Aussie Educator

Hearing Impairment

Having a hearing loss [impairment] means that a child has lost some hearing in one or both ears. Hearing impairments are described according to how much hearing has been lost. Loss is usually explained as mild, moderate, moderate to severe, severe or profound.
Deafness is another name for profound hearing loss. However, people who call themselves ‘Deaf’ usually are identifying themselves as members of the Deaf Community. This means that they use Auslan [Australian Sign Language] as their first language. Not all people with a severe or profound hearing loss use Auslan.
Conductive hearing loss happens when there is some block to the transfer of sound from the outer ear to the inner ear [cochlea]. In some types of conductive loss, hearing levels may change gradually over time or they may change from day to day. Middle ear infections cause conductive hearing loss.
Sensorineural hearing loss happens when there is damage to the inner ear [cochlea] or to the auditory [hearing] nerve

Inclusion is the preferred educational option. School systems make every effort to do this. If it is not possible, they use either special classes or special schools with curriculum and staffing modifications. There are two approaches, one based on the use of signing and the other using an oral approach.

This page looks at associations, selected educational sites, children’s sites, parent sites, government bodies, cued speech, hearing information, magazines, journals, resources, hearing technology and other information.

The Special Education Resources page provides further options. Check the Auslan page for information on signing.


Australian Sites

  • Better Hearing Australia
    Originally Victorian, now national.
  • Deaf Australia
    ‘National peak organisation for Deaf people in Australia. It represents the views of Deaf people who use Auslan [Australian Sign Language]’.
  • Deafness Forum
    ‘Exists to improve the quality of life for Australians who are Deaf, have a hearing impairment or have a chronic disorder of the ear’.
  • Deaf Sports Australia
    ‘Vibrant organisation focussed on facilitating the access of deaf and hard of hearing people to the best sporting opportunities available in Australia’.
  • Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind
    One of Australia’s educators for children with special hearing needs.

State Sites

International Sites

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Education Sites

Check other relevant state/territory links on the main Special Education page.

Selected Schools & Teaching Centres

  • Aurora School [Vic.]
    Early intervention; DeafBlind Education programs.
  • Centre for Hearing Impaired - Adelaide High School
    ‘Students enrolled in the Centre have access to all curriculum offerings and are offered support by trained Teachers of the deaf or support staff’.
  • Cora Barclay Centre,
    ‘In 1989, the Centre became a therapy centre with a focus on training parents to teach their children to listen and speak using the auditory approach’.
  • deafConnectED
    ’The only specialist centre providing advice to the Vocational Education and Training [VET] sector and plays a key role in informing government policy’. Melbourne Polytechnic, Victoria.
  • Mayfield St Dominic’s Centre for Hearing Impaired
    Catholic Schools Office Maitland-Newcastle. ‘Provides an education of excellence for children who are deaf and hearing impaired’.
  • School of Special Educational Needs : Sensory [WA]
    ‘Providing educational support for children with vision impairment and/or hearing loss’.
  • Schools for Deaf and Hearing Impaired Children
    Aussie Deaf Kids. ‘Find a school with a support unit or special facilities for deaf children in your state or territory’.
  • Taralye
    ‘An internationally recognised early intervention centre that has provided inclusive oral language programs for children with hearing loss and their families in Victoria’.
  • Updated ! The Shepherd Centre
    Internationally renowned school for children from 0-6 with hearing difficulty. Dominantly oral approach to teaching with partially impaired children.
  • School of Special Educational Needs: Sensory
    ‘Providing educational support for children with vision impairment and/or hearing loss’.

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Hearing Technology

Cued Speech

Hearing Technology

Cochlear Implants

Hearing Aids

  • New ! Everything You Should Know About Hearing Aids
    ‘Designed to help consumers learn about the wide variety of hearing aids and related products on the market today; latest innovations; tips for shopping for hearing and assistive learning devices’.
  • Hearing aids Buying Guide
    ‘Which is best for you ? Find out what to consider when choosing a hearing aid’. Choice Magazine, Australia.
  • National Hearing Care
    ‘Hearing aids are complicated technical instruments tailored to the individual client’s needs. There are many different types and styles of hearing aids’. Australian.

Other Sites

  • Captioned Telephone
    ‘The captioned telephone works like any other phone with one important difference : It shows you every word the other party says throughout the conversation’.
  • Closed Captioning FAQ
    An overview to “technical stuff”.
  • Conexu Foundation
    ‘We provide and facilitate services or solutions for people who are communication impaired, Deaf or hard of hearing’.
  • Media Access Australia [Captioning]
    ‘Provides information and applies technological solutions to media access issues, including captioning’.
  • National Relay Service
    ‘Phone solution for people who are deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment’.
  • Techfinder
    ‘Information on communication technologies for people who are Deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired’.
  • Updated ! Technology Access Program
    Information Resources section includes ‘papers, references, tutorials, presentation slides, conference proceedings and other information’.
  • Using Captions to Support Literacy
    Overview and links to a range of information sources and resources.

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Children’s Sites

Sites designed for children of all ages.

  • Updated ! Oticon
    School, Leisure activities, home, Teen solution, more.

Hearing Information

Information about ears & diseases and conditions related to loss of hearing.

  • About the Ear
    Anatomy of the ear, sound measurement, causes of hearing loss, related health issues.
  • How we Hear
    Information, diagram, links to related areas.
  • Swimmer’s Ear [Otitis Externa]
    Better Health, Victoria. Symptoms, causes, complications, diagnosis, treatment, prevention, more.
  • The Interactive Ear
    Interactive hearing process presentation. A second link, but with a different emphasis, can be found at this HEARnet page.
  • Tinnitus
    What it is, symptoms, causes, diagnosis, treatments, masking techniques, self-help, more. MyDr, Australia.

Parental Involvement, Information & Support


Resources for Professionals

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Other Information

Australian Sites

  • Aussie Deaf Kids
    ‘Online support and resources for parents of hard of hearing and deaf children living in Australia’.
  • Deaf Children Australia
    ‘Information, advocacy, support services and educational resources that respond to the needs of these children and their families’.

Government Agencies & Bodies

State and federal and both agencies and government-related groups.

  • Australian Hearing
    ‘We provide a full range of hearing services for children and young people up to the age of 21, eligible adults and aged pensioners, and most war veterans’. Their Get Help page is worth checking.
  • Hearing Services Program
    Department of Health, Australia. Hearing Information, Available Services, For Hearing Professionals.
  • National Acoustic Laboratories
    ‘Undertakes scientific investigations into hearing, hearing habilitation and rehabilitation, and the prevention of hearing loss. The research division of Australian Hearing’.

International Sites

Magazines & Journals

For all educational journals, see the Education Journals page.

  • Deaf Today
    ‘Bringing you the news daily from A to Z from around the world’. Includes archives.
  • Hearing Health Magazine
    News, current issue, archive, advice.
  • Sea Hear
    BBC. Video, message board, latest news, other information. Access a print version.

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1. Children with hearing loss; Child and Youth Health, 26 Nov. 2014. Web. 23 July 2015. Parenting and Child Health - Children with hearing loss.

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