My name is James and I am deaf. I use American Sign Language (ASL) as my primary means of communication. With aided hearing and lip-reading, I can communicate fairly well one-on-one, as long as I can see the person's face and lips clearly. I am currently involved in a computer technician internship with a company that provides on-site computer repair, service and set-up.
Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing can benefit from personal devices such as hearing aids and cochlear implants. But these tools don’t totally resolve hearing issues. In addition, individuals who lip read may only understand 30% of what is spoken. Students who are deaf or hard of hearing may use sign language interpreters or real time captioners in class, but instructors can apply the following simple teaching techniques to make their teaching more accessible to students who are deaf or hard of hearing.
Educators tell how Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) provides access to auditory communication for individuals who are deaf.
Professors, students, and IT administrators share the benefits of using captions on videos in postsecondary courses.
Hearing impairments alone generally do not interfere with most computer use. However, alternatives to audio output can assist the computer user who is deaf or hard of hearing. For example, if the sound volume is turned to zero, a computer may flash the menu bar when audio output is normally used. When sound is used on web pages and other electronic media, individuals who are deaf cannot access the content unless captions or transcriptions are also provided.
A speech-to-text service is an accommodation that can be used by a student who is deaf or hard-of-hearing as a way to gain access to spoken or auditory content. With speech-to-text services, a provider listens to a speaker and then produces text for the person who is deaf or hard-of-hearing to read on a computer screen, TV monitor, or projection screen. Speech-to-text service is often called real-time captioning, and the providers are often referred to as captionists or transcribers.
Several resources for ASL signs for science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields are available online. They include sign language dictionaries, which are edited collections of signs, as well as sign language forums, which are communities wherein users contribute their own signs for various terms.
Major STEM-related ASL dictionaries and forums include: