0
2.0
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Moderately
Inconsistent
Total
— 134 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
TABLE 4.5.4
(ITEM 2-26) COUNSELING IS TOTALLY DIFFERENT FROM ADVICE
Valid
Cumulative
Percent
Percent
Valid
Percent
117
39.1
39.1
39.1
Slightly Inconsistent
52
17.3
17.3
56.4
Moderately
Inconsistent
81
27.0
27.0
83.4
Very Inconsistent
41
13.5
13.5
96.9
Extremely
Inconsistent
9
3.1
3.1
100.0
300
100.0
100.0
Frequency
Consistent
Total
TABLE 4.5.5
(ITEM 3-13) AWARENESS
OF ANY ORGANIZATION THAT OFFERS
COUNSELING IN ZIMBABWE
Percent
Valid
Percent
222
74.0
75.3
75.3
Slightly Inconsistent
42
14.0
14.2
89.5
Moderately
Inconsistent
26
8.7
8.8
98.3
Very Inconsistent
3
1.0
1.0
99.3
Extremely
Inconsistent
2
.7
.7
100.0
295
98.3
100.0
5
1.7
Frequency
Valid
Consistent
Total
Missing System
TABLE 4.5.6
(ITEM 4-22) COUNSELING
Cumulative
Percent
AND UNDERSTANDING THE NEEDS OF OUR
CHILD
Percent
Valid
Percent
240
80.0
83.0
83.0
37
12.3
12.8
95.8
Moderately
Inconsistent
6
2.0
2.1
97.9
Very Inconsistent
4
1.3
1.4
99.3
Frequency
Valid
Consistent
Slightly Inconsistent
Cumulative
Percent
— 135 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Extremely
Inconsistent
Total
Missing System
Total
TABLE 4.5.7
2
.7
.7
289
96.3
100.0
11
3.7
300
100.0
100.0
(ITEM 5-17) COUNSELING AND ACCEPTANCE OF THE IDEA OF HAVING A
HEARING IMPAIRED CHILD IN THE FAMILY
Percent
Valid
Percent
244
81.3
83.6
83.6
40
13.3
13.7
97.3
Moderately
Inconsistent
4
1.3
1.4
98.6
Very Inconsistent
4
1.3
1.4
100.0
292
97.3
100.0
8
2.7
300
100.0
Frequency
Valid
Consistent
Slightly Inconsistent
Total
Missing System
Total
TABLE 4.5.8
(ITEM 6-18) WHO
Cumulative
Percent
SHOULD LOOK AFTER CHILDREN WHO ARE
IMPAIRED?
Percent
Valid
Percent
236
78.7
80.5
80.5
Slightly Inconsistent
39
13.0
13.3
93.9
Moderately
Inconsistent
11
3.7
3.8
97.6
Very Inconsistent
3
1.0
1.0
98.6
Extremely
Inconsistent
4
1.3
1.4
100.0
293
97.7
100.0
7
2.3
300
100.0
Frequency
Valid
`
Consistent
Total
Missing System
Total
Cumulative
Percent
— 136 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
TABLE 4.5.9
(ITEM 7-15) PLANNING FOR THE FUTURE OF MY CHILD
Frequency
Valid
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Consistent
70
23.3
23.7
23.7
Slightly Inconsistent
55
18.3
18.6
42.4
Moderately
Inconsistent
87
29.0
29.5
71.9
Very Inconsistent
59
19.7
20.0
91.9
Extremely
Inconsistent
24
8.0
8.1
100.0
295
98.3
100.0
Total
TABLE 4.5.10
Percent
(ITEM 8-19) ALLOWING MY CHILD TO PLAY WITH OTHER CHILDREN IN
OUR COMMUNITY
Frequency
Valid
Consistent
Cumulative
Percent
78.7
80.5
80.5
Slightly Inconsistent
39
13.0
13.3
93.9
Moderately
Inconsistent
11
3.7
3.8
97.6
Very Inconsistent
3
1.0
1.0
98.6
Extremely
Inconsistent
4
1.3
1.4
100.0
293
97.7
100.0
7
2.3
System
Total
300
TABLE 4.5.11
Valid
Percent
236
Total
Missing
Percent
100.0
(ITEM 9-14) CHILD’S RELATION AND INTERACTION WITH OTHER
MEMBERS OF THE FAMILY
Frequency
Valid
Consistent
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
157
52.3
52.3
52.3
Slightly Inconsistent
65
21.7
21.7
74.0
Moderately
Inconsistent
57
19.0
19.0
93.0
Very Inconsistent
15
5.0
5.0
98.0
— 137 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Percent
Valid
Percent
6
2.0
2.0
300
100.0
100.0
Frequency
Extremely
Inconsistent
Total
TABLE 4.4.12
Consistent
Slightly Inconsistent
Moderately
Inconsistent
Very Inconsistent
Extremely
Inconsistent
Total
Missing System
Total
TABLE 4.5.13
Percent
Valid
Percent
177
59.0
63.0
63.0
49
16.3
17.4
80.4
48
16.0
17.1
97.5
2
.7
.7
98.2
5
1.7
1.8
100.0
281
93.7
100.0
19
6.3
300
100.0
Consistent
Slightly Inconsistent
Moderately
Inconsistent
Very Inconsistent
Extremely Inconsistent
Total
Missing
Total
Cumulative
Percent
(ITEM 12-26) UTILITY OF THE COUNSELING RECEIVED
Frequency
Valid
100.0
(ITEM 10-20) MOST PEOPLE WHO COUNSELED US TOLD US WHAT TO DO
Frequency
Valid
Cumulative
Percent
System
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
113
37.7
39.1
39.1
50
16.7
17.3
56.4
78
26.0
27.0
83.4
39
13.0
13.5
96.9
9
3.0
3.1
100.0
289
96.3
100.0
11
3.7
300
100.0
— 138 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
TABLE 4.5.14
(ITEM 16-23) ASSISTANCE
VS.
REFERRAL
TO OTHER PROFESSIONALS
FOR FURTHER HELP
Frequency
Valid
Consistent
Slightly Inconsistent
Moderately
Inconsistent
Very Inconsistent
Extremely Inconsistent
Total
Missing
System
Total
TABLE 4.5.15
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
183
61.0
65.8
65.8
58
19.3
20.9
86.7
23
7.7
8.3
95.0
11
3.7
4.0
98.9
3
1.0
1.1
100.0
278
92.7
100.0
22
7.3
300
100.0
(ITEM 21-25) IMPORTANCE
OF GUIDANCE AND COUNSELING TO
PARENTS
Percent
Valid
Percent
185
73
61.7
24.3
63.6
25.1
Cumulati
ve
Percent
63.6
88.7
28
9.3
9.6
98.3
2
.7
.7
99.0
3
1.0
1.0
291
9
100.0
97.0
3.0
100.0
Frequency
Valid
Consistent
Slightly Inconsistent
Moderately
Inconsistent
Very Inconsistent
Extremely
Inconsistent
Total
Missing System
Total
300
TABLE 4.5.16
100.0
SUMMARY OF ITEM CONSISTENCY BY PERCENTAGE
Negative to positive
items
Consistent
Inconsistent
Neutral
Total
1-11
93.3
2.7
4.0
100.0
2-26
56.4
16.6
27.0
100.0
3-13
89.5
1.7
8.8
100.0
— 139 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
4-22
95.8
2.1
2.1
100.0
5-17
97.3
1.4
1.4
100.0
6-18
93.8
2.4
3.8
100.0
7-15
42.3
28.1
29.5
100.0
8-19
77.5
10.9
11.6
100.0
9-14
74.0
10.0
19.0
100.0
10-20
80.4
2.5
17.1
100.0
12-24
82.5
7.8
9.6
100.0
16-23
86.7
5.1
8.3
100.0
21-25
88.7
1,7
9.6
100.0
Participants’ responses were highly consistent on 22 of the 26 items, the exceptions being
items 2-26, and 7-15. It may imply that these items were poorly phrased, not clear or were
not specific enough.
As a whole the instrument used in this study produced highly
consistent responses. For example responses to items eight versus 19 and nine versus 14
have a degree of consistency above 70%. Items 10 versus 20, 12 versus 24, 16 versus 23
and 21 versus 25 have degrees of consistency from 80% to 89% respectively. Items 1
versus 11 and 6 versus 18 were very consistent with 93% degree of consistency. These
items can be said to be very reliable. It may mean that they were clear and measured what
they purported to measure. It may also be a clear indication that response and positional
bias were successfully controlled for and hence objectivity and internal validity were
achieved. This further enhances the reliability of the research results. Babbie and Mouton
(2001:27) point out that validity and reliability of a research is largely dependent on the
method and instrument used to collect data. The results of this study will be discussed in
detail in the next chapter.
4.6
QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS ON THE OPEN-ENDED QUESTIONNAIRE
TO PARENTS
Qualitative analysis was used on items one to six on the open-ended questionnaire to
parents. The first item was on five major difficulties parents experienced in raising their
children with hearing impairments, the second was on organizations and individuals that
counseled them, the third one was on whether the counseling they received helped them or
not, that is if they received any counseling at all. The fourth one was on whether they
— 140 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
thought counseling helped them (parents) to cope with their children or not. The fifth one
sought their views on what they thought could be done in order to make counseling more
accessible to parents, and the sixth was on how guidance and counseling could help them
more. The results are presented in the form of charts and tables. The analysis of these
responses was made in the following way: a comprehensive overview of the data was
gained by reading through all the results of the qualitative part of the questionnaires. The
results were then considered item by item by reading the results across items. Key aspects
and/or themes that were mentioned by a majority of the participants in their responses to
each item were written down. Then the data was checked again and simple counting
methods were used to count the number of participants whose responses indicated a
particular theme/key aspect.
In the next section these quantified results will be presented by indicating the number of
participants that presented a particular theme in the results. This will be followed by a
section where examples from the raw data will be shared, to indicate the qualitative
dimensions in the responses from the participants.
FIGURE 4.6.1:
NUMBER OF PARENTS WHO RESPONDED TO ITEMS 1-6
14%
15%
Item 1
Item 2
17%
17%
Item 3
Item 4
Item 5
19%
18%
Item 6
Each item is presented in a table numbered with a chapter number point item number. For
example item 1 is numbered table 4.2.1, item 6 is numbered table 4.2.6, etc. Percentages
used in these results have been rounded up or down to the nearest whole number. One
hundred and eighty two (182) parents, (15%) responded to item 1, 208 parents (17%)
responded to item 2, 218 parents (18%) responded to item 3, 226 parents (19%) responded
to item 4, 206 parents (17%) responded to item 5 and 172 parents (14%) responded to item
6.
— 141 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
TABLE 4.6.2
FIVE
MAJOR DIFFICULTIES PARENTS EXPERIENCED IN RAISING THEIR
CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
Community negative attitude towards the child
68
24%
Teaching the child basic living skills
122
43%
Communication
146
52%
Money for fees and hearing aids
130
46%
Transporting the child to school and hospital
42
15%
One hundred and eighty two (182) parents responded to item 1 and the results were as
indicated. Communication seems to be the biggest problem, followed by shortage of
financial resources to pay fees and purchase hearing aids for the child. This is followed by
teaching the child basic living skills, then societal negative attitude towards the child and
finally lack of means to transport the child to school and visit the hospital.
TABLE 4.6.3
ORGANIZATIONS AND/OR INDIVIDUALS THAT COUNSELED THE PARENTS
Parents counseled by church counselors
Parents counseled by hospital counselors
Parents counseled by counselors in special schools
Parents counseled by relatives and friends
25
62
46
75
12%
30%
22%
36%
Two hundred and eight (208) parents responded to item 2, and the results were as indicated.
Twelve percent of the parents obtained counseling from churches, 30% from hospitals,
22% from special schools and 36% from relatives and friends. Participants are not very
keen to spend a lot of time answering taxing questions, this may explain why only 208
parents responded to this item.
TABLE 4.6.4
WHETHER
OR NOT PARENTS RECEIVED COUNSELING AND HOW IT
HELPED THEM IF THEY RECEIVED IT
Yes
No
Helped me to fully accept the child
212
6
152
97%
3%
54%
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Two hundred and eighteen (218) parent-participants responded to item 3, and the results
were as indicated. Ninety seven percent (97%) of the participants agreed that they received
counseling. This percentage relates to the one on quantitative data, item (vi) where 90%
agreed that they received counseling, 54% agreed that counseling helped them to accept
their children with hearing impairments, which also correlates to the earlier findings on
table 4.3.8.5. It is interesting to note that 3% of the participants indicated that they did not
receive counseling, while 10% indicated so when 300 participants responded, as shown in
table 4.3.2.1.
TABLE 4.6.5
WHETHER
OR NOT PARENTS THOUGHT THE COUNSELING THEY
RECEIVED HELPED THEM TO COPE WITH THEIR CHILD.
IF
THEY
THOUGHT IT HELPED, THEIR VIEWS ON HOW IT HELPED WERE SOUGHT
Yes
196
70%
No
27
10%
162
57%
Helped me to cope with the child
Two hundred and twenty six (226) parents responded to item 4, and the results were as
indicated. Seventy percent (70%) agreed that the counseling they received helped the to
cope with their children with hearing impairment, 10% indicated that counseling did not
help them to cope with their children and 57% indicated that they were able to cope with
the child after counseling.
TABLE 4.6.6
PARENTS’ VIEWS ON WHAT COULD BE DONE TO MAKE COUNSELING
MORE ACCESSIBLE TO PARENTS
Awareness campaigns using the media, posters and
advertisements
100
35%
Seminars and workshops
214
76%
Parents support groups where parents meet share problems
and possible solutions
106
38%
Two hundred and six (206) parents responded to item 5, and the results were as indicated.
Seventy six percent (76%) of the participants suggested that seminars and workshops
would inform more people of the available counseling services, 38% suggested that parents
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
support groups would help especially when parents who have similar problems share
possible solutions to their problems and 35% suggested awareness campaigns using the
media, posters, and advertisements over the radio and/or on television.
TABLE 4.6.7
HOW
PARENTS COULD BE HELPED MORE THROUGH GUIDANCE AND
COUNSELING
Counseling the hearing impaired child
46
16%
Help parents to cope and to integrate the child into the
family
86
30%
Help parents to plan the future of the child
70
25%
One hundred and seventy two (172) parents responded to item 6, and the results were as
indicated. Thirty percent (30%) of the parents who responded suggested that guidance and
counseling should equip them with strategies that will enable them to cope with their
children and further integrate them into the family. Twenty five percent (25%) suggested
that guidance and counseling should help parents plan the future of their children and 16%
suggested that children with hearing impairments should receive guidance and counseling.
