Students Take Part in Deaf Support Summer School

Posted on: 15 July 2011

Twenty deaf and hard of hearing students from all over Ireland attended the 6th annual Deaf Support (DS3) in Third Level Summer School hosted by Trinity College Dublin’s Disability Service.  The summer school gives deaf and hard of hearing students who are about to start their studies at any third level institution in Ireland an opportunity to experience firsthand the various aspects of College life.

Students commonly arrive at third level without any experience of the various services which are available to them in lectures and exams.  Valuable first weeks of classes can be lost while these options are fine-tuned to best support the students needs.  Throughout the course of the two day summer school, students were introduced, through lectures and information sessions, to a range of academic supports including Irish Sign Language (ISL) interpreters, note-takers, ‘stenographers’, assistive listening devices, exam accommodations, and additional academic support options.  Presentations were given by deaf and hard of hearing students who themselves have been there and know what it is like to make the transition from second to third level.

Attendees of the 2011 DS3 summer school.

The success of the DS3 summer school has been credited to the fact that it is run by students for students.  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. The DS3 project is a national project which aims to increase the numbers and retention of deaf and hard of hearing students in third level education in Ireland.

Student testimonials:

The DS3 summer school was a truly great experience and I would recommend it to anyone to build up their confidence for third level.  The lectures and demonstrations were really good.   Nicola Phillips. 1st year QUB.

I attended the summer school last year.   It was a brilliant two days which really prepared me for what to expect when starting college.  I also got to make great friends.  This year I was invited back to talk about the supports I use in college.  I have just finished 1st year at TCD and I’m still learning new ways of doing things from talking to other students. Kerry McGlynn.

I attended the DS3 Summer School in 2006 prior to starting college and found it to be a great experience.  It gave me an opportunity to meet other people in the same circumstance as myself and showed me a wide range of supports I didn’t know would be available to me when I was about to start my course.   What I learned there was invaluable in my transition from school to college – and to my graduation.   This year I was asked to organise the 6th year of the event and I am delighted to have been able to contribute to this learning and social experience for the 2010 pre-entry students.   David Loughrey, TCD Graduate.