How can we help you? If you have questions
about our program, contact us at Voice (707) 256-7332 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
for the Deaf or Hard of Hearing
being able to access spoken language may…
for Working with Deaf or Hard of Hearing Applicants or Employees
An informational interview should be as close to a real interview
as possible. Please follow your normal procedure so that the Deaf or Disabled
Individual will get a real understanding of what a formal interview is like.
If you can provide some company literature before the interview,
this will help the applicants become more familiar with the company, the
department names, products.
Please provide a written itinerary of what people will be
interviewing them, their names, titles and times they will be meeting each.
Please let your receptionist know that you are expecting a Deaf
Applicant, so they are not turned away by accident.
Although Workability III provides interpreters for our clients,
some Deaf Applicants may come from outside our program and you may want to
consider providing an interpreter. Check the Interpreting Services Agencies
An internship is a paid or unpaid position of limited length that
gives the Student real work experience.
With job shadowing, a Student is matched up with an employee of a
company in the field that they are studying in. Job shadowing helps the Student
get an idea or what the real job duties are on a daily basis.
Coordination of Services
Exploration information and services, work site adjustments, informational
interviews, and workshops.
Provides individual job
search help to students including resume update, applications and interview
practice, use of special adaptive equipment for employment.
Provides Job Placement
services to job ready students, and follow up to ensure job retention.
Maintains contacts with
Develop work contracts
between applicants and local businesses.
Provide technical and
functional assistance to employers and employees.
Perform task analysis.
Train students about work
rules, team work, productivity, and quality work.
Assist students to
transition to full-time work, independent living skills as related to keeping
Work with other work
experience programs at Ohlone College.
Provide individual task
analysis and training to students in the program.
Train Workability III
clients in BASIC on-the-job employee rules, team work productivity and quality
Provide follow along
services for Workability III students placed in work sites.
Establish and maintain a
connection with referral sources, employers, parents, care providers, and
The paperwork must be filed BEFORE
the first date of hire - see the Work
Opportunity Tax Credit Employer Guide (DE 8722)
on the Employment Development Department website for more information.
California Relay Service
Voice users (800) 735-2922
Using a TTY (Teletypewriter for the Deaf) is similar to using a modem
on the phone. It is not a translation device from voice to text. You must have
a device or call through the California Relay Service (CRS). For more
information about CRS, visit CTAP/DDTP
Accommodations for the Deaf or Hard of Hearing
in the interview and training period
Workability III can offer interpreting services for Deaf and/or
Hard of Hearing clients enrolled in our program for interviews and training
periods at no cost to the employer for up to 90 days from time of hire.
The interpreter will interpret exactly what you say, but because
it is a different language, with its own grammar that is different than
English, it may take a while longer to interpret. The interpreter has to lag
behind what you say a few seconds in order to process the words and the intent.
The interpreters are required by their license to not discuss anything that
occurs while interpreting. Confidentiality is strictly followed.
Captioners in the interview
The Captioners will transcribe exactly what you say. The Captioner
has to lag behind a little from what you in order to process the words and the
intent. The Captioners are required by their license to not discuss anything
that occurs while working. Confidentiality is strictly followed.
Deaf Person is on the job here are some tips
While we are on the job with a student, typically during the first
few days of training, it usually becomes pretty clear what concerns may arise.
We try to look at the situation from all angles, considering the student's
abilities and the nature of what needs to be done.
If the student is comfortable reading and writing English, we try
to set up a system of writing back and forth while we are still there, just so
we can see that everyone involved gets used to it. Also, this allows us to make
suggestions about what is being written and how to make it as clear as
possible. For example, a supervisor might think it is faster to use
abbreviations, but the student may have no idea what they mean. Also, if a
student writes the "gloss" word for something, a boss might not
For many of our students who are not comfortable with written
English, it is more of a challenge. We have to become very creative, while
thinking of all possible daily interactions. Some examples, One student had a
job in which there were several different tasks they would be responsible for
at certain times. I ended up drawing a picture to represent each task,
explaining it, and that way the supervisor could just point to whatever picture
was needed. In some cases we have taught the co workers and supervisors
anywhere from 5 to 10 signs that can be used to represent certain tasks.
Basically, we try to think of any way to aid the student's success on the job
while making things as smooth for the bosses as possible.