4.7
INTERPRETATION OF QUALITATIVE RESULTS ON THE OPENENDED QUESTIONNAIRE TO PARENTS
Parents of children with hearing impairments have an important contribution to make
towards the counseling of other parents and students with disabilities. However, very little
attention is paid to understanding them in terms of their opinions and knowledge about
counseling, their views on how parents can have easy access to counseling and how
counseling can be improved (Tucker & Nolan, 1984:112). In answer to the question ‘What
five major difficulties did you meet in raising your child with a hearing impairment?’ Out
of 300 parents, 182 responded to this question. Several different responses were given but
of these five were stood out. Sixty eight (68) participants, (24%) of the parents indicated
negative attitude from the community towards the child with hearing impairments. Some
of the comments were as follows, “Amazement attitude from the community as they
gaze at you till you are out of sight as if there is something terribly wrong with you
and your child”, “Some people watch you as you communicate with the child and
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
laugh as if they are watching an interesting film”, 122 participants, (43%) indicated a
difficulty in teaching the child basic living skills. Some of the comments expressed were;
“It was a nightmare to teach her toilet and eating habits, as well as general cleanliness
without a language”, “Teaching her how to eat, dress, use the toilet and clean herself
was difficult and embarrassing if you had visitors”, 146 participants, (52%) indicated
communication problems. Some of the direct comments; “It was frustrating in failing to
communicate with my child”, “I felt frustrated to communicate with the child signing
without understanding each other, especially where there was a group of people”, 130
participants, (46%) indicated financial difficulties. Some of the parents’ comments,
“Taking the child to the hospital for interviews and treatment was a problem due to
shortage of money. This made her go to school at 11 years”, “I sold 5 oxen to visit
witch doctors and private doctors till all the money was finished before the child
started school”, 42 participants, (15%), indicated transport problems. Some of the
comments expressed were; “It was difficult to carry the child on one’s back from the
village to the bus stop in order to take him to the hospital. Sometimes I did not have
money for bus fare so I did not go to the hospital”, “Taking the child to the
audiologist, ENT and special school was difficult without a car. Sometimes I would
run out of money. My relatives were not eager to help.”
In answering the question ‘Which individuals or organizations counseled you?’ Two
hundred and eight (208) parents out of 300 responded to this question. Forty six (46)
participants, (16%) indicated that churches counseled them. Comments from some of the
participants, “Our church, Roman Catholic, counseled me and gave me some money to
pay for the child’s treatment”, “Our pastor counseled me and prayed for the child.
Ladies from our church brought money for bus fare to take the child to hospital”, 112
participants, (40%) indicated hospitals. Some of the direct comments, “Doctor Powell
from the hospital counseled me and treated the child”, “Harare rehabilitation centre
and doctors there counseled me and advised me where to take the child”, 82
participants, (29%) indicated special schools. Comments from some of the participants
were as follows; “Special school counseled me and gave the child a hearing aid”, “One
special teacher counseled us and took the child to the boarding”, 130 participants,
(46%) indicated relatives and friends. Direct comments from participants, “My relatives
counseled us and did not want us to tell many people about our child”, “Relatives and
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friends counseled us and supported my family during the difficult times.” In answering
the question ‘Did the counseling you receive help you?’ 218 parents out of 300 responded
to this question. Two hundred and twelve (212) participants, (75%) indicated ‘yes’ and 49
(17%) indicated ‘no’. Comments from participants, “Yes, in a sense I had to accept him
as he is”, “Yes, it helped me to accept my child as he is but it was not easy”, “No, there
was nothing I got from the counselors”, “No, they did not tell us who caused it.” To the
follow up question ‘Why?’ 152 participants, (54%) indicated that it helped them to fully
accept their child. Comments to the why question are included in the responses above.
In answering the question ‘Do you think counseling helps parents to cope with their
children?’ 226 out of 300 parents responded to this question. One hundred and ninety six
(196) participants (70%) indicated ‘yes’ and 27 (10%) indicated ‘no’. To the follow up
question, which asked for a reason, 162 participants (54%) indicated that it helps parents to
cope with the child. Direct comments from participants, “Yes, knowing what your child
can and cannot do is important”, “Yes, it helped me to know that my child can lead a
normal life”, “No, because they do not give you money to buy hearing aids and pay
school fees”, “No, because they will not be there when you are with your child in your
home.”
In answering the question ‘What do you think should be done to make guidance and
counseling accessible to parents?’ 206 out of 300 parents responded to this question. A
number of suggestions were given but there were three outstanding ones. One hundred
(100) participants, (35%) suggested awareness campaigns through the media, posters in
public places and advertisements. Some direct comments from participants, “Must have
programmes on television, put posters in public places and advertise counseling
organizations over the radio and on television”, “Counseling organizations must come
in the open and publicize themselves”, 214 participants, (76%) suggested seminars and
workshops run by counseling organizations and special schools. Some comments from the
participants, “Hospitals, counseling organizations and special schools must run
workshops for parents”, “Advertise counseling organizations through the television,
seminars and workshops”, 106 participants, (38%) suggested parents counseling groups,
where parents meet, support one another sharing experiences, problems and possible
solutions. Some direct comments from the participants, “Parents support groups can be
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
formed and run in all major cities of the country”, “Parents workshops with qualified
counselors advising them about counseling services.” In answering the question ‘How
can guidance and counseling help you more as parents?’ 172 out of 300 parents responded
to this question. Again a number of suggestions were given, with three outstanding ones.
Forty six (46) participants, (16%) suggested counseling the child who is hearing impaired.
Direct comments from participants were as follows; “Our deaf children also need
counseling because some of them do not do what you ask them to do”, “Children with
hearing impairments also need counseling because some of them do not know what
they are able to do”, 86 participants, (30%) suggested guiding parents to cope with the
situation and to be able to integrate the child into the family. Direct comments from
participants, “Help parents cope and treat the child together with others, not making
him special”, “Frequent meetings to discuss problems and solutions on how parents
can cope and involve the child in family activities”, 70 participants, (25%) suggested
guiding parents to plan the future of their hearing impaired child. Direct comments from
participants were as follows, “We need proper guidance in order to plan the future of
these children so that they do not remain a burden”, “We should be made aware of
what these children can do such as sewing, cooking, art and typing so that we can plan
for their future.” The next part of this chapter deals with quantitative data analysis on the
questionnaire to service organizations.
4.8
QUANTITATIVE DATA ON THE QUESTIONNAIRE TO SERVICE
ORGANIZATIONS
TABLE 4.8.1
COUNSELING SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
N
Valid
Missing
Type of Service Organization
28
0
Have Counseled Parents of Children with Disability
28
0
Have Counseled Parents of deaf Children
28
0
Parent counseled
28
0
Have qualified counselors
28
0
No. of Uncertified Counselors
28
0
No. of Counselors with Certificate level
28
0
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
No. of Counselors with Diploma level
8
20
No. of Counselors with Degree level
1
27
28
0
No of Parents Counseled per Year
All 28 organizations responded to the first seven items and the last one.
Eight
organizations responded to the qualification of Diploma level and one responded to the
qualification of Degree level.
TABLE 4.8.2
TYPE OF SERVICE ORGANIZATION
Frequency
Valid
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Special School
5
17.9
17.9
17.9
Hospital
5
17.9
17.9
35.7
Church
15
53.6
53.6
89.3
3
10.7
10.7
100.0
28
100.0
100.0
Counseling
Organization
Total
Table 4.8.2 indicates the type and number of organizations that took part in the study.
Eight percent (18%) were special schools, 18% hospitals, 54% were churches and 11%
were registered counseling organizations.
TABLE 4.8.3
HAVE YOU COUNSELED PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES?
Frequency
Valid
Yes
28
Percent
100.0
Valid
Percent
100.0
Cumulative
Percent
100.0
All organizations indicated that they have counseled parents of children with disabilities.
TABLE 4.8.4
HAVE YOU COUNSELED PARENTS OF DEAF CHILDREN?
Frequency
Valid
Yes
28
Percent
Valid Percent
100.0
100.0
Cumulative
Percent
100.0
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
All organizations indicated that they have counseled parents of deaf children.
TABLE 4.8.5
PARENTS
COUNSELED
Frequency
Valid
Mother
Percent
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
9
32.1
32.1
32.1
Both
19
67.9
67.9
100.0
Total
28
100.0
100.0
Of the 28 organizations that responded to item 5, 32% of them counseled women only
and 68% counseled couples. It is interesting to note that no man has been counseled on
his own.
TABLE 4.8.6
HAVE YOU QUALIFIED COUNSELORS?
Frequency
Valid
Yes
28
Percent
100.0
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
100.0
100.0
Of the 28 organizations that responded to item 6, all 28 indicated that they have
qualified counselors.
TABLE 4.8.7
Valid
NO. OF UNCERTIFIED I
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Frequency
Percent
2
1
3.6
3.6
3.6
4
3
10.7
10.7
14.3
5
6
21.4
21.4
35.7
6
3
10.7
10.7
46.4
8
4
14.3
14.3
60.7
10
2
7.1
7.1
67.9
12
1
3.6
3.6
71.4
14
1
3.6
3.6
75.0
15
3
10.7
10.7
85.7
16
3
10.7
10.7
96.4
17
1
3.6
3.6
100.0
Total
28
100.0
100.0
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Of the 28 organizations that responded to item 7, on the number of uncertified counselors,
4% thus four separate organizations, each indicated that they had two, 12, 14 and 17
respectively. Another four groups of three separate organizations thus 11% indicated 4, 6,
15, and 16 respectively.
Four organizations, thus 14% indicated that they had eight
uncertified counselors, while six thus 21% indicated that they had five.
All the 28
organizations had a total of 109 uncertified counselors.
TABLE 4.8.8
Valid
NO. OF COUNSELORS WITH CERTIFICATE LEVEL
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Frequency
Percent
1
15
53.6
53.6
53.6
2
8
28.6
28.6
82.1
3
4
14.3
14.3
96.4
4
1
3.6
3.6
100.0
28
100.0
100.0
Total
Of the 28 organizations that responded to item 8, 54% had one counselor qualified at
certificate level, 29% had two, 14% had three and 4% had four.
TABLE 4.8.9
NO. OF COUNSELORS WITH DIPLOMA LEVEL
Valid
Percent
Cumulative
Percent
Frequency
Percent
1
6
21.4
75.0
75.0
2
1
3.6
12.5
87.5
3
1
3.6
12.5
100.0
Total
8
28.6
100.0
Missing System
20
71.4
Total
28
100.0
Valid
Of the 28 organizations, only eight responded to item 9. From those eight, 75% had one
counselor qualified at diploma level, 13% had two and another 13% had three. All the
eight organizations that responded had a total of six counselors qualified at diploma level.
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
TABLE 4.8.10
NO. OF COUNSELORS WITH DEGREE LEVEL
Valid
1
Missing
System
Frequency
Percent
Valid
Percent
1
3.6
100.0
27
96.4
28
100.0
Total
Cumulative
Percent
100.0
Only one organization out of 28 responded to this item. The organization indicated that
they had one counselor qualified at degree level.
FIGURE 4.8.11
NO. OF PARENTS COUNSELED PER YEAR
4%
18%
<5
29%
5 to 9
10 to 19
20 to 29
49%
Again all 28 organizations responded to the question on the number of parents they
counseled per year.
Eighteen percent (18%) of the organizations indicated that they
counsel less than five parents per year. Fifty percent (50%) indicated that they counsel five
to nine parents, 29% indicated that they counsel 10 to 19 parents while 4% indicated that
they counsel 20 to 29 parents per year.
Responses of organizations to six questions on the questionnaire to counseling service
organizations were analyzed item by item and the results are indicated in table 4.8.12.
TABLE 4.8.12
RESPONSES OF ORGANIZATIONS
SA
Count
Most parents counseled are able
to cope
5
A
11
U
D
SD
Total
3
7
2
28
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
SA
U
D
SD
Total
1
28
Counselors are well equipped
9
10
1
7
Not all counselors know
difference between counseling
and advice
2
17
4
5
28
Most parents counseled keep
coming back
5
16
1
6
28
Counselors are not comfortable to
deal with parents of children with
disabilities.
5
16
1
5
1
28
5
1
16
5
28
Qualified Counselors perform
better than unqualified counselors
Percent
A
1
Most parents counseled are able
to cope
17.9
39.3
10.7
25.0
7.1
100.0
Counselors are well equipped
32.1
35.7
3.6
25.0
3.6
100.0
Not all counselors know
difference between counseling
and advice
7.1
60.7
14.3
17.9
100.0
Most parents counseled keep
coming back
17.9
57.1
3.6
21.4
100.0
Counselors are not comfortable to
deal with parents of children with
disabilities.
17.9
57.1
3.6
17.9
3.6
100.0
Qualified Counselors perform
better than unqualified counselors
3.6
17.9
3.6
57.1
17.9
100.0
SUMMARY OF RESULTS
Item
Agree
Disagree
Undecided
Total
1
57.2
32.1
10.7
100,0
2
67.8
28.6
3.6
100.0
3
67.8
17.9
14.3
100.0
4
75.0
21.4
3.6
100.0
5
75.0
21.5
3.6
100.0
6
21.5
75.0
3.6
100.0
On item 1: Most parents counseled are able to cope with their children, 16 organizations
(57%) agreed with the statement and nine participants (32%) disagreed while three
participants (11%) were undecided. On item 2: Counselors in our organization are well
equipped, 19 participants (68%) agreed, while eight (29%) disagreed and one (4%) was
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undecided. On item 3: Not all counselors know the difference between counseling and
advice, 19 participants (68%) agreed with the statement, five (18%) disagreed and four
(14%) were undecided. On item 4: Most parents who were counseled kept on coming back
for more help, 21 participants (75%) agreed with the statement, six (21%) disagreed and
one (4%) was undecided. On item 5: Counselors are not comfortable to work with parents
of children with disabilities, 21 (75%) agreed, while six (22%) disagreed and one (4%) was
undecided. On item 6: Qualified counselors perform better than unqualified counselors, six
participants (21%) agreed with the statement, while 21 (75%) disagreed and one (4%) was
undecided. The next part of the study looks at the qualitative analysis on the open-ended
questionnaire to service organizations.
4.9
QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS ON THE OPEN-ENDED QUESTIONNAIRE
TO SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
All 28 organizations responded to the open-ended questionnaire.
Out of the 28, 26
responded to item 13, 28 responded to item 14, 19 responded to item 15 and 24 responded
to item 16.
The analysis of these results was performed in a similar way to the qualitative analysis
from the data that was obtained from the parent participants in the study. It will be
presented in a similar fashion.
TABLE 4.9.1
WHAT ORGANIZATIONS CONSIDERED BEING THE MAJOR PROBLEMS OF
PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
Accepting the child
24
86%
Communication
28
100%
Twenty six (26) organizations responded to item 13, the results were as indicated. Eighty
six percent (86%) considered accepting the child as one of parents’ major problems while
100% considered communication as one of the major problems.
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TABLE 4.9.2 WHAT
ORGANIZATIONS THOUGHT WOULD BE THE MOST EFFECTIVE WAY
OF HELPING PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
Counseling
23
82%
Prayer
15
54%
Financial assistance
25
89%
Twenty eight (28) organizations responded to item 14 and the results were as indicated.
86% considered counseling to be one of the most effective ways of helping parents of
children with hearing impairments, 54% suggested prayer as one of the most effective ways
of helping the parents in question and 89% considered financial assistance as one of the
most effective ways of helping parents.
TABLE 4.9.3
WHETHER PARENTS WHO WERE COUNSELED BY ORGANIZATIONS WERE
ABLE TO COPE WITH THEIR CHILDREN OR NOT
Yes
12
43%
Were able to cope with the child
10
38%
No
9
32%
Were not able to cope with the child
4
14%
Nineteen (19) organizations responded to item 15, and the results were as indicated. Forty
three percent (43%) indicated that they received counseling, while 38% of those counseled
confirmed that they were able to cope with their children. Thirty two percent (32%)
indicated that they were not counseled and out of these and 14% indicated that they could
not cope with their children.
