Jump to content

CI when all testing is not in your Mother tongue


Recommended Posts

The Sunday session for me was very annoying. For some reason, unknown, Google Meet was putting my PC to sleep about every third minute. After rebooting seven times I gave up the unequal struggle and quit the session. I think I heard talk about mapping etc in other than a mother tongue. That issue is very important me me so I have put down some thoughts beginning with a little background.

I'm British by birth, left England when I was in my late 20s and have lived a little bit everywhere Paris, Teheran, Tokyo, Argentina, Brazil and the Mid-West. For the last ten or so years I have lived in the Swiss French part of Switzerland. I  have also been a Swiss national for about 40 years. Where I live we speak French. Ten minutes by car is one direction and everybody speaks a form of German, (Bärndütsch). This tiny but beautiful country has four national languages. To make matters worse there is not a language called Swiss German, though the term exists. What they are are lots of dialects and people who speak one of them may not be able to understand all of the others.

But I digress. Where this is important for me and my hearing issues is I am never tested in my mother tongue and none of the exercises exists in English or, if it does, it is in American. (Remember Churchill: Two people divided by a common language).

Every time I get tested, at some point in the process I have to listen to mono- or poly-syllabic words and repeat them. I get a whole lot wrong because I have hearing issues but I get a lot more wrong because am not able, inherently, to hear part of the word and guess the rest. The person testing me is Swiss German, he and I talk mostly in French, some English and some Hoch Deutsch. The opportunities for mis-communication are many and for most of the time neither of us is speaking in his mother tongue.

This can cause frustration for both patient and professional. In my case I have had, gently, to educate the professional to be open and aware. They are quite used to patients who are either Swiss German or Swiss French. They are not that experienced in dealing with third party nationals.

@Kathy, I am not sure if you are facing some of this. If you are, or anyone else, please feel free to ask me anything either openly or by PM

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • HearPeers Heroes
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I agree that one should be tested in their original born language. I will have to travel 2 hour or 5 hour drive clinic to see an audiologist who speak the language. I am told I could try a local HA audiologist who speak the language just to do the test. I will try that and see. I think they just don' t know how important it is and might make a difference in how much is understood and properly evaluated. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can commiserate with the annoyance of being tested in a foreign language. I get tested in Finnish, which I am still learning and it's really not going well. The only other option the hospital was offering was some tape with UK English. It flashed faster than I could blink and sounded nothing like the English I usually hear. I asked my SO and he confirmed it was too fast for him as well.

(I generally don't do well with fast speech, but that should be a separate matter)

I do get the argument that I am supposed to hear stuff, and not guess, but... it doesn't necessarily work this way. There are phonemes that don't exist in my native language and I have hard time differentiating them. And native speakers are always going to score better in this test, because they will guess without even trying to do so, that's just how brains work.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...