We have found in most cases the job sites do not have TTYs
(Teletypewriter for the Deaf). We provide employers with information on how to
get them, but that's up to the company. This is why we try to provide the
students with training using the California
Relay Service, so calling in sick or other similar situations can go
Walkie-Talkies, and Pagers
Another common question that faced by employers is intercom
systems or walkie-talkie type arrangements. Employers don't typically remember
that these systems can't be used with a Deaf person, so we provide information
about vibrating pagers, etc. One employer actually set up a certain path that
she wanted the Deaf Student to walk while moving around the building, so if
someone needed the student, they could walk that path and chances are they
would find him easily.
Information About Accommodations
There are so many different examples. Almost every
"problem" has an accommodation. It's just a matter of finding
employers who are flexible, and willing to step outside the norm. Danny
Navarrete and Narda Mamou have gone to employers to do in-service, "how to
work and interact with Deaf People" sessions. These are very helpful as
well. We also provide brochures, pamphlets, posters, fingerspelling cards, and
a lot of support!
Deaf Applicants or Employees
A Deaf Person is one who, even with a hearing aid, cannot access
the spoken language. Deafness can occur before or after birth by maternal
exposure to viruses that damage or prevent development of the auditory nerve.
Examples of some of the causes could be: Rubella, high fevers, Spinal
Meningitis, Industrial accidents, Medical complications, Ototoxic Drugs
(usually life saving drugs that have adverse side effects), Repeated exposure
to loud noise, Genetically Deaf Family traits. This is not an exhaustive list
there are a myriad of other causes, and usually are not considered important by
most Culturally Deaf People.
A Few Deaf Applicants may use hearing aids. These are usually set
either behind the ear and or are connected to an ear mold that fits directly in
the ear. These devices can add up to 25db to a person's hearing, thereby
contributing to environmental sounds (i.e.. alarm systems, but unfortunately,
also amplifying distortions. It is, therefore, not always beneficial to rely on
only speech when communicating with a Deaf Person. Keep in mind that there will
still be spoken sounds which are not heard. Writing back and forth for short
conversations will reduce misunderstandings. In large group settings you may
need t provide an interpreter.
Hard of Hearing Applicants or Employees
A Hard of Hearing individual is one who, with amplification, may
prefer to use spoken communication or use sign language, amplification,
residual hearing, or speech reading. The causes can be similar to the ones
listed for Deafness.
Some Hard of Hearing Applicants may use hearing aids. These are
usually set either behind the ear and or are connected to an ear mold that fits
directly in the ear. These devices can add up to 25db to a person's hearing,
thereby contributing to some voice reception, but unfortunately, also
amplifying distortions. It is, therefore, beneficial to use a normal tone of
voice when communicating with a Deaf or Hard of Hearing student. Keep in mind
that there will still be spoken sounds which are not heard. Writing back and
forth for short conversations will reduce misunderstandings. In large group
settings you may need to provide an interpreter.
Lip reading Is a skill that some Deaf or Hard of Hearing people
acquire to some extent. Similar to skill with a musical instrument or drawing,
the skill varies widely from individual to individual. For some it is a life
time goal while others may have no desire to pursue it.
A large percentage of the Deaf Applicant or Employees in the
Ohlone College Deaf Studies programs prefer American Sign Language.
The structure of speech causes approximately two thirds of the
sounds either don't show at all the lips or are identical to other sounds. For
example, words such as "bat" and "mad" look the same.
The choice of methods is completely up to the student. It is
considered inappropriate to try to ask a Deaf Person who uses sign, to speak
for a interview. Sign Language Interpreters will be provided for translation
from Sign to Voice and Voice to Sign. If the applicant's preferred method is
communicate Orally, it will be important to articulate clearly without
distraction and at a normal pace. Any exaggeration distorts the patterns the
Deaf or Hard of Hearing person has learned. Deaf or Hard of Hearing people read
facial and body expressions.
Not being able to access spoken language may…
Effect a Deaf or Hard of
Hearing person's English Language skills, But there own language may be intact.
Vary from individual to
individual depending on many factors such as Age of onset of Deafness, Cause,
Duration and Type of the illness. Age of exposure to a visual language. Age of
diagnosis, family involvement, innate skills of the individuals, use of
language in the home.
Effect written English
skills. Because of lack of exposure to a method of accessing the language.
(Visual not Auditory)
Certain speech sounds
(such as the "s") are very difficult to make for the Deaf or Hard of
If a applicant chooses to
speak, and you don't understand ask for clarification, or rephrasing.
Each employer is asked to
make a commitment to the individuals the person encounters in the job site. It
is his or her aim to communicate clearly and to encourage mutual growth through
employer-employee interaction. Deaf applicants depend primarily on visual
clues, effective communication may require time, changing techniques, or
rethinking how everyone can accomplish the same goals.