TABLE 4.9.4
COMMON
PROBLEMS OFTEN PRESENTED BY PARENTS OF CHILDREN
WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
Community negative attitude towards the child
22
79%
Failing to cope with the child
18
64%
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Twenty four (24) organizations responded to item 16, and the results were as indicated.
Seventy nine percent (79%) of the participants indicated community negative attitude
towards the child as one of the common problems often presented by parents of children
with hearing impairments while 64% indicated failing to cope with the children as one of
the common problems presented by the parents in question.
4.10
SYNOPSIS ON THE RESULTS FROM THE SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
As pointed out by McLeod (1996:312) counseling organizations play an integral part in
counseling parents of children with disabilities.
Therefore their contributions are of
paramount importance if parents are to receive a quality counseling service. Twenty eight
(28) organizations responded to the open-ended questionnaire that had four items.
In answering the question ‘What do you consider to be the major problem of parents of
children with hearing impairments?’ 26 organizations out of 28 responded to this question.
Twenty four (24) organizations 86% indicated accepting the child as one of the major
problems. Directs comments were as follows, “What we have found here is that most
parents find it difficult to accept the child and the situation as a whole”, “Parents feel
that having a child who has a hearing impairment means there is something
inadequate in them.” Twenty eight (28) participants, (100%) indicated communication as
a major problem. Some of the comments from participating organizations were, “Parents
get frustrated when they fail to communicate with their own children”, “It is a
devastating experience for parents and the hearing siblings when they see their child,
or brother or sister fail to put across his/her demands or requirements.”
In answering the question ‘What do you think would be the most effective way of helping
parents of children with a hearing impairment?’ all the 28 organizations responded to this
question. Twenty three (23) participants (82%) indicated counseling. Comments were as
follows; “Counseling should be the first thing before anything else”, “Parents in such
a situation need counseling before the family break apart”, 15 participants (54%)
indicated prayer.
Comments given were, “There is nothing impossible with God
therefore prayer is the answer to these parents’ problems”, “Through prayer God can
heal their children if he forgives them.” Twenty five (25) participants (89%) indicated
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
financial assistance. Direct comments were, “These parents need financial assistance to
pay for medical bills, school fees and transport”, “Having a child who is disabled in a
family is like a curse because it is financially draining and therefore these parents
need money to have the child tested and treated.”
In answering the question ‘Were the parents counseled by your organization able to cope
with their children?’ 19 out of 28 organizations responded to this question. Twelve (12)
participants (43%) indicated ‘yes’ and 10 (38%) of these gave the reason that they were
able to cope. Their actual comments were, “Yes, many of the parents were so happy
because they understood their children’s problems better”, “Yes, some of them came
back to register their feelings of joy and to thank us.” Nine (9) participants (32%)
indicated ‘no’ and four (14%) of these gave the reason that they were not able to cope.
Their actual comments were, “It is not easy to counsel parents of children with
disabilities when you do not know much about what should be done with the child”,
“It is frustrating to see how these parents suffer, no matter what you tell them the
problems remain as long as the child is in the family.”
In answering the question ‘What common problems have parents of children with hearing
impairments often presented?’ 24 out of 28 organizations responded to this question. Two
outstanding problems were indicated.
Twenty two (22) participants (79%) indicated
negative attitude from the community. Direct comments were, “Parents always complain
about their neighbours, relatives and members of the community who withdraw their
children from playing with the child with hearing impairments”, “Getting into a shop
or bus with the child draws everyone’s attention and they all give you the way.”
Eighteen (18) participants (64%) indicated failing to cope with the child as one of the
problems. Actual comments from the counseling organizations were, “Sometimes you
hear parents say: can’t you find me a boarding school where I can put him, since they
know how to communicate with him”, “I have stopped working and I have to be home
all the time to make sure that he is safe.” A number of challenging comments that cannot
be accommodated here have been expressed, the ones given here are only a few selected
ones.
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4.11
SUMMARY OF THE CHAPTER
In this chapter results concerning the demographic information on parents and children
have been presented and analyzed. Sources of counseling, parents’ experiences, views and
perceptions on counseling have been looked at. Contributions of counseling organizations
in terms of counseling parents of children with hearing impairment, qualifications of their
employees and their experiences in dealing with parents of children with disabilities have
been tapped into. Although results have been presented and analyzed, there is need to
discuss all the results in detail in order to make them more meaningful. Chapter 5 gives a
detailed discussion of the results and their implications for parents of children with hearing
impairments and their children. In the next chapter I will discuss the research findings in
relation to the existing body of knowledge.
---oOo---
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5
5.1
DISCUSSION OF RESULTS
INTRODUCTION
In this chapter I will discuss the results of the research findings in relation to the ways
parents of children with hearing impairments accessed counseling in Zimbabwe during the
period 1999 to 2000. I will start with a discussion of the biographical details of the
participants in the study in order to frame the results that follow it. The difficulties that
parents experienced in raising their children with hearing impairments, that further
motivated some of them to seek counseling services will be looked into. Details of where
parents obtained counseling, their perceptions of the counseling they received and the
relationship between counseling and accepting and coping with their children with hearing
impairments are also discussed. Quantitative results will be discussed first, followed by
qualitative results, all obtained from data generated from parents of children with hearing
impairments. Results from counseling organizations, both of quantitative and qualitative
data will also be discussed. All results reveal a number of important issues pertaining to
the counseling of parents of children with hearing impairments and the accessibility of
counseling services.
5.2
GENDERS OF PARTICIPANTS IN THE STUDY
Results indicate that out of 300 participants who responded to the item on gender, 120
(40%) were men, 150 (50%) were women and 30 (10%) were couples. The high number of
participants who were fathers is encouraging, because fathers are often under-represented in
studies on the parents of children with disabilities. The high percentage can probably be
explained by the fact that the data was gathered during enrolment days at schools, when
fathers are often present. A number of studies (Moores, 1987:257, Meadow, 1980:384,
Kauffman, 1992:169 and Heward & Orlansky, 1988:643), indicate that fathers of children
with disabilities show less interest in and commitment to their children than their
counterparts with non-disabled children. However, a study by Hallahan and Kauffman
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(1994:498) with fathers and mothers of children with disabilities indicated that while
mothers are more involved than fathers, there is a gradual increase in the number of men
who are taking an active role in the life of a child with disabilities. As pointed out by Dale
(1984:69) this could be caused by the general wide spread knowledge on disability and its
causes that is gained through the media, literature and televised educational programmes.
The number of father-participants in this study is also indicative of this trend.
5.3
GENDER OF PARTICIPANTS’ CHILDREN
Out of 300 parents who responded to the item on gender of children, 180 (60%) of the
parents’ children were boys and 120 (40%) of the parents’ children were girls. Only one
parent (0.3%) had a boy and a girl but this incidence became insignificantly small as the
larger pool of the data was analyzed. As indicated in figure 4.3.1.2, this biographical detail
confirms that of other literature concurring the prevalence of hearing disabilities in
children.
Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1995:271) and Moores and Meadow
(1990:347), precisely point out that deafness is more prevalent in boys than in girls,
although the difference is not always significant. The fact that one parent had a boy and a
girl with a hearing impairment, may imply that the causes were hereditary.
5.4
NATURE OF HEARING LOSS
Out of 300 parents who responded to the question of whether their children were born deaf
or became deaf later, 55% of the parents indicated that their children were born deaf while
41% indicated that their children became deaf later while 4% indicated that they did not
know whether their children were born deaf or they became deaf later. The results of a
study by Moores and Meadow (1990:123) as indicated in figure 4.3.1.3 show a high
correlation with the findings of this study. A small inconsistency appears in parents’
responses to the same questions asked the other way. For example the statement “My child
was born deaf” 55% indicated that they agreed with the statement. When the opposite
statement was given, “My child became deaf later”, 53% of the parents indicated “no”
instead of 55%. As pointed out earlier on in figure 4.3.1.4, the implication may be that
some parents are not quite sure whether the child was born deaf or became deaf later,
especially if the child’s hearing impairment was discovered at a very late stage. Hunt and
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Marshall (1994:364) assert that it is difficult to be certain whether the child was born deaf
or became deaf later, if the screening system is not implemented at birth or is not effective.
5.5
AGES OF PARTICIPANTS’ CHILDREN
Of the 300 parents who responded to the question on children’s ages, 24% indicated that
they had children between the ages of five and eight years, 49.3% indicated that they had
children between the ages of nine and 13 years, 25.7% indicated that they had children
between the ages of 14 and 18 years, while 1% indicated that they had children between
nine and 13 years and also other children between the ages of 14 and 18 years. The high
percentage of children in the age groups nine to 13 and 14 to 18 is likely to be caused by
late discovery of hearing impairment. Heward and Orlansky (1988:582) in their study
carried out in America specify that late identification of hearing impairment delays correct
placement and causes loss of time on the part of the child. Children whose hearing
impairments is discovered late lose out on early intervention programmes that help the
formation of speech patterns, listening skills, speech and lip reading as well as correct
concept formation (Martin & Clark, 1996:192 and McCormick, 1988:270).
It is
encouraging to note that 24% of the parents indicated that their children were between five
and eight years, this being the most appropriate age for speech development and auditory
training (Webster, 1986:153).
5.6
PARTICIPANTS WHO RECEIVED AND THOSE WHO DID NOT
RECEIVE COUNSELING
Out of 300 participants who responded to whether they received counseling or not, 270
(90%) indicated that they received counseling while 30 (10%) indicated that they did not
receive counseling. As pointed out earlier on by Howard (1992:37) in figure 4.3.2.2,
people obtain counseling from different sources: from professionals, non-professionals,
members of the extended family, individuals and sometimes from relatives.
Howe
(1993:87) and Howard (2000:94) assert that some counseling sessions are unstructured,
taking place in natural conversation where the counselor may not say anything but just
listens attentively and empathizes with the client as he/she relates his/her story. Ivey and
Ivey (1993:128) asserts that some clients may not interpret this as counseling due to their
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expectations of what should come out of a counseling session. These factors may explain
why 10% of the parents perceived that they did not receive counseling. It is, of course,
possible that they did indeed receive no counseling.
5.7
PARTICIPANTS’ SOURCES OF COUNSELING
Participants in this study reported that they obtained counseling from different sources.
Out of 270 participants who received counseling, 63% indicated that they received
counseling from special schools, 40% from registered counseling organizations, 45% from
churches, 47% from hospitals, 30% from relatives, 52% from individuals and 1% from
friends. In developing countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa (Roffey, 2001:48 and
Baine, 1988:56) parents of children with disabilities mainly rely on teachers of special
education for professional counseling and expert advice. This is so because these are the
professionals they come to know and work with, as they seek to enroll their child in a
school. This is endorsed by Werner (1987:204) when he pointed out that parents and the
community regard special schools as their savior regarding children with disabilities. To
them, special schools have everything for both children with disabilities and their parents.
According to Werner, parents’ assumptions are that in special schools, all their needs are
met, problems solved and the children are fully catered for. However, in reality, special
schools have a lot of gaps that other professionals such as psychologists, speech therapists,
audiologists and social workers must fill in order for the school to provide a comprehensive
service.
Most special schools in developing countries cannot afford to employ these
professionals full time in schools, though some have them on part-time basis (Meese,
2001:15).
The other factor is that developing countries have a shortage of qualified
personnel in all the above-mentioned professions (UNESCO, 2001:2).
Considering
Werner, Roffey and Baine’s explanations, it would seem logical to assume that most
participants were counseled in special schools simply because they (special schools) were a
more readily available source, possibly with a free service. Studies carried out by Gartner,
Lipsky and Turnbull (1991:261) indicate that in developed countries, where resources,
qualified personnel and registered counseling organizations are readily available, by the
time parents of children with hearing impairments visit special schools, most of them
would have already received counseling and/or advice from different professionals and/or
organizations.
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The fact that only 40% of the participants received counseling from registered counseling
organizations may be due to the fact that not many parents were aware of counseling
organizations, as indicated in figures 4.3.8.3 and 4.3.8.13. Although there is a slightly
higher percentage of participants who were aware of counseling organizations (53.9%), it is
possible that means of transport, traveling expenses and financial constraints could have
prevented them from visiting the counseling organizations all of which are situated in
towns.
These factors are apparent in table 4.6.2 where participants cited lack of
transportation and financial constraints as some of the difficulties they faced in taking
children to special schools and hospitals. Lea and Clarke (1991:159) carried out a study
and found that 11 families that had requested help from health professionals failed to attend
the appointments.
Possible reasons given were that they might have failed due to
difficulties traveling to specialized centres, lack of funds, lack of knowledge of what the
services offered and where the services could be located, as well as fear of stigmatization.
It is interesting to note that 45% of the participants received counseling from churches.
Most studies in special education, particularly in developing countries, target children,
teachers and to a lesser extent parents (Kisanji, 1992:263; Makoni, 1996:8; Baine, 1988:49
and United Nations, 1997:1). Most of these studies are conducted in a school and/or home
environment, but this study included churches, and church environments. In his research
article, ‘Spiritual issues in counseling’ Fukuyama (1997:237), indicates that there are a
number of studies in general spiritual counseling that involve families, teachers and
students, but a lot more is still to be done in the area of special education. Fukuyama
(1997:241) points out that churches play an important role in counseling as long as
counselors are well trained and offer spiritual support. It was clear from the literature
review in a study carried out by Howe (1996:127) that church counselors who continuously
gave their clients moral, social and physical support achieved better counseling results than
other counselors who quickly disengaged. According to the above studies there seems to
be some indication that churches are an effective source of counseling that could be
encouraged to continue to play a major role in counseling parents of children with
disabilities.
Only 47% of the participants indicated that they received counseling from hospitals. If the
screening procedure were to be effective from birth, this figure would have been much
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higher. McCormick (1988:372) and Tucker and Nolan (1984:2) declare that work in
guidance and counseling should be co-ordinated by educational audiologists. In the United
Kingdom one of the major roles of audiologists is to train the health visitors who carry out
the initial screening procedures in hospitals and other health related centres. Part of this
training involves counseling parents since audiologists and health visitors are the first to
discover hearing impairment in children. They are therefore the ones called upon to break
the news to the parents. Audiologists, nurses and health visitors who work in audiological
centres and clinics have a counseling background and many parents get their initial
counseling soon after the child is confirmed to be having a hearing impairment (Martin &
Clark, 1996:78). In Zimbabwe there is a shortage of qualified audiologists and counselors
with the result that only isolated cases of hearing impairment are discovered at an early
stage. Such children are found merely by chance. The percentage of parents counseled in
hospitals has only started increasing from 1999 due to rehabilitation units set up in
hospitals. There are serviced by trained specialist teachers for the hearing impaired. A
number of nurses are also being trained in counseling by a non-governmental counseling
organization that has qualified counselors. Parents in rural areas may not have sufficient
money to travel to big hospitals where specialists are stationed. All these factors contribute
to the low percentage of parents counseled in hospitals.
Participants who indicated that they received counseling from relatives amount to 91 out of
300 (30%). Those who indicated counseling by individuals constitute 157 out of 300
(52%) while those who indicated that they were counseled by friends, only constitute four
out of 300 (1%). According to the literature, in the African traditional counseling, Shumba
(1995:37), Sue and Sue (1990:327) and Baine (1988:84) in one way or another, all point
out that relatives and members of the extended family were considered as counselors of a
family.
