By Andrea Leni / LipreadingMom.com Guest Blogger
College is hard enough to get through on your own, but for people coping with hearing loss, the challenge is even steeper. Although there are helpful technological and scientific advancements to assist with hearing, the solution doesn’t have to involve cost or compensation. There are plenty of helpful tricks for dealing with the environment of lectures, lessons, and quizzes when you have been dealt the hand of hearing loss to give you the best possible shot at success.
As frustrating as hearing loss can be, it’s important to put the setback into perspective as just that: a setback. Your goals in dealing with hearing loss should be finding ways to mediate that loss with clearer, louder audio than may be readily apparent, but that is also readily available. Classrooms of all varieties offer a number of savvy excuses for students to take control of their lectures and their courses if they aren’t absorbing enough information in the classroom, and this is where students suffering from hearing loss can level the playing field.
The Sound of Success
The advent of the online world and mobile file technology has caused classrooms in nearly every college to subvert the standard practice and begin exploring this uncharted territory with incentive. Innovative tools are constantly developed to help students utilize their courses and coursework on the go. While these innovations are not targeted specifically at students coping with hearing loss, they can nevertheless be a great service by allowing you to experience your classroom with the clarity and volume of headphones.
Employing Technology to Help with College
Most introductory college courses are now widely available online, either from the college’s website or from the educational section of iTunes. This is a helpful option for those students who cannot clearly hear the lecture in the classroom, and who need a contained and controlled environment to truly “take in” the given lecture.
If new technological options such as audio files of lectures are not readily offered by your college already, then take advantage of modern technology on your own. Although most students play with the tools of modern technology for the sake of convenience, that convenience can be an incredibly helpful necessity for those students who are hard of hearing. Explain your situation to the professor and ask if you can be permitted to record audio on your own. Being able to absorb a lecture or listen to test instructions through the usage of headphones can make all the difference when hearing loss is getting in the way of your studies.
Hearing loss might not be an everyday occurrence for your fellow students, but it doesn’t have to be an impediment to your learning. Talk with your teachers or teachers’ assistants about having a designated seat in the front of the room if the room is particularly large. Encourage your teachers to write down important points of their lecture in case you cannot hear them on the given day.
It’s important for those students who are suffering from hearing loss to understand that it should be treated as a condition which can be countered when involving themselves in their studies, even if in some occasions there may be special circumstances required in order to cope. Hearing loss does not have to be treated as a detrimental thing that is preventing you from achieving your academic goals.
Andrea Leni is a freelance writer and transcriber in the United States, contributing frequently to online college website such as DegreeJungle.com. In her free time, Andrea enjoys spending time with her two sons, and walking their dog Toby.