Suggestions for Working with Deaf or Hard of Hearing Applicants or
To aid the Employer in his or her endeavor to provide the best
working situation for the Deaf Applicant or Employee, the Center for Deaf
Studies has organized the following suggestions.
Because an interpreter is
unable to interpret more than one speaker, it may be necessary during group
discussions to request that only one person speak at a time.
The interpreter is not
permitted to discuss a applicant's progress, attendance, or workplace behavior
with the Employer. These concerns may be directed to the student through the
Job Coach with the interpreter facilitating the communication or the Deaf
Applicant or Employee's Workability Counselor.
It is important to have
the student's attention before speaking. The Deaf Applicant or Employee cannot
hear the usual call to attention. He may need a tap on the shoulder, or wave,
or other signals to catch the student's eye. (If there is a Sign Language
Interpreter present there won't be a need for this.)
Try to maintain eye
contact with the student. Deaf Applicant or Employees, like most people, prefer
the feeling of direct communication. Eye contact establishes this feeling. Even
in the presence of an interpreter, look into the Deaf Person's eyes. The
student will then look at the interpreter only when you are talking and then be
looking at you when they reply through the interpreter.
If you are misunderstood,
try to rephrase a thought rather than repeating the same words. Sometimes
particular combinations of lip movements are very difficult for a student to
lip-read. If the person is not understanding you, try to rephrase the sentence.
The applicant should be
seated to his or her best advantage. Generally this is up to the applicant.
Try to avoid standing with
your back to a window or other light sources. Looking at someone standing in
front of a light source makes it more difficult for the Deaf Applicant or
Employee to follow the conversation. For an Oral Deaf person Lip-reading is
difficult, if not impossible, since the speaker's face is left in shadow.
Notify the interpreter in
advance when you plan to use materials that require special lighting. Since it
is impossible to read Sign Language in the dark, the interpreter must have
advance notice so necessary lighting can be provided.
A brief outline would aid
the interpreter and the student to follow the lecture. It is very helpful to a
Deaf Applicant or Employee to know in advance what will be studied next. The
Interpreter will then have a chance to read ahead and study vocabulary. After
the lecture, the Deaf Applicant or Employee can better organize his or her
Try to present new
vocabulary in advance. If this is impossible, try to write new vocabulary on
the chalkboard or overhead projector since it is difficult, if not impossible,
to lip-read or fingerspell the unfamiliar.
Visual aids are a
tremendous help to Deaf Applicant or Employees. Since vision is a Deaf person's
primary channel to receive information, a teaching aid that the person can see
may help him or her assimilate this information. Make full use of chalkboards,
overhead projectors, films, diagrams, charts, etc.
Try to avoid unnecessary
pacing and speaking while writing on the chalkboard. It is difficult to
lip-read a person in motion and impossible to read from behind. It is
preferable to write or draw on the chalkboard, then face the class and explain
the work. The overhead projector adapts readily to this type of situation.
Slowing the pace of
communication often helps to facilitate comprehension. Speakers tend to quicken
their pace when familiar with the material. In addition, there is an unavoidable
time lag in the presentation when an interpreter is involved. Try to allow a
little extra time for the student to ask or answer questions since the person
has less time to assimilate the material and to respond.
When vital information is
presented, try to make sure the Deaf Applicant or Employee isn't left out.
Write on the chalkboard any changes in class time, examination dates, special
assignments, additional instructions, etc. In lab or studio situations, allow
extra time when pointing out the location of materials, referring to manuals or
texts, etc., since the Deaf Applicant or Employee must look, then return his or
her attention for further instruction.
If the student is and Oral
Deaf person, speak slowly and clearly, enunciating each word, but without
exaggerating or over pronouncing. Although it is necessary to speak slowly and
clearly, exaggeration and overemphasis distorts lip movements, making
lip-reading more difficult. Try to enunciate each word, but without force or
tension. Short sentences are easier to understand than long sentences.
Some Oral and some Deaf
Applicant or Employees who sign use a special service commonly referred to as a
Captioner (or Real-time Captioner). This is a specially trained individual that
transcribes the class lecture simultaneously with a court reporters equipment
and some special software.
For Oral Deaf Applicant or
Employees look directly at the student while speaking. Even a slight turn of
the head can obscure the student's vision, making lip-reading more difficult.
Avoid holding hands and books where they hide your face.