There is also a growing trend of families moving away from the traditional
extended family to the single-parent family and/or the modern nuclear family (Blocher,
2000:247). This is encouraged by the limited facilities in towns that do not allow for big
families. A high percentage of the participants in this study, who indicated that they
received counseling from individuals, might have obtained it from professionals, or
counselors in their individual capacities or church members or family doctors or any other
individuals. Throughout the literature, professional counselors who operate as individuals
do offer counseling to many who approach them either for payment or for free (Howard,
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1996, 28; Howe, 1996:369 and Ivey, 1980:14). It is interesting to note that friends do not
seem to be the best people to approach for counseling. It is possible that they are so close
to the family with a child with hearing impairment that they become part of the family that
needs counseling. As pointed out by Peltier and Vale (1986:315) a family with a child with
disabilities will need counseling together with friends and members of the extended family
in order for them to offer appropriate moral and emotional support to one another.
5.8
THE NEED FOR COUNSELING AND ITS EFFECT ON PARENTS
ACCEPTING AND COPING WITH THEIR CHILDREN WHO HAVE
HEARING IMPAIRMENTS
Out of 300 participants that responded to the statement, “Parents of children with hearing
impairment do not need counseling”, 93% disagreed with the statement, 6% agreed and 1%
were undecided. In response the opposite question, “Counseling is a must for parents of
children with hearing impairments”, out of 260 participants who responded, 87% agreed
with the statement, 7% disagreed and 5% were undecided. The high percentages are a clear
indication that counseling is regarded as necessary for parents of children with hearing
impairment. These results are confirmed in the literature. A study by Thomas (1989:110)
examined the social and emotional adjustment of 84 families of children with hearing
impairments. His study indicates that parents who had received counseling developed
positive attitudes towards their children and that these further produced emotional and
social stability in both children and parents, with a higher correlation in older children. The
role of counseling cannot be underestimated. Gartner, et al. (1991:36) in their article
“Changing views of family participation”, indicate the needs of parents for counseling by
presenting direct quotations from the data: “As families of children with hearing
impairments, we require guidance and counseling and support, preferably from families
that have gone through a similar experience and have successfully integrated into the
community.” This is further complemented by Harry (1997:153) when he pointed out that
the process of going through anger, guilt, shock and denial requires guidance and
counseling to help parents and siblings work through their emotions in such a way that they
as a family accept the child.
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Analyzed data on participants accepting the child with hearing impairments indicate that
counseling in general helped parents to accept their children with hearing impairments.
Out of 294 participants who responded to the statement, “Counseling does not help parents
accept the idea of having a hearing impaired child in the family”, 16% agreed with the
statement, 79% disagreed and 5% were undecided. In response to the direct opposite
statement, “Without counseling one cannot fully accept having a child with a hearing
impairment in the family”, out of 296 participants who responded, 76% agreed with the
statement, 20% disagreed and 4% were undecided. Again this clearly confirms what is in
the literature. Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1995:398) assert that parents of children
with hearing impairments gradually accept their child as part of the family, after a lot of
consultations and counseling sessions. However, they point out that not only is the study of
families of individuals with disabilities difficult because of the complexity of the
interactions that take place, but it is further complicated by the fact that studies rely so
much on subjective impressions. One is then dealing with parents’ feelings towards the
child, and the siblings and parents’ feelings towards the society’s reactions towards the
child. Moores (1996:87) points out that many parents accept their children with hearing
impairments after receiving counseling and interacting with other parents who went
through a similar situation. Moores and Meadow (1990:140) indicate that parent support
groups are more powerful in helping parents of children with hearing impairments accept
their children than counselors who have never had children with disabilities.
With regard to parents coping with their children after counseling, in response to the
statement, “The counseling we received did not help us to cope with the child at all”. Out
of 293 participants, 22% agreed with the statement, 72% disagreed and 6% were undecided.
The response to its direct opposite, “Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is
hearing impaired”. Out of 296 participants who responded to this statement, 85% agreed,
10% disagreed and 5% were undecided. There was a clear indication that parents of
children with hearing impairments were more able to cope with their children after
receiving counseling. This result concurs with similar results in the literature. A study by
Kirk, Gallagher and Anastasiow (1997:403) indicates that while parents go through
difficult times in which they experience, fear, shock, guilt, frustration and grief, eventually
with the help of professionals in the field of hearing impairment and counselors, the whole
picture normally changes into loving, accepting and coping with the child. In their study
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with 24 families that each had a child with a hearing impairment and had received
counseling, Meese (2001:93) interviewed parents and siblings to find out if they had
accepted and were able to cope with the child. All families indicated that they loved their
children and were coping although it was not always easy. One family said, “It is like the
world has rejected you, but with counseling and numerous consultations it is rewarding at
the end”. Hunt and Marshall (1994:358) assert that even after counseling, parents who
have only one child, their first born, who happens to be hearing impaired, take longer to
accept and to cope with the children. Such parents are shattered, they do not understand
why it happened to them, and in some instances they might not even want to try having
another child.
5.9
UNDERSTANDING COUNSELING, THE NEEDS OF THE CHILD,
TAKING RESPONSIBILITY AND PLANNING THE FUTURE OF THE
CHILD
In this study counseling was considered in all its different forms, either one to one between
the counselor and the counselee or in-group form, sometimes with more than one
counselor. We have also looked at counsel and guidance in the African culture where the
elderly counsel the young. Participants understood counseling in different ways and all
these were considered. The data collected on the difference between receiving counseling
and receiving advice indicate that most participants are aware of the differences but at the
same time subscribe to the view that in counseling there is also advice giving. Data
collected from the statement, “Counseling is totally different from advice”, yielded the
following results; out of 298 participants who responded to this statement, 52% agreed with
it, 43% disagreed and 5% were undecided. In response to the direct opposite statement, “It
is difficult to separate counseling from advice”, 42% of the participants agreed with the
statement, 46% disagreed and 11% were undecided. It is clear that most participants were
aware of the relationship between the two. Different counselors apply different counseling
techniques. Howard (2000:43), Ivey and Ivey (1993:174) and Nystul (1999:328) all point
out that counselors may use a variety of skills depending on the nature and problems of the
client.
Some clients do well with directive methods while others succeed with non-
directive methods. On understanding the needs of the child, data collected indicate that
over 80% of the participants agreed that counseling helped them to understand the child
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and his/her needs. This result confirms the findings in a study by Hallahan and Kauffman
(1994:495) that indicate that after three to four counseling sessions, parents gained
confidence in dealing with their children’s needs and demands. Parents also made an effort
to read and understand more about hearing impairment and the challenges faced by parents
of children with hearing impairments. Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1995:134) point
out that most parents prefer to get advice from, and share information with parents who
have children with hearing impairments and have managed to integrate them into their
families. Hunt and Marshall (1994:375) assert that 76% of the parents they interviewed
indicated that through counseling, parents were encouraged and challenged to acquire more
information on the effects of hearing impairment on social and emotional development.
This helped them to value child/child interaction and the benefits their children derive from
playing with other children in the community.
Turnbull and Turnbull (1990:189) emphasized the importance of stressing to parents the
value of child/child interaction and its benefits. Most parents express feelings of shock,
anger, guilt, denial fear, anxiety and inadequacy about their child’s hearing impairment.
According to Kirk, Gallagher and Anastasiow (1997:380) parents do take full responsibility
of their own children and counseling usually supports this process. In this study results
indicate that over 70% of the parents were of the opinion that their children are their
responsibility whether the government helps them or not in terms of their child’s hearing
impairment. Moores (1987:97) contend that through the use of guidance and counseling
parents may shift from one extreme (denial) to the other end providing love and protection.
In giving love and protection parents take full responsibility for their children.
Throughout the literature, (Edgar, 1987:559, Meadows, 1980:75, Neel, et al., 1988:211,
and Hossie, Patterson & Hollingworth, 1989:174) indicate that there is a growing concern
in the education of children with disabilities, about poor transition from primary to
secondary education, from secondary to tertiary institutions and then in securing
employment. There is a problem in either the education system or the planning by parents
and/or educational authorities. Edgar (1987:557) points out that children with disabilities
will continue to depend on their families until a system that sets them free is put in place.
A system that will enable them to be employable and lead an independent life. In the first
chapter of this study, the statement of the problem clearly indicates that parents continue to
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come back to the special schools where their children learnt for advice on what to do with
the children. Hunt and Marshall (1994:362) confirm that planning the future of students
with disabilities remains an area of concern.
In this study, parents acknowledge that it is not easy to plan the future of children with
hearing impairments. The problem may be compounded by education systems the world
over, particularly in developing countries where unemployment figures are high
(Backenroth, 2001:25).
People with disabilities seem to struggle more to secure
employment and other basic necessities of life such as accommodation (Heward &
Orlansky (1988:246). While equal opportunities as advocated by Public Law (PL92-142)
in the United States of America, the Education of All Handicapped Children Act (1975)
(USA) and the Individuals with Disability Education Act (IDEA, (1986) also in the United
States of America, have been accepted world-wide, the reality of the job market is that
people with disabilities are still marginalized (Colledge, 2002:78). This is extensively
supported by results of the multi-site study carried out by the United Nations (1997:5-7) in
Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Bangladesh.
The results of this study indicate that parents are not confident in planning the future of
their children with hearing impairments, probably due to the prevailing unfavorable
conditions the world over, regarding the employment of people with disabilities. It is
important to review secondary and tertiary education programmes for individuals/students
with disabilities so that they become more relevant and realistic to what people with
disabilities can do and what industry demands. Blackorby and Wagner (1996:405), in their
longitudinal study with post secondary school youth with disabilities, indicate that the
majority of students with disabilities do not complete their education, they either drop out
of school in secondary education or when doing college work. The study also shows that
most of them are not employed and that the few who get jobs are poorly paid.
5.10
CORRELATION OF RESULTS BY GENDER OF PARENTS
In the comparison of counseling, (special schools, counseling organizations, churches,
hospitals, relatives, individuals and friends), in relation to the gender of participants, Chisquared results indicate that about the same proportion of males and females use special
schools for counseling.
Relatively more male parents use counseling organizations,
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churches, and hospitals compared to female parents. Fewer male parents turn to relatives,
individuals and friends compared to female parents. It is interesting to note that when I
considered only five sources of counseling: counseling organizations, churches, hospitals,
relatives and individuals, as sources used by both men and women, the main differences
appear to be in use of counseling organizations, hospitals and individuals. In this analysis,
more males then use hospitals than females while more females use counseling
organizations and turn to individuals than males (respectively). When participants were
compared in relation to only four sources of counseling, churches, hospitals, relatives and
individuals, more males turn to relatives while relatively more females turn to hospitals.
Proportions turning to churches and individuals do not appear to differ by much. There is
an indication that the number of counseling sources affects both male and female choices
and these choices change when certain sources are taken away.
In trying to establish the position of not being able to cope with the child with hearing
impairment, after receiving counseling, males agreed that even after receiving counseling,
they could not cope compared to females who relatively tend to disagree.
The data
established that there was no relationship between male and female participant responses in
terms of being able to and not being able to cope with regard to the particular gender or the
age of their children after receiving counseling.
However, one of the paradoxes in
traditional cultures is the fact that generally men talk about the importance of counseling,
family cohesion and the nurturance of children while women are largely left unassisted to
do something about it (Blocher, 2000:254). The tendency to blame mothers for the social
and psychological problems of children is a well documented and readily apparent
phenomenon in popular perceptions, public policy pronouncements, and even in the social
scientific literature (Phares, 1992:658). It is befitting that men join hands with their wives
or partners in parenting their children with disabilities. Studies indicate that fathers and
mothers provide the same warmth and love to children if they give their time (Neukrug,
1999:66). The next part of this study deals with questionnaire response consistency.
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5.11
QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSE CONSISTENCY
In this section of the study I will indicate the strength of the instrument in terms of validity
and reliability. The measure for consistency was administered mainly to check the validity
and reliability of the instrument. Hill, Thompson and Williams (1997:537) point out that
the validity and reliability of the instrument used, as well as the environment in which the
study is conducted determine the quality of data collected. In this study, participants
constantly acknowledged the value of counseling in both questionnaire responses and
interview notes, particularly for parents of children with hearing impairments. On 22 out of
26 items, participants’ responses were very consistent. Items 8 versus 19 and 9 versus 14
had degrees of consistency above 70%. Items 10 versus 20, 12 versus 24, 16 versus 23 and
21 versus 25 have degrees of consistency from 80% to 88.7% respectively. Items 1 versus
11 and 6 versus 18 were very consistent with 93% degree of consistency. These items can
be said to be very reliable. It may mean that they were clear and measured what they
purported to measure. It may also be a clear indication that response and positional bias
were successfully controlled and hence objectivity and internal validity were achieved.
This further enhances the reliability of the research results. Babbie and Mouton (2001:27)
point out that validity and reliability of a research study is largely dependent on the method
and instrument used to collect data. The levels of consistency in the instrument in this
study are a clear indication that the instrument measured what it was intended to measure
and that it turned out to be reliable. It would therefore stand to reason that the data
collected in this study is reliable and valid, which contributes towards the credibility of the
study. Inconsistency was only registered on four items: items 2 versus 26 and 7 versus 15.
These items could have been poorly phrased, or not clear or specific. However, as a whole
the instrument used in this study produced highly consistent responses.
5.12
QUALITATIVE RESULTS OF PARENTS
Results of qualitative data are discussed in the sequence in which they are presented in
chapter 4, item 4.6.2. In these results the first item contains the participants’ contributions
towards the five major difficulties parents experienced in raising their child with hearing
impairments. One hundred and eighty two (182) parents responded to this item. Of the
five difficulties given, communication is at the top of the list. One hundred and forty six
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(146) parents (52%) indicated that communication was a big problem.
According to
Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1995:147), Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:322) and Hunt
and Marshall (1994:361) both parents and children get frustrated when they fail to engage
in a meaningful conversation for basic needs and requirements.
As social beings,
communication is one of our most important means of survival. Without it, the potential of
an individual in communicating needs and wants is severely restricted, and yet the ability to
carry out a conversation with another person is one of the unique characteristics of human
beings. Communication is important to every one to such an extent that lack of it carries
social penalties that may give birth to emotional instability.
communication cannot be over-estimated.
Therefore the power of
The parents of children with hearing
impairments in this study placed it at the top of the list of the problems they faced.
The second item in terms of the difficulties parents faced was financial constraints. Out of
182 participants who responded, 130 participants (46%) indicated that they did not have
enough money to pay for school fees and to buy hearing aids. A good number of these
parents are based in rural, semi-urban and low-income areas and they send their children to
the only special schools for children with hearing impairments. The schools uniforms,
books and stationery are expensive.
Parents from rural areas depend entirely on
subsistence farming. The inconsistencies of earning a living in this way makes it very
difficult for such parents to be able to pay school fees and also buy hearing aids.
Hearing aids are very expensive, bearing in mind that they are imported mainly from
Europe. A study by Gelfand, Jenson and Drew (1988:52) indicates that 51% of all parents
of children with hearing impairments, from a low socio-economic status had difficulties in
obtaining sufficient money for transport, medical treatment and sometimes hearing aids.
They also found that children from poverty-stricken families were more likely to be sent for
special education before they were ready for school. In this study 122 (43%) of the
participants out of 182, indicated that teaching the child basic living skills was also difficult
for them. Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:495), Moores (1996:85), Moores and Meadow
(1990:117) and Kauffman (1992:304) all endorse the opinion that parents of children with
hearing impairments find the first two years particularly difficult to cope with their
children. This may be due to the lack of skills necessary to teach the child basic living
skills such as toilet, dressing, eating and sleeping habits.
