Deaf Support Summer School Held in TCD

Posted on: 30 July 2010

The 5th annual Deaf Support (DS3) in Third Level Summer School recently hosted twenty deaf and hard of hearing students, the highest number to date to attend the event, in Trinity College Dublin.  The summer school brings together students who are due to start their studies in any of the Irish third level Institution for two days of an insight into college life in order to assist with what is often a very difficult transition period.

The aim of the summer school is to introduce, through lectures and information sessions, the range of academic supports including Irish Sign Language (ISL) interpreters, note-takers, ‘speedtext’, assistive listening devices, exam accommodations, and additional academic support options.  Many students arrive in third level without any experience of the services available to them in lectures and exams and valuable time can be lost in the first weeks of classes while these options are fine-tuned to best support the student.  

The success of the DS3 summer school has been credited to the fact that it is run by students for students.  This year presentations were given by other Deaf and hard of hearing students, Maeve Dermody and Fiona O’Hehir, who shared their experiences of college with those about to start on the same journey.  This year the programme also included a mock lecture given by Dr Patrick Geogheghan from the School of History; a laboratory session in the department of Physiology facilitated by Dr Aine Kelly and Dr Alan Tuffery; and a debate arranged in conjunction with the college Historical Society.  Each session had an individual purpose to demonstrate to students the broad range of teaching styles and encourage them to participate in interactive group work learning.   Outside the classroom setting the Summer School is a key networking event where new students meet peers who often act as their primary support whilst at college.

Student Testimonials:

Meeting other people who experience the same difficulties and are facing the same challenges ahead of them was really brilliant.  Summer School gave me a great insight into what supports I could get and I met some great new friends!

It was cool to hear other students experiences  the good and bad, kind of like a preview!

A truly great experience and I would recommend it to anyone to build up their confidence about starting third level.