Media Advisory: New Resources Available for Deaf Students During COVID-19

Published on April 7, 2020

AUSTIN, Texas — Parents and educators can make online learning accessible for deaf and hard of hearing students during the COVID-19 pandemic with new online resources from the National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes at the College of Education at The University of Texas at Austin.

WHERE: Online:

MEDIA: Stephanie W. Cawthon, Ph.D., a professor at The University of Texas at Austin and director of the National Deaf Center, is available for interviews about making online education accessible for deaf, hard of hearing, and disabled students. Contact directly: [email protected].

BACKGROUND: In the rush to move classes online during the COVID-19 pandemic, deaf, hard of hearing, and other students who need special accommodations are at risk. With its commitment to close educational and employment gaps for deaf people, the National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes has customized resources for deaf students and their families, as well as for educators and service providers at colleges, high schools, and vocational rehabilitation agencies who are struggling to make online learning accessible and equitable.

New multilingual resources include:

Research shows there are over 200,000 deaf and hard of hearing students enrolled in U.S. colleges and universities. Common accommodations, such as video captions, benefit everyone — including fluent English users, students with ADD/ADHD or learning disabilities, English as Second Language users, and more. Only about half of deaf college students file documentation or request accommodations from their institutions and, when they do ask for access guaranteed by law, their needs are frequently unmet.

“This is a critical matter of equity and access for hundreds of thousands of deaf students in the United States. Online classrooms are not automatically accessible. There must be an intentional effort to provide access, accommodate needs, and adjust our new learning environments to serve all students equally,” said Stephanie W. Cawthon, Ph.D., director of the National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes and professor at The University of Texas at Austin College of Education.

The National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes is a technical assistance and dissemination center federally funded by the Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs and Rehabilitation Services Administration to provide evidence-based strategies at the local, state and national levels. The National Deaf Center is located at The University of Texas at Austin College of Education.

Save This
ClosePlease loginn
Tags: coronavirus, COVID-19

Other News Items

A white person with long brown hair and a bipoc with a brown afro hair looking at the same spot.
December 7, 2023
All News
...Disability service professionals (DSPs) can play a vital role in helping deaf students access the testing accommodations they need. DSPs can work with students to identify their individual needs, advocate for those needs to be met, and provide them with information and support throughout the testing process....
December 1, 2023
...At the National Deaf Center, we are committed to empowering all deaf people and ensuring they have equal access to opportunities in education, employment, and beyond. To continue our mission of breaking down barriers and promoting inclusivity, we need your valuable feedback....
November 28, 2023
Conferences and Events
...NDC was thrilled to attend this year’s Southeast Regional Institute on Deafness (SERID) conference held in Charlotte, NC, from October 26th to 29th. The conference featured a series of workshops and networking opportunities focused on collaboration, community engagement, and program development....

Need Help?

Fill out this form to get help from the NDC team.  Can’t see the form below? Click here to contact the NDC team.