The community’s negative
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attitudes towards the child were one of the aspects mentioned. Sixty eight (68) out of 182
parents, (24%) stated that the community showed a negative attitude towards the child with
hearing impairments. Some of the participants indicated that negative attitudes were shown
in different ways, such as withdrawing their children from interacting with a child with
hearing impairments, looking at the child with suspicion and talking ill about the situation.
Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1995:401) assert that parents of children with hearing
impairments and other disabilities, may suffer from an inferiority complex, feelings of
inadequacy and guilty conscience as a result of the way in which society views them in
relation to their child with hearing impairments. A study by Webster (1986:78) suggests
that while society generally accepts the idea of living together with people with disabilities,
when it came to effective interaction, very few indicated a willingness to share
accommodation and/or any other facilities.
The other difficulty that was cited by
participants was transporting the child to school and to the hospital. Forty two (42) people
(15%) out of 182 people who responded to this item, indicated serious transport problems.
This is a common problem in developing countries where the transport system is poor and
unreliable (Baine, 1988:23). In some places the roads are not rehabilitated, meaning that no
buses service the areas. As a result parents walk long distances to get to bus stops or they
simply give up and stay with the child at home.
On sources of counseling, out of 208 participants who responded, 25 (12%) received
counseling from churches, 62 (30%) from hospitals, 46 (22%) from special schools and 75
(36%) from relatives and friends. According to Salkind (2000:98) participants in research
studies are generally not keen to write long explanatory notes because it is both taxing and
time consuming. This could be the reason why only 208 participants responded to this
item. It may also be because this aspect was already covered in the previous section of the
questionnaire. A comparison of quantitative and qualitative results of participants’ sources
of counseling, indicate some differences in percentages. Quantitative data were generated
from 300 participants while qualitative data were generated from 208 participants who
responded.
Quantitative results (figure 4.3.2.2) indicate that 63% of the participants
received counseling from special schools while results from qualitative data (table 4.6.3),
indicate that 22% received counseling from special schools. Results from quantitative and
qualitative respectively: churches 40% versus 12%, hospitals 47% versus 30%, relatives
and friends 31% versus 36%. It would be difficult to account for these differences due to
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the fact that some of the participants received counseling from more than one source.
There is no guarantee that the same participants responded all the time. Participants could
have noticed that they had covered the same items in the first questionnaire and therefore
did not feel like writing them in an elaborate format. It might also be that most of the
participants who did not respond to the qualitative questionnaire received counseling from
one or two particular sources, which could also have affected the percentages.
In his research study, Howard (2000:126) indicates that parents of children with disabilities
who were counseled by church counselors benefited more than parents who were counseled
by secular counselors.
Church counselors followed their clients, prayed with them,
supported them morally, physically and spiritually. Secular counselors left their clients
when they felt they could cope but seldom followed their progress timeously.
It is
therefore important for counselors to keep the line of communication open even after
disengaging. In this study 47% of the participants received counseling from hospitals. Yet
most parents go to the hospitals for initial diagnosis and treatment. Parents who visit
hospitals are also referred to the Children’s Rehabilitation Unit (CRU) where they are
counseled and referred to ENT’s and/or special school for further help. In this study 22%
received counseling from special schools. These are also strategic institutions for parents
to receive counseling but their priority is preferably to find a place for their child in the
school. Counseling, in these instances, can only occur when the child has been offered a
place. Very few parents would visit special schools primarily for counseling. However, it
is likely that parents of almost all children enrolled in special schools have an opportunity
to receive counseling, even in Zimbabwe. Hunt and Marshall (1995:357) and Hallahan and
Kauffman (1994:325) all point out that special schools play an important role in counseling
parents of children with hearing impairments during and after the placement of their
children. Thirty six percent (36%) of the participants in this study were counseled by
relatives and friends. It is interesting to note that, in the literature, there is very little
information that explores counseling by relatives and friends. Gibson (1990:49) carried out
a study with 54 parents of children with disabilities and established that 46 parents
approached their friends and relatives for moral support and advice only. Only six parents
in Gibson’s study sought actual counseling from relatives and two from friends. This could
be so due to the fact that parents of children with hearing impairments are well aware that
their relatives are part of the family and so may also need counseling. To this effect
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Cartwright, Cartwright and Ward (1995:403), Moores and Meadow (1990:126), Harry
(1997:64) and Kauffman (1992:217) are all of the view that relatives of families that have
children with disabilities also need counseling so that when, they give support, they do so
with a positive attitude. In the quantitative results section, of this study (figure 4.3.2.2)
indicates that relatives and friends were the smallest sources of counseling for parents of
children with hearing impairments.
On the number of participants who received counseling and those who did not, out of 218
participants who responded, 97% indicated that they received counseling while 3%
indicated that they did not. Fifty four percent (54%) of those who received counseling,
indicated that counseling helped them to fully accept their children. As indicated in section
5.8, most parents who received counseling confirmed that it helped them accept and cope
with their children. Both quantitative and qualitative results confirm that most parents
received counseling. On whether the parents thought the counseling they received helped
them or not and in what way if they were helped, out of 226 participants who responded,
70% indicated that counseling helped them while 27% did not think so, or were from the
number that did not receive counseling. Fifty seven percent (57%) felt that counseling
helped them to cope with their children. This was also discussed in section 5.8. Results
from both quantitative and qualitative data concur that counseling helped parents to accept
and cope with their children who have hearing impairments. Neukrug (1999:142) asserts
that most parents have a positive towards the welfare of their children and therefore are
eager to implement counseling outcomes. This result confirms the findings by Davis
(1993:147) who interviewed 27 families of children with disabilities after they received
counseling. Out of the 27 families in Davis’ study, 25 indicated that counseling helped
them to accept, cope and understand their children fully. About parents’ views of what
they thought could be done to make counseling more accessible, out of the 206 participants
who responded, 35% suggested awareness campaigns using the media, posters and
advertisements over the radio and/or television. In developing countries as pointed out by
Baine (1988:78), there are limited counseling facilities and most of them are set up in urban
areas. The majority of the people who badly need such services are situated in rural areas.
Therefore for such services to be known there is need to publicize them through the printed
media, television or radio. 76% of the participants suggested that seminars and workshops
would inform more parents about the nearest available counseling services. Fear and
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Woolfe (1996:370) endorse the view that workshops and seminars run by special schools
and parents support groups enlighten parents of children with disabilities responding where
to find relevant professionals in the fields of medicine, psychology, education and
counseling services. Thirty eight percent (38%) of the participants suggested that parents
support groups would help by sharing experiences, ideas, the problems they went through
and the possible solutions to those problems. They suggested that such groups could also
invite professionals to come and address them on topics of their choice. Counselors could
also be invited to give advice and inform parents about the available services. Hardman,
Drew, Egan and Wolf (1993:301) point out that parents prefer to share information with
other parents who have experienced a similar situation and managed to cope. They have
quoted some parents expressing their feelings. For example, one family expressed the
following: “It would be helpful if a family that has gone through a similar experience and
are in a similar situation could share with us the problems they faced and how they solved
them”. Parents support groups are the most relevant and powerful means of counseling,
giving advice, sharing ideas and referring to other professionals (Kirk, Gallagher &
Anastasiow, 1997:371).
Concerning how parents could help more through guidance and counseling, out of 172
participants who responded to this item, 16% suggested that counseling for children with
hearing impairments would help both parents and children. Through such counseling
children would be helped to understand their situation and how to handle certain situations
in relation to their disabilities. Tucker and Nolan (1984:108) suggest that children should
be counseled before they are fitted with hearing aids. They further point out that children
with hearing impairments need to adjust emotionally, socially and psychologically, and
such adjustment can be facilitated through counseling. 30% of the participants in this study
suggested that parents be helped to cope and to integrate their child into the family
network.
Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:495) claim that for families to successfully
integrate their children with disabilities into the broader society calls for the counseling of
parents, siblings and close members of the extended family. Inclusion in broader society is
very valuable for language, social, emotional and psychological development. Twenty five
percent of the participants in this study suggested that counseling should include helping
parents to plan the future of their children with hearing impairments. This is a topical issue
throughout the literature because, so far, there has been very little success in this area (for
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example transition to work life) as evidenced by short period and longitudinal studies
(Edgar, 1987:556, Frank & Sitlington, 1997:48 and Gartner, Lipsky & Turnbull, 1991:121).
Many students with disabilities fail to complete college work and then, whether having
completed or not, often fail to secure reasonably paying employment (Edgar, 1987:555).
This is largely attributed to the education system, poor planning by parents and education
authorities, general unemployment due to changes in economy and societal attitudes
towards people with disabilities (Kisanji, 1993:43). In the next part the quantitative results
obtained pertaining to the counseling of parents of children with hearing impairments by
organizations is explored.
5.13
QUANTITATIVE RESULTS ON SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
The 28 organizations that participated in the study were five special schools, five hospitals,
fifteen churches, and three counseling organizations. All organizations indicated that they
counsel parents of children with disabilities and in particular parents of children with
hearing impairments. Out of the 28 organizations that responded to the item on counseling
parents or families by gender, nine (32%) of the organizations indicated that they counseled
women only and 19 (68%) counseled couples. It is interesting to note that no man was
counseled to a family or parent on his own. Bristol, Gallagher and Schopler (1988:30)
point out that traditionally fathers have not played a large role in seeking counseling and
advice that can help the family in raising a child with disabilities. Studies by Meadow
(1980:168), Moores (1987:84) and Hunt and Marshall (1994:359) all indicate that mothers
play a far more active role than fathers in raising a child with disabilities. However, Kirk,
Gallagher and Anastasiow (1997:29) in their study noted that there is a gradual change such
that fathers are becoming more and more involved in family matters, thus supporting their
wives in raising a child with disabilities. This may be why there is a substantial percentage
of couples counseled. Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:315) endorse that the important factor
for family harmony is when mother and father play their roles and take charge of their
responsibilities.
On the qualifications of counselors, all the organizations indicated that they have qualified
counselors. Out of 28 organizations that responded to this item, four (14%) separate
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organizations each indicated that they had two, 12, 14, and 17 respectively. Another four
groups of three separate organizations (43%) indicated four, six, 15, and 16 respectively.
Four organizations (14%) indicated that they had eight uncertified counselors, while six
thus 21% indicated that they had five.
All the 28 organizations had a total of 109
uncertified counselors. These results are indicated in chapter 4, table 4.8.7. It would
appear that many of the counseling organizations in Zimbabwe have quite a number of
unqualified counselors. Howard (1996:15) carried out a study to find out counseling fees
charged by counseling organizations and the qualifications of their counseling personnel.
The results indicate that most counseling organizations use both qualified and unqualified
personnel due to the fact that there are no gazetted rules to indicate who should and should
not practice counseling.
Studies carried out by Richards (2000:144) in Zimbabwe, Webb (2000:304) in New
Zealand, Howard (1996:78) in the United States of America and Dogan (2000:61) in
Turkey indicate that many practicing counselors in developing countries and even in some
developed countries are unregistered and unlicensed thereby confirming the findings of this
study. Out of 28 organizations that responded to the item of counselors who qualified at
certificate level, 15 (54%) had one, eight (29%) had two, four (14%) had three and one
(4%) had four. Eight organizations responded to the question on qualifications at diploma
level. Of these, six (75%) indicated that they had one counselor qualified at diploma level,
while two different organizations (13%) had two and three counselors qualified at diploma
level respectively. All eight organizations that responded had a total of six counselors
qualified at diploma level. Only one organization (4%) out of 28 responded that they had
one counselor qualified at degree level. All organizations had a total of 10 counselors
qualified at certificate level, six at diploma level and one at degree level making a total of
17 counselors with some form of qualification. Tables 4.8.7 to 4.8.10 in chapter 4 indicate
these results.
It is interesting to note that while clients have more confidence in qualified counselors
(Howard, 1996:84), success in counseling depends on dedication and the relationship
between the client and the counselor. In their study with 35 parents of children with
disabilities, Gibson, Mitchell and Basile (1993:103) indicated that out of the 35 parents,
eight were counseled by para-professionals and 27 by qualified counselors. All eight
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parents who were counseled by semi-qualified counselors continued to receive moral
support and frequent visits after the formal counseling sessions and they managed to adjust
and cope with their situations. Eleven of the 27 parents in this study who were counseled
by qualified counselors dropped from counseling and 16 continued until they were able to
solve their problems. There seems to be strong relationship between follow up after
disengaging from the formal counseling sessions and success in resolving one’s problems.
All counseling organizations counseled between 35 and 62 parents of children with hearing
impairments per year. Quantitative results indicate that parents who were counseled in
counseling organizations were better able to cope with their children with hearing
impairments, after receiving counseling.
There is an indication that counselors in counseling organizations are well equipped
generically, but not necessarily well equipped to counsel people with disabilities and/or
parents of children with disabilities. Even in counseling organizations, the difference
between counseling and advice continues to pose some problems due to the fact that some
techniques in counseling include advice giving. The findings of Howard (1996:7) are
confirmed in this study by the fact that participants indicated that it is not always the case
that qualified counselors perform better than those not qualified in counseling. In his
research study which he carried out with 15 counselors, seven trained and eight untrained,
Colledge (2002:185) found that the counselors’ effectiveness increased with regular
interaction with clients, while confidence in counseling ability, generally acquired through
qualifications, is after all necessary but not sufficient for effective practice.
Results obtained in this study from qualitative data generated from counseling
organizations indicate confirmatory findings to those obtained from parents. All results
corroborate in pointing out that communication and financial constraints are the major
problems faced by parents of children with hearing impairment. It is also clearly indicated
that parents find counseling helpful in order to support them to accept their child with a
hearing impairment. This was corroborated in the data from counseling organizations.
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5.14
CHAPTER SUMMARY
In answering the research question “In what ways did parents of children with hearing
impairments access counseling in Zimbabwe during the period 1999 to 2000?” both
quantitative and qualitative results from parents and from counseling service organizations
indicate that parents of children with hearing impairments accessed counseling through
special schools, hospitals, counseling organizations, churches, relatives, individuals and
friends. The greatest number of parents accessed counseling through special schools,
followed by individual counselors, hospitals, churches, counseling organizations, relatives
and friends respectively. In this study most parents received counseling and are of the
opinion that the counseling they received helped them to accept and cope with their
children.
Most parents expressed the difficulties they went through in raising their
children; for example, lack of communication skills, lack of transport, lack of knowledge of
teaching the child basic survival skills and financial constraints. They also expressed their
views on how counseling can be made more accessible. In this regard parents suggested
the use of campaigns through the media to bring about awareness in terms of disability, the
existence of counseling organizations and where they are situated. The formation and use
of parent support groups to encourage, share ideas and experiences with new parents was
highly recommended. In the next chapter I will give conclusions of the research findings in
relation to the objectives and assumptions of the study. I will also give recommendations
on how sources of counseling can be made known and accessed. Areas of further research
will also be highlighted.
---oOo---
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6
6.1
CONCLUSIVE FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
INTRODUCTION
This chapter will deal with conclusive findings of the study as related to its objectives. The
findings obtained reflect on the objectives and reviewed literature.
The research
assumptions and claims will be revisited and discussed in the light of the findings of this
study. It is my intention to then also give recommendations on how parents can be made
aware of the available counseling services and how they can better access those services.
