5 Ways to Help Your Deaf Student Succeed

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  • So you just started your new school term as a teacher and realized that one of your students is deaf.

    This may seem daunting if you have never experienced it teaching a deaf student before.

    Don’t Panic.

    Now is the time to do a little research and get started on setting up your classroom for success. There are simple ways in which you can help a deaf student learn and grasp concepts just like an ordinary student. Below are five tips that will guide you in helping a student with a hearing impairment.

    Using Captions to Teach

    Almost every student benefits from the use of captions in the class. However, using captions can be the most ideal for deaf students as well as those who use English as their second language. For you to be able to cater to deaf students, consider using captioned multimedia such as online video, DVD, and TV.

    This is because captions provide distinct access to multimedia content. It is worth noting that captions differ depending on the type of language. Captions also relay contextual information to deaf students making it an ideal method of learning. The more significant part is that captions can be used by different types of students, whether impaired or normal.

    Having Captions available to your students will greatly improve their ability to comprehend what you are saying and provide them with a better understanding of the subjects they are learning in class. It can also help to improve reading comprehension in general for students.


    Academic transcription services are crucial as they give deaf students complete access to spoken words in your class. As such, your student can view a real-time transcript using a standard web browser as well as a mobile device.

    There are different types of transcription services that can be crucial for your student such as online and remote transcription.

    Online transcription can be real-time while remote transcription requires a remote connection to be established. During either form of transcription, it is essential to note that troubleshooting may be needed during class sessions.

    As such, always equip yourself with basic troubleshooting techniques that will make the learning of a deaf student smooth and comfortable.

    These resources can also help to assist your student with their homework and give them the ability to take notes more easily.

    Visual Stimulus

    Students who are deaf need visual cues that can help them understand the content you offer in class. Some people may refer to it as speechreading as it helps with auditory stimulus.

    The visual stimulus method was introduced in the 16th century when education was evolving. To a deaf student, using visual stimulus will help them approach learning differently.

    As a teacher, you will note some learning style improvement in the student; the more you expose them to visual stimulus techniques. This method works well with younger students as children are well known for picking up things more quickly with the help of pictures or visual aids.

    Proper classroom arrangement

    In any class, there are always variables where a student who has a hearing impairment should sit in any classroom. Mostly, you should ensure that any deaf student is seated in the front area of the classroom. This will help capitalize on their visual capability in understanding the concepts learned in class.

    Besides that, you should ensure that you are positioned in a place where the student can see your face. Your voice should also not be obstructed. Another thing to note is that the deaf student might prefer a given seat in the classroom. It would be best if you granted them their preferred sitting position as they will foster more interactions with you as well as other students.

    other valuable tips:

    Reduce any noise to the minimum

    Students who are deaf find it hard to concentrate when there are outside noises that can interfere with their hearing aids. Therefore, blocking out the noise in the background is crucial. It can be done by closing doors and windows.

    It is essential to note that although your student may be wearing an assistive hearing device, they might not hear the same way with other regular students. Indeed, reducing the background noise will be a massive contributor to a comfortable life in the classroom. Sometimes, it might be necessary to ensure that the classroom you are using is in an isolated location where learning cannot be easily distracted for your deaf students.

    Teaching students that have a hearing impairment is an amazing opportunity. As such, you should make sure that you use the above tips to enhance their way of learning and understanding. It can be incredibly rewarding to teach students with disabilities as you learn how to adapt your teaching style. With the above five points, learning for them will be easier than you thought.

    Image Credit: help your deaf student succeed by envato.com

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