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School ImageGetting in contact with your Disability Resource Center is one of the important things you can do to survive your first year in college with a hearing loss. Contact your center as early as possible so you can get a clear idea of what you need to turn in as far as documentation, what your college is already set up to provide, and what you need to do in order to coordinate your accommodations.
My experience arranging my accommodations was a very easy one. I emailed the center with the following:
  • a request to schedule an appointment
  • an outline of my hearing loss
  • a description of the accommodations that I had received in high school
  • questions about what paperwork I needed to provide and what accommodations were already in place at the university
The day of my appointment, I turned in my audiogram and briefly reiterated the content of my email to my counselor. She asked what kind of accommodations I would like to receive and I asked for a notetaker. Easy as pie, she added me to the list of students eligible for note takers. When the semester began, all my professors sent around an email asking for students to volunteer to be notetakers and for everyone who needed a notetaker to respond to the email as well. Everyday after class my note takers send me their notes, so in class I can focus on hearing and understanding the professor rather than writing notes to later jog my memory.
Other accommodations you might be able to receive are:
  • Stenographer
  • Interpreter
  • Telecoil Loops
  • FM System

Work with your counselor to figure out what you need to do to get your accommodation.

If you have a system with a Mini Mic, an easy built in accommodation you can take advantage of is the Mini Microphone! All you need to do is bring the Mini Mic to your professor at the beginning of each class and have them clip it to their shirt. You can read about my first experience using a Mini Mic in class here.
For further detail, please reference HearingLoss.org’s extensive document that outlines this process in great detail: Get the Most Out of College.

Marilyn Flood