Recommendations for further research will also be explored.
As stated in chapter 1, the main purpose of this study was to explain the ways in which
parents of children with hearing impairments access counseling services in Zimbabwe.
Through the findings obtained from the collected data, the study demonstrated that special
schools provided most parents of children with hearing impairments with counseling
services. Subsequently, hospitals, churches and registered counseling organizations also
played an important part in providing parents with counseling services. These findings are
discussed extensively in chapter 4. In the reviewed literature in chapter 2, there was a clear
indication that parents of children with disabilities and hearing impairment in particular,
generally access counseling from special schools, counseling organizations, individuals,
professional counselors, churches and relatives.
However, this literature review was
obtained mostly from the western literature, and provided only cautionary guidelines as to
what could be expected in Zimbabwe. The current study focuses on the Zimbabwean
situation and illuminates the complex ways in which parents of children with hearing
impairments access counseling services in this country.
In order to focus on all related aspects of the study, a research question was formulated and
objectives were set out, these will be considered before discussing the assumptions of the
study. The research question of the study was “In what ways did parents of children with
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hearing impairments in Zimbabwe access counseling services during the period 1999 to
2000?”
6.2
•
OBJECTIVES AND FINDINGS
Objective one: To investigate whether parents who received or did not receive
counseling were aware of organizations that offered guidance and counseling
Results of collected data indicate that 90% of the parents received some form of
counseling. Their sources of counseling ranged from special schools, hospitals, churches
and counseling organizations to individuals, relatives and friends. The research indicated
that a majority of parents were aware of organizations that offer counseling services. On
the positive statement 55% indicated that they were aware of organizations that offer
counseling while 52% indicated the same on the negative statement. Both figures show
most parents to be aware of organizations that offer counseling services. It is clear that,
even though most participants did not get counseling from registered counseling
organizations, they were aware that these organizations existed. They may not have been
certain about how much knowledge on disability in general and hearing impairment in
particular was possessed by counselors in counseling organizations.
Whereas parents
would have assumed that personnel in special schools for children with hearing
impairments would have more knowledge about hearing impairment and its effects on a
child.
•
Objective two: To discover parents’ perceptions on whether counseling helped
them to accept and to be able to cope with their children
Both quantitative and qualitative results from the study demonstrate that parents believe
that counseling helped them in the process of accepting their children and enabled them to
better cope with their children. Quantitative results in chapter 4, figure 4.3.8.17 show that
76% of the parents indicated that counseling helped them to accept their children with
hearing impairments. In the same chapter in figure 4.3.8.24, results show that 85% of the
parents indicated that counseling helped them to cope with their children who have hearing
impairments. Qualitative results on table 4.6.4 show that 54% of the participants indicated
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that the counseling they received helped them to accept their children with hearing
impairments. Results on table 4.6.5 show that 70% of the participants indicated that the
counseling they received helped them to cope with their children with hearing impairments.
•
Objective three: To establish the qualifications of the counselors who
counseled parents of children with hearing impairments
The study established that in all the 28 organizations that participated, 10 counselors were
qualified at certificate level, six at diploma level and one at degree level. The majority of
the counselors (109) were not certified. The use of unqualified counselors by counseling
service organizations may indicate the lack of qualified personnel and the need for the
introduction of counseling courses in colleges and at university level. To offer such
services using unqualified personnel may compromise the quality of the services and even
have adverse effects on the clients. There is a clear indication that counseling service
organizations need to upgrade the qualifications of their personnel in order to provide a
quality service.
•
Objective four: To explore recommendations by parents on ways in which
counseling services could be made more accessible in Zimbabwe
Parents suggested having awareness campaigns informing the public about available
counseling services through the use of the media, posters and advertisements. They also
suggested the use of seminars and workshops organized and run by special schools and
counseling organizations, involving parents of children with disabilities. Some parents
further suggested that in such workshops, parents could be enlightened on how they could
access counseling services in cases where financial or transportation difficulties exist. The
final suggestion was the formation of parent support groups which would enable parents of
children with hearing impairments to meet.
They would have opportunity to share
experiences and ideas to find possible solutions to their problems.
Apart from the
objectives, three assumptions were also formulated for the study and these are considered
next.
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•
Synoptic Conclusion
Most of the participants in this study received counseling from special schools. However,
there is also an indication that most of the participants were aware of organizations that
offer counseling services in Zimbabwe but could not access these services for various
reasons. The majority of the participants acknowledged that counseling helped them to
accept and cope with their children who had hearing impairments.
Participants also
indicated the importance of counseling to both children and parents of children with
hearing impairments. The study also indicates that most counseling organizations had very
few qualified counselors with even basic qualifications at certificate level. Most parents
suggested the use of awareness campaigns in order to conscientize the public about the
existing counseling services and how parents can access these services. The formation of
parents support groups was also suggested to enable parents to gain more support and easy
access to counseling organizations.
6.3
•
ASSUMPTIONS AND FINDINGS OF THE STUDY
Assumption one: Most parents received counseling from special schools
This assumption was supported by the findings of this study. It has been established that
most participants (63%) received their counseling from special schools. As pointed out
before, there are five special schools and some other isolated units in Zimbabwe that cater
for children with hearing impairments. All special schools are situated in big towns and
some of the units are in small towns. Unfortunately all registered counseling organizations
are in the capital city, Harare. Large hospitals that have the capability of dealing with
children with disabilities are situated in big cities. Churches, relatives and friends are the
counseling sources that can be found all over the country. Due to the educational needs of
the child, parents visit special schools with the hope of securing an educational placement
for the child. It is in this context that counseling often takes place. Sometimes parents visit
hospitals and are referred to special schools for audiological tests where they are also
counseled.
In developing countries, according to Baine (1988:92) most parents and
children receive counseling in special schools.
Kisanji (1993:73) contends that most
developing countries lack screening centres for children with disabilities and do not have
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established guidance and counseling centres to help parents and children. All counseling is
done in special schools that also have a shortage of qualified personnel and much-needed
reliable equipment to carry out the necessary tests. In developed countries the situation is
different, because there are registered counseling organizations run by qualified personnel.
Hospitals have units from which audiologists operate, carrying out screening tests and also
counseling of parents. In some developed countries, for example in the United Kingdom,
some of the universities have centres for testing and fitting children with hearing aids.
Parents are counseled and given the basics of working with their child with a hearing
impairment.
A good example is the University of Manchester where I took part in
conducting hearing screening tests and the counseling of parents before fitting children
with hearing aids. Hallahan and Kauffman (1994:312) point out that in most developed
countries there are many sources of counseling run by professional people, giving parents
choice. If they can afford to pay, they approach organizations that provide such services.
If parents are not in a position to pay, state hospitals and peripatetic counselors and social
workers will counsel them in either regular or special schools. It is possible that the site of
the data collection might have influenced the results of the study. The fact that parents
were gathered in special schools where some of them were likely to access counseling
could have influenced their responses to the research questions.
In their study in the United States of America, Kretschmer and Kretschmer (1978:186)
confirm that parents of children with disabilities are counseled as soon as the child is
identified as having a hearing impairment and are referred to the appropriate professionals.
However, they also point out that sometimes the child’s hearing impairment is identified
late, after parents had visited different doctors and psychologists without being given a
correct diagnosis. Martin and Clark (1996:78) state that in England visiting health workers
are trained in basic counseling skills and also in screening hearing in babies using basic
equipment.
Results obtained by qualified audiologists and those obtained by trained
visiting health workers were very similar.
If this were to be done in developing countries, health workers could be stationed in
hospitals and special schools to do both screening and counseling. It is interesting to note
that even in developed countries where there are a lot of registered counseling
organizations (Nolan & Tucker, 1981:110) most parents of children with hearing
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impairments prefer to obtain counseling from professionals who have knowledge of hearing
impairment. These are mostly found in special schools for the deaf. As explicitly pointed
out by Kepceoglu (1986:517) counseling in developed and indeed developing countries
started in schools, particularly in the United States of America, and then spread the world
over. In the same vein, while developed countries have established other agencies to offer
counseling services, developing countries still heavily rely on schools as major sources of
counseling (Lansky, 1981:83). Taking note of the participants’ responses in chapter 4,
when they were asked about the difficulties they faced in raising their child with a hearing
impairment, 130 participants (46%) indicated that financial constraints prevented them
from taking children to hospitals, audiologists, special schools and/or counseling
organizations. This could be one of the reasons why most parents were counseled at
special schools where the service is free.
Considering the fact that most participants received counseling from special schools, it
might be a good idea to strengthen the counseling services in these schools. This could be
achieved by establishing counseling centres in these schools, run by qualified personnel in
both special education and counseling. Awareness campaigns could also have their focus
on special schools so that parents would have all the resources in one area, alleviating the
problem of transport. Units for children with hearing impairments, that are set up in rural
schools, could have peri-patetic counselors to service parents in rural areas.
•
Assumption two: Parents were not aware of different counseling organizations
in Zimbabwe
This assumption was not supported by the findings of the study. Analyzed data results
indicate that slightly more than half (55%) of the participants were aware of counseling
organizations in Zimbabwe. 41% of the participants indicated that they were not aware of
such organizations.
On the reverse question, 52% indicated that they were aware of
counseling organizations while 44% indicated that they were not aware of counseling
organizations in Zimbabwe. Tucker (1997:39) contends that despite the availability of
other counseling services, many parents in developed countries make use of a
multidisciplinary team of professionals: social workers, psychologists, audiologists,
specialist teachers, counselors, speech therapists and doctors who give them counsel and
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advice and are generally stationed in special schools or work as peripatetic service
providers in state schools. The 44% of the participants who indicated that they were not
aware of counseling organizations are likely to be those who live in rural and semi-urban
areas since almost all counseling organizations are situated in big cities. Studies by Mba
(1990:15) in Nigeria and Miles (1984:278) in Asia clearly indicate that, in developing
countries, counseling and screening facilities for children with disabilities are limited and
generally centralized in big cities. They further point out that in spite of all efforts by
different governments, counseling is still a new phenomenon in most developing countries
and there is lack of information, knowledge and understanding of counseling among
ordinary people. A study carried out by Msengi (1987:7) in Tanzania shows that the
commonly used term is guidance, which has connotations of leading, directing, coaching
and advising at problematic times. In this study it may be that even if parents were aware
of other counseling organizations, they preferred to go to special schools where they could
be guided and given advice by teachers who knew more about hearing impairment.
Moreover most education systems refer to guidance practitioners as guidance teachers,
denoting guidance as a tool of instruction. Parents in this study might have thought that
special schools would tell them what to do and possibly give them solutions to their
problems, since they were continuously dealing with parents and children with similar
problems. Another study by Yahaya-Isa (1980:14) indicates that both groups of parents
those who were aware of registered counseling organizations and those who were not, all
preferred to obtain guidance and counseling from special schools. This ties up the first two
assumptions in this study, for example site of access and awareness of counseling: Most
participants were aware of counseling services and most participants accessed it at special
schools.
•
Assumption three: Counseling organizations do not have qualified counselors
This assumption was supported by the findings of the study. As indicated in chapter 4, in
all 28 organizations these were only 17 counselors with some form of qualification ranging
from certificate to degree level, plus 108 uncertified counselors. A study by Kepceoglu
(1994:60) in Turkey, shows that persons who were appointed as counselors were in actual
fact specialized in different disciplines, other than counseling, such as sociology,
psychology, education and philosophy. While developing countries use schools as their
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major sources of counseling, for both parents of children with disabilities and children,
Sloman (1991:6) points out that most of the personnel responsible for this counseling are
not specifically qualified in that area.
A study carried out by Webb (2000:310) in New Zealand indicates that for a long period
New Zealand mainly used teachers, social workers and church ministers as counselors.
There the trend is slowly changing with the government demanding that counselors be
qualified and registered.
provided.
This helps to control standards and the quality of service
More and more authorities (Blocher, 2000:8; Neukrug, 1999:25; Webb,
2000:304 and Dogan 200:61) suggest that counseling has never been taken as a serious
profession since it used to be carried out by external sources of support such as extended
family, friends, relatives, neighbors and social clubs. These are still deemed more effective
than professionals and counseling agencies (Hallahan & Kauffman, 1994:511), mostly due
to the fact that they nurture clients, offering moral, social and material support until they
master their problems.
In this study, this is also mentioned in chapter 2 on reviewed literature. Unfortunately these
informal supports, once so prevalent in our society, are fast disappearing. This is largely
due to demographic changes such as the increase in single–parent families. Thus families
today are less able to rely on informal social networks for counseling support. While
developing countries will continue with the same trend until they address the situation of
the shortage of qualified counselors, developed countries are fast clamping down on
uncertified counselors and unregistered counseling agencies (Howard, 1996:15).
Colleges and universities in Zimbabwe did not offer counseling courses until the year 2000
when Zimbabwe Open University (ZOE) started offering such courses at degree level. The
first intake will complete the course in 2004.
Prior to the establishment of ZOE,
Institutions of higher learning offered students counseling as a component of other courses
such as psychology, special education and social work. The current degree programme
offering counseling is likely to alleviate the shortage of qualified counselors in Zimbabwe.
An unpublished survey carried out by Richards (1996:12) in Zimbabwe, indicates that in
1996 there were only 13 qualified counselors within the registered counseling organizations
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and in special schools for children with hearing impairments. It should be noted however,
that this number was not that of counselors in the whole country but only counselors in
counseling agencies and special schools. Some developed countries have institutions that
offer dubious counseling qualifications.
This is however, also evident in developing
countries. Keith-Spiegel (1991:55) points out that the United States of America is cluttered
with bogus institutions of higher learning that issue master’s and doctor’s degrees that are
not worth the paper they are printed on. These outfits are unconcerned with ethical
standards or with whom they might hurt, and simply prey on people who are looking for
short cuts. Counselors who go through such institutions cause more harm than good to
their clients.
From this discussion it is evident that two assumptions of the study were confirmed at its
conclusion. One assumption was de-confirmed. In the next section concluding remarks
will be made.
6.4
MAJOR CHALLENGES ARISING FROM THE STUDY AND
SUGGESTIONS TO ADDRESS THEM
It is clear from the research findings and discussions that there are challenges at hand that
need to be addressed in order for parents of children with hearing impairments to cope with
their children and to access counseling services effectively. It is my intention to point out
the concerns of this study and suggest possible means of addressing them after which I will
give recommendations for further research.
•
Improving ways in which parents can access counseling services
If special schools join hands with counseling organizations to provide workshops and
seminars for parents of children with hearing impairments, the ways in which they access
counseling services is likely to be enhanced.
As suggested in this study by parents
themselves, such workshops could be the means of empowering parents to inculcate basic
living skills in their children. Such skills involve eating, dressing, and personal hygiene,
turn taking and bathroom habits. Means of communication can also be taught to parents
over a period of time.
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Mobile teams made up of personnel from counseling organizations and special schools
could run such workshops and seminars in rural and semi urban areas to reach parents who
cannot meet the expenses of traveling and accommodation in towns. Such workshops and
seminars can be run on a yearly basis with the support of schools’ psychological services,
which are allocated funds for such activities. The situation can be reviewed from time to
time depending on the needs of the parents and the feedback received from them.
•
Parents need to be made aware of counseling service organizations
As mentioned by parents, awareness campaigns through the use of the media, posters and
advertisements can be undertaken.
