People who are deaf or hard of hearing experience a higher level of unemployment and under employment. In today's world, many products have been created to support interaction between deaf and non-deaf individuals. Work in accessible technology and other computing fields is a lucrative career opportunity, potentially for everyone. Having strong computing skills is essential because of the role of computers in almost every field.
Much can be done to make a workspace more accessible to and inclusive of colleagues who are deaf or hard of hearing. Universal design can provide a framework for doing so by underpinning practices that can be applied proactively to make a welcoming and environment and to ensure that appropriate accommodations are available specific individuals.
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.