Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Health and Rehabilitation Sciences


Dr. Mary Beth Jennings

Second Advisor

Dr. Lynn Shaw


This study explores the lived experience of hearing aid use and non-use of older individuals with hearing loss. A narrative approach was used to gain an in-depth understanding of the meaning and contextual issues that impact upon the adaptation process of older adults and their transitions in using hearing devices. Four women over the age of sixty took part in two face-to-face interviews. All of these women were identified as being consistent hearing aid users. Wengraf s biographic-narrative-interview guiding framework was used to gather data in this study. Data were analyzed both holistically and thematically from a phenomenological perspective to identify the meaning and essence of the participants’ experience with hearing aids and hearing loss. Results revealed an overarching theme of meaningful participation in life situations and events that was linked to purposeful use and non-use of hearing aids. Barriers and facilitators related to participation, which in turn affect hearing aid use and acceptance, were uncovered. The results of this study have implications for audiologic research, practice, and audiologist education.



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