The exercise would have names of counseling
organizations, contact numbers, maps that indicate where they are situated and the services
they offer. Radio and television programmes can be launched to reach as many parents as
is possible. Informative posters can be put at shops, clinics, schools, post offices and
banks, both in towns and in rural areas.
•
Financial constraints
There are various options that can be explored in terms of alleviating financial constraints.
Financial assistance should be sought through social welfare. Unfortunately the department
operates on a shoestring budget that has become just a drop in the ocean considering the
ever-increasing demand for financial aid. Special schools, on behalf of parents in need can
approach non-governmental organizations. Funds are needed for transport to hospitals,
treatment fees, school and boarding fees, uniforms and hearing aids. Swedish International
Development Agency (SIDA) used to fund such causes but due to deteriorating relations
between the two countries, the fund has been stopped.
Parents can also empower
themselves by embarking on community projects that may bring together relevant
stakeholders to raise funds for specific causes.
•
Lack of qualified counselors
More institutions of higher learning can be encouraged to introduce programmes that offer
counseling courses. Personnel already in counseling institutions should be encouraged to
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register with Zimbabwe Open University to study for a qualification. In-service workshops
and seminars can be run to equip counselors in practice with the skills needed for effective
counseling for parents of children with hearing impairments. Uncertified counselors can be
phased out in time as more and more qualified counselors join these counseling
organizations. Hospitals, special schools and churches can be encouraged to use personnel
who have acquired qualifications in counseling.
6.5
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH
This study left a number of areas untapped. In order to fully understand what is going on in
the area of special education and hearing impairment in particular, concerning counseling,
there is need to investigate and find out:
•
The actual status of counseling skills used by counselors.
•
The effectiveness of the counseling offered to both the parents of children and
children with hearing impairments themselves.
•
The effects of counseling on parents of children with hearing impairments.
•
The role of guidance and counseling in the lives of children with hearing
impairments.
I recommend these as areas for further research in order to understand the effect and
influence of counseling in the life of parents and children with hearing impairments. Such
a study would include children with hearing impairments as is suggested in the qualitative
results of this study.
6.6
CONCLUDING REMARKS
Different countries the world over, developed and developing, have now adopted
counseling, originally an American phenomenon, to assist people to cope with the problems
brought about by natural, social and economic changes in the modern world. Although
many families whose children have disabilities manage their lives as effectively as other
families, most of them require counseling to facilitate the integration of the disabled child
into the family. Whilst most parents experience diverse problems and stress in raising their
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children, parents of children with disabilities appear to experience more stress and hence
seem to have a greater need for counseling than others.
In agreement with the observations in other countries of the world, counseling has received
a positive response from parents of children with disabilities in Zimbabwe for the reasons
indicated in chapter 4. Counseling serves the purpose of:
•
equipping parents with knowledge about hearing impairment and its causes.
•
helping parents adopt a positive attitude towards the child, that would lead to
acceptance.
•
equipping parents with the necessary skills to cope with the child.
•
helping parents integrate the child into the family.
•
making parents aware of how they can access counseling and other professional
services such as medical, educational and audiological services.
Given the historical background of counseling that was explored in chapter 2, it would
stand to reason that families and parents lacking peace and harmony would seek the
services of counselors. Even though almost half of the parents of children with hearing
impairments in Zimbabwe were aware of organizations that offered counseling, hardships
in the form of financial constraints and lack of transport prevented them from accessing
such services in good time. Due to financial constraints, most of the parents’ received
spasmodic counseling free of charge from special schools instead of from registered
counseling organizations that demand payment. Even then, most special schools and units
for children with special needs are located in the big cities so that people in the rural areas
need to travel long distances using expensive and unreliable public transport. This makes it
difficult for parents to easily access counseling from the people who have knowledge about
hearing impairment and skills in counseling. Instead they resort to relatives and friends
who might themselves be in need of counseling. While external support systems, such as
members of the extended family, friends and the community neighborhood still play a part
in counseling, this is fast disappearing due to current developments that have fashioned
many single-parent families. Unfortunately counseling organizations and special schools
are not spread throughout the country nor do they have branches across the country that can
service parents in small towns, semi-urban areas and villages in rural areas. In chapter 4,
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the results of the study clearly indicate in parents’ responses that counseling is important
for both children and parents. Against this background it is imperative that counseling
plays a significant role in families that have children with hearing impairments. With this
premise the importance of access to counseling services cannot be over-emphasized.
---oooOooo---
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APPENDICES
Page
APPENDIX A
Questionnaire to Parents
First Pool of Questions
211
APPENDIX B
Second Pool of Questions
216
APPENDIX C
Third Pool of Questions
219
APPENDIX D
Final Questionnaire
222
APPENDIX E
Open-ended Questionnaire to Parents
First Pool of Questions
226
APPENDIX F
Second Pool of Questions
227
APPENDIX G
Third Pool of Questions
228
APPENDIX H
Final questionnaire
229
APPENDIX I
Questionnaire to Service Organizations
First Pool of Questions
230
APPENDIX J
Second Pool of Questions
232
APPENDIX K
Final Questionnaire
234
APPENDIX L
Interview Questions
236
APPENDIX M
Research Diary
237
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix A (First Pool of Questions)
QUESTIONNAIRE TO PARENTS
SECTION A
Please put a ring around the appropriate number at the end of or below every statement or
question.
(i)
ii)
Gender of parents
Gender of child
(iii) My child was born deaf
(iv) My child became deaf later
(v)
How old is your child?
Man
Woman
1
2
Boy
Girl
1
2
Yes
No
1
2
Yes
No
1
2
5-8 yrs
1
9-13 years
14-18 years
2
3
SECTION B
Please put a ring around the appropriate letter/letters closest to your level of agreement.
KEY: (5) SA (4) A (3) U –
(2) D –
(1) SD –
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
1.
Counseling is totally different from advice.
SA
2.
I am not aware of any organization that offers counseling in Zimbabwe
SA
3.
A
A
U
U
D
SD
D
SD
Counseling does not help parents to accept the idea of having a hearing impaired
child in the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
— 211 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
4.
Counseling helped me to plan the future of my child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
5.
We do not allow our child to play with other children in our community because
they may not treat him well.
SA
A
U
D
SD
6.
My child does not relate well and interact effectively with other members of
the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
7.
Most people, who counseled us, told us what to do.
SA
8.
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
A
A
A
It is almost impossible to plan the future of a child who is hearing impaired.
SA
13.
A
My child fits well and interacts effectively with family members.
SA
12.
SD
Guidance and counseling does not help much without money.
SA
11.
D
The counseling we received did not help us to cope with the child at all.
SA
10.
U
Counseling is a must for parents of children with hearing impairments.
SA
9.
A
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
Most counselors did not give us any guidance at all.
SA
14.
Without counseling one cannot fully accept having a child with hearing impairment
in the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
15.
With or without help from other organizations, it is parents’ responsibility to fully
cater for their children who are hearing impaired.
SA
A
U
D
SD
16.
We allow our child to make friends and play with other children in our
neighborhood.
SA
A
U
D
SD
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
17.
The problem with counseling is that one is not provided with answers.
SA
18.
23.
24.
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
D
SD
A
U
A
U
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
It is difficult to separate counseling from advice.
Relatives are the best counselors in family problems.
I received counseling from individuals.
26.
The church played an important part in counseling me.
SA
I received counseling from special schools and hospitals.
SA
28.
U
Guidance and counseling are important for both parents and the child.
25.
27.
A
Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is hearing impaired.
SA
22.
SD
Counselors also referred me to other professionals for further help.
SA
21.
D
Counseling really helped us to understand the child.
SA
20.
U
Parents can equally do well for their child without guidance and counselling.
SA
19.
A
Organizations that offer counseling helped in my situation.
SA
A
U
D
SD
29.
I was counseled by well-trained counselors.
SA
A
U
D
SD
30.
I never received counseling from anybody.
SA
A
U
D
SD
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
31.
Counseling did not help us to understand the needs of our child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
32.
My child has both male and female friends.
33.
I now have a peace of mind concerning my child with a hearing impairment.
SA
34.
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
My child is not free to discuss things with other people.
35.
My child is living freely and happily.
36.
The problem with counseling is that one is not provided with answers.
SA
37.
U
My other children have fully accepted my child with a hearing impairment.
SA
38.
A
A
U
D
SD
Different people came to counsel us in connection with our child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
39.
I can easily tell that my child is frustrated.
40.
Counseling helped to change my way of thinking concerning my child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
41.
My child hardly has a friend.
42.
My partner is not interested in going for counseling.
SA
43.
Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is hearing impaired.
SA
44.
A
U
Since the birth of this child with hearing impairments, our friends and relatives have
stopped visiting us.
SA
A
U
D
SD
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
45.
Children who are hearing impaired should be looked after by the Social Welfare.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
46.
Relatives only give advice but not counseling.
47.
Parents of children with hearing impairments do not need counseling.
SA
A
U
48.
The government should deploy counselors in rural areas to help parents who have
children with special needs.
SA
A
U
D
SD
49.
I am aware of organizations that offer counseling in Zimbabwe.
SA
50.
A
U
D
SD
We do not allow our child to play with other children in our community because
they may not treat him well.
SA
A
U
D
SD
---oOo---
— 215 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix B (Second Pool of Questions)
QUESTIONNAIRE TO PARENTS
SECTION A
Please put a ring around the appropriate number at the end of or below every statement or
question.
(i)
Gender of parents
1
ii)
Woman
2
Gender of child
1
Boy
Girl
2
(iii) My child was born deaf
1
Yes
No
2
(iv) My child became deaf later
1
(v)
Man
Yes
No
2
How old is your child?
5-8 yrs
1
9-13 years
14-18 years
2
3
SECTION B
Please put a ring around the appropriate letter/letters closest to your level of agreement.
KEY: (5) SA (4) A (3) U –
(2) D –
(1) SD –
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
1.
Counseling is totally different from advice.
SA
2.
I am not aware of any organization that offers counseling in Zimbabwe.
SA
3.
A
A
U
U
D
SD
D
SD
Counseling does not help parents to accept the idea of having a hearing impaired
child in the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
— 216 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
4.
Counseling helped me to plan the future of my child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
5.
We do not allow our child to play with other children in our community because
they may not treat him well.
SA
A
U
D
SD
6.
My child does not relate well and interact effectively with other members of the
family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
7.
Most people, who counseled us, told us what to do.
SA
8.
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
A
A
A
It is almost impossible to plan the future of a child who is hearing impaired.
SA
13.
A
My child fits well and interacts effectively with family members.
SA
12.
SD
I am aware of organizations that offer counseling in Zimbabwe.
SA
11.
D
The counseling we received did not help us to cope with the child at all.
SA
10.
U
Counseling is a must for parents of children with hearing impairments.
SA
9.
A
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
Most counselors did not give us any guidance at all.
SA
14.
Without counseling one cannot fully accept having a child with hearing impairment
in the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
15.
With or without help from other organizations, it is parents’ responsibility to fully
cater for their children who are hearing impaired.
SA
A
U
D
SD
16. We allow our child to make friends and play with other children in our
neighbourhood.
SA
A
U
D
SD
— 217 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
17.
The problem with counseling is that one is not provided with answers.
SA
18.
23.
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
D
SD
A
U
Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is hearing impaired.
SA
22.
A
U
Guidance and counseling are important for both parents and the child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
It is difficult to separate counseling from advice.
24.
I was counselled by well trained counselors
25.
Counseling did not help us to understand the needs of our child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
26.
Counseling does not help without money.
27.
Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is hearing impaired.
SA
28.
30.
A
U
Children who are hearing impaired should be looked after by the Social Welfare.
SA
29.
SD
Counselors also referred me to other professionals for further help.
SA
21.
D
Counseling really helped us to understand the child.
SA
20.
U
Parents can equally do well for their child without guidance and counselling.
SA
19.
A
A
U
D
SD
Parents of children with hearing impairments do not need counseling.
Relatives are the best counselors.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
---oOo---
— 218 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix C (Third pool of questions)
QUESTIONNAIRE TO PARENTS
SECTION A
Please put a ring around the appropriate number at the end of or below every statement
or question.
(i)
Gender of parents
Man
1
ii)
Gender of child
Boy
1
(iii) My child was born deaf
Yes
1
(iv) My child became deaf later
Yes
1
(v)
How old is your child?
Woman
2
Girl
2
No
2
No
2
5-8 yrs
9-13 years
1
2
14-18 years
3
SECTION B
Please put a ring around the appropriate letter/letters closest to your level of agreement.
KEY: (5) SA (4) A (3) U –
(2) D –
(1) SD –
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
1.
Counseling is totally different from advice.
SA
2.
I am not aware of any organization that offers counseling in Zimbabwe.
SA
3.
A
A
U
U
D
SD
D
SD
Counseling does not help parents to accept the idea of having a hearing impaired
child in the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
— 219 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
4.
Counseling helped me to plan the future of my child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
5.
We do not allow our child to play with other children in our community because
they may not treat him well.
SA
A
U
D
SD
6.
My child does not relate well and interact effectively with other members of the
family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
7.
Most people, who counseled us, told us what to do.
SA
8.
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
A
A
A
It is almost impossible to plan the future of a child who is hearing impaired.
SA
13.
A
My child fits well and interacts effectively with family members.
SA
12.
SD
I am aware of organizations that offer counseling in Zimbabwe.
SA
11.
D
The counseling we received did not help us to cope with the child at all.
SA
10.
U
Counseling is a must for parents of children with hearing impairments.
SA
9.
A
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
Most counselors did not give us any guidance at all.
SA
14.
Without counseling one cannot fully accept having a child with hearing impairment
in the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
15.
With or without help from other organizations, it is parents’ responsibility to fully
cater for their children who are hearing impaired.
SA
A
U
D
SD
16.
We allow our child to make friends and play with other children in our
neighborhood.
SA
A
U
D
SD
— 220 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
17.
The problem with counseling is that one is not provided with answers.
SA
18.
23.
24.
28.
SD
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
D
SD
A
U
A
U
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
D
SD
It is difficult to separate counseling from advice.
Counseling did not help us to understand the needs of our child.
A
Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is hearing impaired.
A
U
Children who are hearing impaired should be looked after by the Social Welfare.
SA
27.
D
SA
SA
26.
U
Guidance and counseling are important for both parents and the child.
SA
25.
A
Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is hearing impaired.
SA
22.
SD
Counselors also referred me to other professionals for further help.
SA
21.
D
Counseling really helped us to understand the child.
SA
20.
U
Parents can equally do well for their child without guidance and counselling.
SA
19.
A
A
U
D
SD
Parents of children with hearing impairments do not need counseling.
Relatives are the best counselors.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
---oOo---
— 221 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix D (Final Questionnaire)
QUESTIONNAIRE TO PARENTS
SECTION A
Please put a ring around the appropriate number at the end of or below every statement or
question.
(i)
ii)
Gender of parents
Man
Gender of child
(iii) My child was born deaf
Woman
1
2
Boy
Girl
1
2
Yes
No
1
(iv) My child became deaf later
2
Yes
No
1
(v)
How old is your child?
5-8 yrs
2
9-13 years
1
14-18 years
23
(vi) Did you receive any counseling at all?
Yes
1
No
2
If yes, from which of the following; (Special Schools) (Counseling Organizations)
1
(Churches) (Hospitals) (Relatives) (Individuals)
3
4
5
6
2
(Friends)
7
(None of these)
8
— 222 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
SECTION B
Please put a ring around the appropriate letter/letters closest to your level of agreement.
