Access for Deaf and hearing impaired students

Audiovisual resources have become integral to the classroom. A high percentage of these materials are used to support the curriculum, yet the barriers to Deaf and hearing impaired students this presents is not being adequately addressed by all states and systems. With 83% of all Deaf and hearing impaired students  attending mainstream schools, captioned access to multimedia resources is an issue that must be addressed.

Choosing audiovisual resources that have captions easily lowers the barriers to access for students with hearing impairment. Captions have a number of additional benefits for students who are visual learners, have learning disabilities or have a language background other than English.

Educational benefits of captioning

  • Having equitable access can increase independence and assist Deaf or hearing impaired students who might feel isolated.
  • Captions link text to spoken words, boosting literacy, vocabulary and general comprehension for all students.
  • Captions indicate tone of voice and music, adding meaning for students who have trouble hearing.
  • Captions help students with learning disabilities and visual learners by providing an additional way to understand text and reinforcing information presented verbally.
  • With a lot of communication being made through facial expression, captions create meaning and assist comprehension if a character’s face is turned away from the camera.

Our cap that! campaign asks teachers to simply turn on captions in the classroom for improved learning for all students. 

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