Disability Resource Center

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Deaf and Hard of Hearing Student Handbook

Dear Student,

Welcome to the Disability Resource Center (DRC)! The DRC is pleased to assist you in achieving your educational and vocational goals. The DRC will help ensure you have equal access to all services, classes, and events at USU. We provide a variety of services tailored to meet the needs of Deaf and Hard of Hearing students. A DRC counselor will work with you to create an individualized communication plan designed to allow full participation in all aspects of University life.


All students must meet USU admissions standards. Qualified applicants will not be denied admission solely on the basis of a disability. It is not necessary, nor recommended, that students disclose their disability in the application process. Once admitted, students with disabilities requiring accommodations must contact the DRC and complete the application process.


The Disability Resource Center takes a flexible approach to documentation requirements for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students, recognizing each student's unique circumstances. Current documentation may be requested to help us determine appropriate accommodations. Qualified professions such as physicians and/or audiologists (impartial and non-related) must provide their name, title, and credentials.

Confidentiality of Disability and Personal Related Information

The DRC is committed to ensuring that all information and communication pertaining to a student's disability is confidentual. The DRC will only share disability documentation with academic departments or instructors in order to advocate for an appropriate service or accommodation.

In accordance with the RID/Utah Code of Professional Conduct, interpreters keep all assignment related information strictly confidential. The DRC takes a collaborative team approach in providing the best possible services. Work related information may be shared within the D/HH services team and with other campus staff on a “need to know basis" in order to improve the quality of services.


Accommodations are determined when the DRC counselor and the student meet to discuss the student's needs. Primarily, these are based on the documentation received. While this is not an exhaustive list, accommodations for a Deaf or Hard of Hearing student may include:

  • Interpreter (live or via VRI) or Transcription
  • Note taker
  • Preferred seating
  • Visual aids
  • Copies of PowerPoint slides in advance
  • Speaker repeating the questions other students ask in the class
  • Assistive Listening Device (ALD) such as an FM system

Students seeking communication access via transcription, sign language interpreters, or CART services should meet with the Deaf Services Coordinator several weeks prior to the beginning of the semester to discuss their needs. Requests are considered in order of submission. Every effort is made to accommodate student preferences, however, requests received less than two weeks before classes start are much more difficult to fill.

The DRC will provide services in accordance with state and federal law. Every effort will be made to locate a qualified interpreter or transcriber. If one is not available, you will be notified and given the opportunity to meet with your DRC counselor to discuss alternate forms of accommodation.

** USU has the technology to provide certified interpreters via Video Remote Interpreting (VRI) in the event that a local qualified interpreter is not available.**

Interpreter/transcriber scheduling:

Student preference for specific interpreters is considered along with these considerations:

  • Interpreter/Transcriber availability and skill level
  • Registration date (i.e. earlier reqests recieve first consideration)
  • Low vs. high demand times
  • Course content
  • Student class standing
  • Academic department scheduling issues
  • Availability of alternative course sections
  • Academic vs. nonacademic content
  • Other considerations made on a case by case basis with the involvement of the student

Student Responsibilities

Students receiving DRC services maintain the same responsibility for academic standards, attendance, participation, and behavior as is required of all students by the department/university. Students reciving interpreting/transcribing must also:

  • Self-identify to the DRC .
  • Submit academic accommodation requests with complete schedule to the DRC during priority registration (or at least 2 weeks prior to the first day of classes).
  • Make all requests for Interpreting/Transcribing services in writing directly to the DRC Counselor.
  • Notify the DRC immediately of any schedule changes including class cancellations as well as room or time changes.
  • When missing a class please inform the interpreter[s]/transcriber[s] or your DRC Counselor. Missing three consecutive classes without notification requires an appointment with the DRC counselor to discuss continuation of services.
  • Arrive on time. The interpreter/transcriber is not responsible to wait beyond 15 minutes for a 50-minute class and 20 minutes for longer classes. If cilrcumstances beyond your control arise and you need the interpreter/transcriber to wait longer, please notify,the interpreter/transcriber or your DRC counselor.
  • Immediately report any accommodations that do not meet your needs to your DRC counselor so adjustments can be made.
  • Discuss problems with your interpreter/transcriber or note taker with your DRC counselor.
  • Submit requests for additional accommodations (i.e.: interpreter or transcriber for special events such as special speakers, extra class sessions, or study groupsas soon as you know you need them). At least a 24-hour notice is required. Should an interpreter be requested for a cultural event such as a play, a 2-week notice is appreciated. Every effort is made to fill all requests and to provide a back-up mode of communication when an interpreter is not available.
  • Work out the details of voice interpreted presentations with your interpreter in advance
  • Interpreters are not responsible to provide information missed while the student is not paying attention i.e. falling asleep, reading newspaper, or text messaging during class.
  • Not use the interpreter/transcriber/note taker as a substitute for class attendance.
  • Read and understand the D/HH and DRC Student Handbooks.