From: Meg Osterby <megosterby**At_Symbol_Here**GMAIL.COM>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Deaf/Hearing Impaired Chemistry Instructor question
Date: Sun, 22 Sep 2019 22:16:08 -0500
Reply-To: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**PRINCETON.EDU>
Message-ID: 5d8838f7.1c69fb81.abf6a.1847**At_Symbol_Here**


Tips for Communicating with the Hearing Impaired

When one has a loss of hearing, people assume that a hearing aid is all that is needed. With a hearing aid, the person should hear normally (they don't). People also assume that if you can't hear you can lip-read and that it is easy and normal. Hearing abilities vary greatly. The use of multiple communication aids must be relied upon, including lip-reading to obtain maximum understanding. Here are some ways to initially approach the hearing impaired person to help ease the communication process.

Always speak clearly and naturally. This means:

  • Do not shout.
  • Speak slowly.
  • Do not speak so slowly that it disrupts the natural rhythm of speech.
  • Open your mouth.
  • Speak each and every syllable.
  • Do not over exaggerate.

Rephrase words that are misunderstood.. This means:

  • Certain sounds may be missed because they are outside the range of hearing or spoken too fast.
  • Repeat the word the first time.
  • If that fails, do not repeat the same word, but rephrase the sentence trying to use a different word if possible. For example, "Do you want to go to the show?" Instead, "The movies are on tonight, what would you like to go see?"

Attract the listener's attention before you begin speaking.

  • Use the standard attention getting device, "mom, dad, honey, John, etc."
  • If they are not close enough to understand, move towards them. The person that initiates the conversation is the one that should move toward the other speaker.
  • Be as close to the listener as possible.
  • Never try to carry on a conversation from the next room. It is rarely successful
  • As you close the distance, know that good speaking distance is within 10 feet.
  • Face the listener.
  • Have light on your face not on hearing impaired's face.
  • Do not hide your mouth while talking, for instance, smoking, chewing, or your hand on your face.
  • Turn off or decrease competing noise. For instance, as you enter a room to talk to the hearing impaired, close the door, close the window, or close the drapes.
  • Whoever is closest to the TV or radio should automatically turn it down.

=B7        Use facial expressions

  • Use gestures to help the communication process by swinging your hands around, but not so wildly that it is distracting.


I had a hearing impaired assistant in chem lab for several years, and these points, printed and handed out to students, as well as repeatedly discussed during lab instructions and posted around the lab helped a lot. Like safety instruction, these directions had to be frequently repeated to be effective with all students.


Meg Osterby
W831 County Road K
Stoddard, WI 54658
414-539-1543 (cell)
608-788-7951 (home)
"It's better to be careful 100 times than to be killed once." Mark Twain


From: Melinda Box
Sent: Thursday, September 19, 2019 11:20 AM
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Deaf/Hearing Impaired Chemistry Instructor question




I am checking in to see if any of you all might be willing to share experiences and/or policies and precedents for a deaf or hearing impaired teaching assistant working in Chemistry lab instruction.


Any and all contributions will be so appreciated,


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