University of Edinburgh

Music and Cochlear Implants in the Early Years

Presented on Thursday, 15th September 2016


In the first few years of life it is important that children learn listening and language skills. While cochlear implant speech processors are primarily designed to give access to sounds related to speech, many cochlear implant recipients are successfully enjoying music. Music is a fun and motivational way of engaging children in listening skills. Research is showing that music assists with early listening development and emotional wellbeing. It can be linked to literacy, phonological awareness, language, speech and communication skills.

This course looked at how and when music can be beneficial with cochlear implant users (or hearing aid users) as well as giving practical goals, activities and suggestions using a range of materials and resources.

Participants said:

"Philosophy and science behind use of music to enhance listening/language skills. Also, resources - great to have practical exposure to these."

"Practical sessions and science of CIs."


Target Audience

Teachers of the deaf, mainstream teachers, speech & language therapists, support staff, early years workers, parents; those working with pre-school/early primary school-aged children who are cochlear implant users or hearing aid users.


Janette Joyce, Jane Gallacher, Carolyn McMillan, Agnes Allen, Scottish Cochlear Implant Programme


10.30am Music and CIs - the Science!

11am Music and ... Phonological Awareness/Emotion

11.20am Developing Speech and Vocabulary with Music

11.45am Music and ... Literacy

12.30pm LUNCH and Sneak Peek Resources

1.15pm Baby Beats

1.45pm The Musical Journey

2.15pm Resources Overview

2.30pm Practical Suggestions - what do you use?

3pm Feedback to Participants (Outcomes)

3.30pm Plenary