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Attention all Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students!

Important information for Leaving Certificate Students.

Posted: 8th January 2016

  DeafHear.ie The Disability Access Route to Education (DARE). 2016

 

Are you are a Deaf or Hard of Hearing student doing your Leaving Certificate this year and hoping to get a place in Third Level education? Now is the time to start getting ready for college!

The Central Applications Office (CAO) processes applications for undergraduate courses in colleges and universities, and applications to the CAO are due by Feb 1st! If you are a Deaf or Hard of Hearing student, you also need to consider what additional supports you might need to help get you the college course that you want!

 

Applying to the Central Applications Office

The CAO is presently accepting applications for Third Level courses, and the deadline for submitting applications is February 1st 2015. The CAO application form includes a section where students can indicate if they have a disability and/or a specific learning difficulty, and if they wish to be considered for the DARE scheme (Disability Access Route to Education) in their college application.

DeafHear.ie The Disability Access Route to Education (DARE) 2016

While it is not necessary to declare if you have a disability or specific learning difficulty, DeafHear strongly encourages Deaf and Hard of Hearing students to declare their hearing loss in their CAO form.

We are aware that many Deaf and Hard of Hearing students don’t do this… and while it does not reduce their chances of getting a place in college, DeafHear has evidence to suggest it could make their college experience more difficult and increase the chances of them dropping out of college. There is also research to show that in recent years the numbers of students with hearing loss who go on to attend Third Level education is actually DROPPING!

In 2015 AHEAD report noted ‘a worrying trend’ that saw the number of Deaf and Hard of Hearing students in Third Level courses dropping by 6% between 2013 and 2014.


Getting Support in College

Part of the reason for the drop in numbers is that Deaf and Hard of Hearing students are not fully utilising the supports that are available to them to access college courses and complete them successfully. For example, DeafHear is aware of a number of cases in recent years where Deaf and Hard of Hearing students got places in colleges, but later dropped out because they found their courses too difficult and stressful. In most of these cases the students had not disclosed their hearing loss on their CAO application or sought support from college access officers until it was too late.

 

Number of Deaf and Hard of Hearing students dropped by 6%

 

Also, many students with hearing loss are not using the supports available from DARE (Disability Route to Education) to get places on the college courses of their choice. A major reason for this is that many students don’t get any supports while at second level schools - figures from the National Council for Special Education indicate that up to half of all Deaf and Hard of Hearing students in second level education are NOT receiving any additional or specialist educational supports. Many of these students may believe that they won’t need any additional supports at college...but Third Level education is very different from a school environment. Large lecture theatres and a multitude of lecturers and tutors means that learning in a Third Level college is frequently more challenging for a Deaf or Hard of Hearing student.

Our advice is to apply for all the supports available! If you find out that you don’t need them, no harm done!

 

DARE is a college and university scheme which offers places on courses on a reduced points basis to school leavers with disabilities

 

What is DARE?

The Disability Access Route to Education (DARE) is a college and university scheme which offers places on courses on a reduced points basis to school leavers under 23 years of age with disabilities who have completed the Leaving Certificate. The DARE scheme was set up to help increase the number of students with disabilites at Third Level, as evidence shows that disability can have a negative effect on how well a student does at school.

Research shows that this is certainly true for students with hearing loss, and again, DeafHear encourages Deaf and Hard of Hearing students to avail of this scheme if they are applying to the CAO. Typically, students who apply and are eligible for the DARE scheme may be offered places on courses where they have 15-20 points less than the usual minimum points requirement for the course.

You can find out more about DARE and how to apply by attending one of their advice clinics on Saturday January 16th. They are venues all around the country, so there should be one near you! IMPORTANT: You must complete your DARE application by March 1st.

 

DeafHear.ie The Disability Access Route to Education (DARE) 2016


Communication Supports in Third Level

There are three common access supports provided to Deaf and Hard of Hearing students in Third Level education. These are: Irish Sign Language (ISL) interpreters may be provided for a student whose first language is ISL; note takers who assist by taking notes for a student, and ‘captioners’, who type on a laptop screen what is being said in a lecture or tutorial. A student who has indicated that they have a disability on their CAO form will be contacted by the Access Office of the college to assess their support and access needs.


Not sure what to do?

If you are a Deaf or Hard of Hearing Leaving Certificate student and you are unsure about what to do next, we recommend that you talk to your parents, teachers or guidance counsellor. If you still have questions, please feel free to contact your local DeafHear Resource Centre and we will do our best to get you the information you need.

 

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Related to this story…

Numbers of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students at Third Level declines.
Posted: March 2015

A recent AHEAD report has highlighted an alarming drop in the numbers of Deaf and Hard of Hearing students attending full-time courses in Third Level colleges. Read On…

DeafHear.ie Numbers of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students at Third Level declines.

STORY OF THE MONTH:
Posted: November 2014

A student with hearing loss tells us about her experience in third level education.
The story is timely: recently the Higher Educatiion Authority acknowledged that the targets for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students in third level education have not been reached. Read On…

DeafHear.ie SOTM November 2014: Ciara?s Story

More information on DARE here: accesscollege.ie/dare

Check out details of AHEAD’s Better Options College Fair on November 24th here: www.ahead.ie/betteroptions

If you are concerned about hearing loss and would like to talk to someone, contact your local DeafHear Resource Centre. (view)

 

 

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more...Hearing loss costs an estimated €2.2bn every year in Ireland.

 

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