Cued Speech

Supporting Cochlear Implant Users

Experiencing a cued language early in a child’s development will have long-lasting effects on the child’s ability to learn that language auditorily later, when they receive the cochlear implant.  For all children the first four years of life are vital for language acquisition, it may take many months for a clear diagnosis and approval for implant surgery and then there is a further wait before ‘switch on’.  Every day that a child goes without access to language in those early years will add to the overall language delay that then has to be addressed in the already intense rehabilitation pro

Importance of early language acquisition.

All children need to learn language when they are very young because their brains are most sensitive to language when they are babies and toddlers.

Researchers looking at the general population have found that some parents talked to their children very much more than others and that by the time the children were three years old children with chatty parents had vocabulary around twice that of the group which had less input.  This difference in language skills can be seen from infancy and the gap widens with age affecting their literacy and education.

Books about CS

Cover - The Cued Speech Resource Book for Parents of Deaf Children

There are a number of information books written and edited by the leading researchers in the Cued Speech community that may help to answer any questions you may have.    


The Cued Speech Resource Book for Parents of Deaf Children (December 1992)

Authored by Dr. R. Orin Cornett and Mary Elsie Daisey


Cued Speech and Cued Language for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children (March 2010)

Edited by Carol LaSasso, PhD, Kelly Lamar Crain, PhD, Jacqueline Leybaert, PhD


The Cued Speech Association UK

The Forces

Forces Cross



Devon   TQ9 7DJ


Tel: 01803 712853

Training in Cued Speech

There are many  training options  offered by the Cued Speech Association - details are available on the website.

Cued Speech in the context of other language support systems


British Sign Language (BSL)

History of Cued Speech

This document outlines how, when and where CS was created and the aims behind it.

How does it look?

This film shows a story narrated by someone who is cueing while children demonstrate the actions and cue key words from the story.

How does it work?

Put simply, when sounds look the same on the lips (as they are spoken) an accompanying handshape or position will make each lip-pattern look different.  For example the sounds /p/ /b/ and /m/ sound quite different to hearing people, but they are indistinguishable by watching the lips.  So people who rely on lip-reading alone have no way of distinguishing words such as 'baby' and 'maybe' or 'pay', 'bay' and 'may'.  When you use CS each consonant sound has a different accompanying handshape so each sound now looks quite different.  Vowel sounds with confusing lip-patterns are

Description of the system

The name Cued Speech describes a system of 8 handshapes and 4 positions around the face, you cue as you speak.  The combination of these 12 cues and the natural lip patterns of the speaker give a complete visual representation of what is said in real time.  Every sound in every word has a corresponding cue enabling the receiver to see how the words sound.

For deaf children Cued Speech does the job of speech; it is your speech made visible.

It is quick and comparatively easy to learn – the entire system can be shown on one page.


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