The term ‘deaf’ covers a very broad spectrum of hearing loss; ranging from mild, severe or profound, along with differing communication needs. Deaf people may wear hearing aids or have a cochlear implant; this can help some understanding of speech or environmental sounds. However, hearing aids and cochlear implants can only assist hearing, they cannot restore normal hearing.
Some deaf students may rely on lipreading and speech to communicate, others may use British Sign Language (BSL), Sign Supported English (SSE), a lipspeaker, use captioning or a notetaker. At times students may choose to use a combination of support, depending on their individual communication needs and the learning environment.
All deaf and hard of hearing students have individual needs, it is essential to check with the student which strategies they find most appropriate for their learning.
Good Practice Guide: Working with Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students