You are here

Deaf, deafened and hearing loss

According to figures from Action on Hearing Loss, it is estimated that one sixth of the UK population has hearing loss which is more than 12 million people, of which 900,000 have severe or profound hearing impairment. 3.7 million people are of working age. They estimate that 24,000 people in the UK use British Sign Language (BSL) as their main language.

Making webinars accessible for deaf learners webinar

The Education and Training Foundation working with the National Deaf Children's Society delivered a one hour Making webinars accessible for deaf learners webinar to help you understand the main barriers to accessing webinars for deaf learners and how these can be overcome using tech solutions and adjustments to teaching. You'll also have the opportunity to put questions to experts in deaf education.

NDCS use of term 'deaf' to describe learners with all levels of deafness from mild to profound. 

Meeting the needs of deaf learners remotely

The National Deaf Children's Society has published a blog, Remote learning in further education and what this means for deaf young people and downloadable guidance for further education providers on meeting the needs of deaf learners. The blog focuses on addressing issues that arise through learning remotely and the guidance covers a range of topics such as face masks, emotional wellbeing and room layouts.

The National Deaf Children's Society are really keen to hear from FE professionals about the issues their deaf students face when using online learning providers or accessing online assessments. Please email:  with any examples.

Stepping up - quality standards

Stepping up - quality standards is a resource created by the National Deaf Children's Society, on behalf of the Education and Training Foundation. The guide details six quality standards to support greater consistency of provision and to improve outcomes for deaf young people. The standards apply to young people with all levels of deafness, including those without Education, Health and Care Plans and are relevant to all providers across the FE sector. 

Image of the Stepping Up document

Hearing impairment resource guide

An image of the Hearing impairment resource guide

The Hearing impairment resource guide aims to provide teachers and trainers in the FE sector with an understanding of the potential impact of hearing impairment on learning and how to better support learners to achieve their full potential. The resource explores the signs, symptoms, behaviours and provides top tips for adapting communication, teaching strategies and environment to enable learners to thrive. 

The guide is deigned to be used alongside the ETF hearing loss awareness course to help you gain skills and knowledge to support your learners which the ETF offer as an in-house course. A taster session for this course is freely available online. 


Resources to support transition, learning and achievement

The National Deaf Children's Society have a wide range of free resources for education who support deaf young people in post-14 education including:

  • Next steps: Supporting successful transitions into post-16 education and employment for deaf young people in England
  • Supporting the achievement of deaf young people in further education
  • Supporting the achievement of deaf young people on apprenticeships
  • Creating good listening conditions for learning in education
Promoting inclusion and deaf awareness

City College Norwich (CCN), Centre for Excellence in SEND with the lead on Community, has been promoting inclusion and deaf awareness by giving staff training to enable them to say short phrases using British Sign Language (BSL). To give you an insight into what CCN have been doing we've created a promoting inclusion and deaf awareness page showing some of the phrases staff have been learning.

Quick links

Action on hearing loss - Information and advice including assistive technology.

British Deaf Association - Raising awareness of sign language, BSL Charter.

The Communication Trust - offers information and resources to support the teaching and learning of people who struggle to communicate because they have speech, language and communication needs.

National Deaf Children's Society -  The National Deaf Children’s Society is the leading charity dedicated to creating a world without barriers for deaf children and young people.

National Sensory Impairment Partnership (NatSIP) - NatSIP is a partnership of organisations working together to improve outcomes for children and young people with sensory impairment. The NatSIP website offers access to a wealth of sensory impairment resources, most of which are freely available.

Royal Deaf Association - a range of services including employment, communication services, and information, advice and guidance.


Related Resources

Image of Stepping up Quality standards for young deaf learners

Stepping up quality standards for young deaf learners

A photo of a staff member using British Sign Language to communicate

Promoting inclusion and deaf awareness

An image of a completed personal profile from the resource Personal passport

Personal passport for deaf learners

An image of the Supporting deaf young people through transition resource

Supporting deaf young people through transition

Image of the Supporting achievement of deaf young people in FE resource

Supporting achievement of deaf young people in FE