All accommodations for hearing disabilities, both academic and non-academic, are determined on an individual basis. Here is a list of some accommodations that students have had Assistive Devices for:
- Doorbell and Telephone Signaling
- Wake Alarming
- Interpreter Services
- Note Takers
Hearing loss affects approximately 16 million Americans. It is a complex condition which runs the gamut from minor to pervasive hearing disability. The varying nature of the condition is reflected by the range of vocabulary utilized to describe hearing loss. "Hearing impaired" is a general term which can encompass any type of hearing difficulty. "Hard of hearing" signifies hearing that is defective but functional, and "deafness" indicates that perceivable sounds have no meaning for general life purposes. Of the 16 million Americans who are hearing impaired, it has been estimated that 2 million are deaf.
Hearing impairment also has a wide variety of onsets and causes. Hearing loss can occur pre-lingually, post-lingually, or pre-vocationally (after early childhood but before age 19). In addition, hearing loss can originate in different ways. For instance, hearing loss is considered conductive when it is caused by diseases or obstructions in the outer or middle ear. Hearing loss is sensori-motor when it results from damage to sensory hair cells of the inner ear or nerves that supply it, and such hearing loss can range from mild to profound deafness. Problems of the outer ear or middle and inner ear are considered mixed hearing loss, and central hearing loss results from damage or impairment to nerves or nuclei of the central nervous system, the brain, or pathways to the brain.
We hope that this very brief overview serves to highlight that hearing disability defies easy categorization. Individuals with hearing loss vary widely regarding the extent of the disability, as well as its onset and causation. This diversity is further reflected in the varying ways in which individuals adapt to hearing loss. Consequently, Haverford provides accommodations for hearing disabled students based on the individual's particular needs, rather then via an over-arching institutional policy.
Sources: "Deafness, A Fact Sheet", Gaulluadet College; and "Hearing Impaired Students in Postsecondary Education"", the National Association of the Deaf; HEATH Resource Center, 1982.