KEY: (5) SA (4) A (3) U –
(2) D –
(1) SD –
1.
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
Parents of children with hearing impairments do not need counseling.
SA
2.
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
I am not aware of any organization that offers counseling in Zimbabwe
SA
4.
U
Although we received guidance and counseling, we still cannot cope with the child.
SA
3.
A
A
Counseling did not help us to understand the needs of our child.
SA
A
5.
Counseling does not help parents to accept the idea of having a hearing impaired
child in the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
6.
Children who are hearing impaired should be looked after by the Social Welfare.
SA
7.
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
Counseling helped me to plan the future of my child.
SA
8.
We do not allow our child to play with other children in our community because
they may not treat him well.
SA
A
U
D
SD
9.
My child does not relate well and interact effectively with other members of the
family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
10.
Most people, who counseled us, told us what to do.
SA
A
U
D
SD
— 223 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
11.
Counseling is a must for parents of children with hearing impairments
SA
12.
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
It is almost impossible to plan the future of a child who is hearing impaired.
SA
16.
SD
My child fits well and interacts effectively with family members
SA
15.
D
I am aware of organizations that offer counseling in Zimbabwe
SA
14.
U
The counseling we received did not help us to cope with the child at all.
SA
13.
A
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
Most counselors did not give us any guidance at all.
SA
17.
Without counseling one cannot fully accept having a child with hearing impairment
in the family.
SA
A
U
D
SD
18.
With or without help from other organizations, it is parents’ responsibility to fully
cater for their children who are hearing impaired.
SA
A
U
D
SD
19.
We allow our child to make friends and play with other children in our
neighborhood.
SA
A
U
D
SD
20.
The problem with counseling is that one is not provided with answers.
SA
21.
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
Counseling really helped us to understand the child.
SA
23.
U
Parents can equally do well for their child without guidance and counseling
SA
22.
A
Counselors also referred me to other professionals for further help.
SA
A
U
— 224 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
24.
Counseling helped us to cope with our child who is hearing impaired.
SA
25.
26.
A
U
D
SD
Guidance and counseling are important for both parents and the child.
SA
A
U
D
SD
SA
A
U
D
SD
It is difficult to separate counseling from advice.
---oOo---
— 225 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix E (First Pool of Questions)
OPEN ENDED QUESTIONS TO PARENTS
SECTION A
1.
What five major difficulties did you meet in raising your child with hearing
impairments?
2.
Which individuals or organizations counseled you?
3.
Did the counseling you received help you?
If yes, how?
If no, why?
4.
What do you think the government should do to help parents of children with
disabilities?
5.
In your view, what should counseling organizations do to make their services more
accessible to parents of children with disabilities?
6.
Do you believe counseling really works? Why do you say so?
7.
Do you think counseling helps parents to cope with their children? Give reasons.
8.
In your view why should parents of children with hearing impairment get
counseling?
9.
What do you think should be done to make guidance and counseling accessible to
parents?
10.
How can guidance and counseling help you more as parents?
11.
What should be done to improve the counseling situation for parents of children
with hearing impairments?
12.
In a family with a child with hearing impairments, who should be counseled? Why?
---oOo--— 226 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix F (Second pool of questions)
OPEN ENDED QUESTIONS TO PARENTS
Please try and answer all questions explaining your ideas fully.
1.
What 5 major difficulties did you meet in raising your child with hearing
impairments?
2.
Which individuals or organizations counseled you?
3.
Did the counseling you received help you?
If yes, how?
If no, why?
4.
What do you think the government should do to help parents of children with
disabilities?
5.
In your view, what should counseling organizations do to make their services more
accessible to parents of children with disabilities?
6.
Do you believe counseling really works? Why do you say so?
7.
Do you think counseling helps parents to cope with their children? Give reasons.
8.
In your view why should parents of children with hearing impairment get
counseling?
9.
What do you think should be done to make guidance and counseling accessible to
parents?
10.
How can guidance and counseling help you more as parents?
---oOo--— 227 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix G (Third pool of questions)
OPEN ENDED QUESTIONS TO PARENTS
Please try and answer all questions explaining your ideas fully.
1.
What five major difficulties did you meet in raising your child with hearing
impairments?
2.
Which individuals or organizations counseled you?
3.
Did the counseling you received help you?
If yes, how?
If no, why?
4.
What do you think the government should do to help parents of children with
disabilities?
5.
In your view, what should counseling organizations do to make their services more
accessible to parents of children with disabilities?
6.
Do you think counseling helps parents to cope with their children?
Give reasons for your answer.
7.
What do you think should be done to make guidance and counseling accessible to
parents?
8.
How can guidance and counseling help you more as parents?
---oOo---
— 228 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix H (Final Questionnaire)
OPEN ENDED QUESTIONS TO PARENTS
Please try and answer all questions explaining your ideas fully.
1.
What five major difficulties did you meet in raising your child with hearing
impairments?
2.
Which individuals or organizations counseled you?
3.
Did the counseling you received help you?
If yes, how?
If no, why?
4.
Do you think counseling helps parents to cope with their children? Give reasons.
5.
What do you think should be done to make guidance and more accessible to
parents?
6.
How can guidance and counseling help you more as parents?
---oOo---
— 229 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix I (First pool of questions)
QUESTIONNAIRE TO SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
SECTION A
Please circle the appropriate number below or at the end of the statement or question.
1.
2.
3.
(Special Schools
Hospitals
Churches
Counseling Organizations)
1
2
3
4
Have you counseled parents of children with disabilities?
Yes
No
1
2
Have you counseled parents of deaf children?
Yes
No
1
4.
5.
Who did you counsel?
Father
Mother
Both
1
2
3
Do you have qualified counselors in your organization?
Yes
1
6.
7.
2
No
2
Please indicate the number under each qualification
Uncertified
Certificate
Diploma
Degree
(i)_____
(ii)_____
(iii)_____
(iv)_____
How many parents of children with hearing impairments do you counsel per year?
Less than
five
ten
(i)
(ii)
twenty thirty forty
(iii)
(iv)
(v)
fifty one hundred
(vi)
(vii)
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
SECTION B
Please put a ring around the appropriate letter/letters closest to your level of agreement.
KEY: (5) SA (4) A (3) U –
(2) D –
(1) SD –
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
8.
Most parents who were counseled at our organization are able to cope with their
children.
SA
A
U
D
SD
9.
Knowledge of special education is necessary in order for one to counsel parents of
children with disabilities
SA
A
U
D
SD
10.
Our counselors are well equipped to work with parents of children with hearing
impairments.
SA
A
U
D
SD
11.
Not all of our counselors know the difference between counseling and advice.
SA
12.
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
Our qualified counselors perform better than our unqualified counselors.
SA
17.
A
Our counselors are not comfortable to deal with parents of children with disabilities.
SA
16.
SD
Counseling organizations should serve parents in rural areas.
SA
15.
D
Most parents who were counseled keep on coming back for more help.
SA
14.
U
It is important to have qualified counselors in our organization.
SA
13.
A
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
We counsel very few parents of children with disabilities.
SA
---oOo--— 231 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix J (Second pool of questions)
QUESTIONNAIRE TO SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
SECTION A
Please circle the appropriate number below or at the end of the statement or question.
1.
2.
3.
(Special Schools
Hospitals
Churches
Counseling Organizations)
1
2
3
4
Have you counseled parents of children with disabilities?
Yes
No
1
2
Have you counseled parents of deaf children?
Yes
No
1
4.
5.
Who did you counsel?
Father
Mother
Both
1
2
3
Do you have qualified counselors in your organization?
Yes
2
6.
7.
2
No
2
Please indicate the number under each qualification
Uncertified
Certificate
Diploma
Degree
(i)_____
(ii)_____
(iii)_____
(iv)_____
How many parents of children with hearing impairments do you counsel per year?
Less than
five
ten
twenty
thirty
forty
fifty
one hundred
(i)
(ii)
(iii)
(iv)
(v)
(vi)
(vii)
— 232 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
SECTION B
Please put a ring around the appropriate letter/letters closest to your level of agreement.
KEY: (5) SA (4) A (3) U –
(2) D –
(1) SD –
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
8.
Most parents who were counseled at our organization are able to cope with their
children.
SA
A
U
D
SD
9.
Our counselors are well equipped to work with parents of children with hearing
impairments.
SA
A
U
D
SD
10.
Not all of our counselors know the difference between counseling and advice.
SA
11.
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
A
U
D
SD
U
D
SD
We counsel very few parents of children with disabilities.
SA
15.
SD
Our qualified counselors perform better than our unqualified counselors.
SA
14.
D
Our counselors are not comfortable to deal with parents of children with disabilities.
SA
13.
U
Most parents who were counseled keep on coming back for more help.
SA
11.
A
Counseling organizations should serve parents in rural areas.
SA
A
---oOo---
— 233 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix K (Final Questionnaire)
QUESTIONNAIRE TO SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS
SECTION A
Please circle the appropriate number below or at the end of the statement or question.
1.
2.
3.
(Special Schools
Hospitals
Churches
Counseling Organizations)
1
2
3
4
Have you counseled parents of children with disabilities?
Yes
No
1
2
Have you counseled parents of deaf children?
Yes
1
4.
5.
6.
7.
Who did you counsel?
No
2
Father
Mother
Both
1
2
3
Do you have qualified counselors in your organization?
Yes
No
3
2
Please indicate the number under each qualification
Uncertified
Certificate
Diploma
Degree
(i)_____
(ii)_____
(iii)_____
(iv)_____
How many parents of children with hearing impairments do you counsel per year?
Less than
five
ten
twenty
thirty
forty
fifty
one hundred
(i)
(ii)
(iii)
(iv)
(v)
(vi)
(vii)
— 234 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
SECTION B
Please put a ring around the appropriate letter/letters closest to your level of agreement.
KEY: (5) SA (4) A (3) U –
(2) D –
(1) SD –
Strongly Agree
Agree
Undecided
Disagree
Strongly Disagree
8.
Most parents who were counseled at our organization are able to cope with their
children.
SA
A
U
D
SD
9.
Our counselors are well equipped to work with parents of children with hearing
impairments.
SA
A
U
D
SD
10.
Not all of our counselors know the difference between counseling and advice.
SA
11
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
Most parents who were counseled keep on coming back for more help.
SA
A
U
12. Our counselors are not comfortable to deal with parents of children with disabilities.
SA
A
U
D
SD
D
SD
13. Our qualified counselors perform better than our unqualified counselors.
SA
A
U
---oOo---
— 235 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix L (Interview questions)
1.
Is your child a boy or girl? How old is your child?
2.
When did you discover that your child was deaf?
3.
What problems did you meet in bringing up your child?
4.
What did you do when you discovered that your child was deaf?
5.
Did you get any counseling from anybody? Who?
6.
Did you approach any Service Organizations for help?
7.
What help did you get from them?
8.
Does your child mix freely with his/her siblings? Other children in the community?
9.
Are you able to cope with your child?
10.
What future plans do you have for your child?
11.
In your view does counseling help parents of children with hearing
impairments to plan for their future?
12.
What do you think should be done to make counseling more accessible to parents?
---oOo---
— 236 —
University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
Appendix M (Research Diary)
After completing my college education I joined the teaching profession. I taught for four
years in an ordinary school and then joined special education in 1984. I taught children
with hearing impairments.
As a young teacher I found it challenging, sometimes
depressing and unsatisfying. The success rate was minimal. In 1986 I went for further
education and studied in the area of special needs. I specialised in the education of children
with hearing impairments. I taught for one year and went for further education in the UK
where I obtained a master’s degree in Special Education International at the University of
Manchester. In the UK I got experience with children of different disabilities. The course I
studied included, audiology, speech, assessments, counseling, teaching and programme
planning.
I worked with parents of children with disabilities as a teacher, counselor, headmaster and
lecturer. During all the years of my working career, I got to know the problems parents of
children with disabilities experienced. When I studied counseling I learnt more about how
such parents felt and how they could be helped. The first parent-group I organized helped
me to fully interact with parents and in turn they confided in me. At the time my main duty
was to carry out assessments, counsel parents and children and advise them of where to get
professional help. It is during that time that I noticed the importance of counseling parents
of children with disabilities.
Many parents who had children with hearing impairments in primary schools continued to
come back to these schools for advice and guidance. Having observed this I spoke to some
parents to find out their problems. The parents did not seem to know exactly what to do
with their children. This motivated me to carry out this study.
I registered with the University of Zimbabwe in 1997. The whole of 1998 I worked on the
literature review and the instrument to be used in data collection. In 1999 and part of 2000,
I collected the data. During the second term of 2000, my supervisor left for overseas. The
rest of 2000 and 2001 I was stuck, frustrated and decided to shelf my study. The most
disturbing point was that nobody was suitably qualified to supervise me in the areas of
special education and counseling. Fortunately when I moved to Botswana I met a South
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
African friend who told me about the University of Pretoria. He stressed that it was the
most efficient University in South Africa but warned me that the standards were very high.
He pointed out that I needed to work day and night if I was to make it. In October 2002, I
forwarded my personal documents and qualifications for consideration. I was accepted and
I registered. I was then allocated a promoter. I made an effort to contact her and she spoke
to me on the phone. She asked me to send her the work I had done and at the same time
encouraged me to continue working on the literature review and Chapter one.
With time, through her guidance I continued to work on my document. I also gave her
copies of my instruments and showed her the collected data. The working title kept on
changing and the study took a new direction. It indeed was almost a new study. We
arranged that I visit the University of Pretoria to meet her in person and to get to know each
other as well as to discuss my study. The arranged date was a PhD proposal defence for
some students. This was a great opportunity for me to experience how students prepare and
defend their proposals. It helped me to prepare for the defense of my proposal. When I
came back I worked on my proposal, which went to and from my promoter six times before
she accepted it as one worth presenting to the Department of Educational Psychology and
then the Faculty of Education. The department provided good suggestions, passed it and a
date was set for me to defend my proposal at Faculty level. On that particular day I was the
second one to defend my proposal. I had prepared well and I knew my study but it was not
easy. I managed and my proposal was accepted.
It is important for me to point out that studying through distance education is not easy,
particularly when you are far away from the University and do not have the opportunity to
share your difficulties with your promoter while you are talking face-to-face. Sometimes
you want to see what other students have done or some PhD theses that have been passed.
Although I missed out on face-to-face conversations, I must point out that my promoter is
excellent in communication, quick feedback, support and encouragement. I cannot ask for
more as far as supervision is concerned. She has never failed me once. We worked
mornings, afternoons, evenings and during the holidays but she never complained, instead
she encouraged me to forge ahead. Although I worked very hard, the time that I have taken
to complete this study is owed to her. One disadvantage is that being a part-time student
for example, in my case, there is almost no opportunity to meet other students from UP in
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University of Pretoria etd – Charema, J (2004)
order to discuss and share ideas. However, I had to travel long distances in order to meet
some UP students but all of them were studying for a master’s degree. Most of the students
are Unisa students, with whom I shared ideas, success stories and difficulties.
The
demands of UP and Unisa are totally different, and at one point I thought I made a mistake,
I should have enrolled with Unisa which is less demanding. However, I like to take up
challenges and to produce quality work and also to study with universities of good
reputation. Indeed studying with the University of Pretoria is very challenging and at the
same time satisfying.
---oooOooo---
— 239 —
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