The Communication Studies and Services Department (CSS) provides a broad range of support and opportunity for deaf and hard-of-hearing students who want to expand communication skills that will serve them—both during and after college—in educational, professional, community, and other settings.
Whether you seek audiology, speech-language, or cochlear implant services, you can count on CSS faculty and staff to work with you to determine your needs and provide assistance.
All students, whether they choose to use Spoken English or ASL, can benefit from the Communication Studies curriculum. Courses are designed to help students hone their communication skill set and enhance their ability to connect in their personal and professional lives.
The Audiology Center and Speech & Language Center are part of NTID's Communication Studies and Services department, which is located on the third floor of LBJ (Building 60), in the northeast corner of the RIT campus. Once you are on campus, you may enter the north end of the LBJ building (near the cube sculpture) and take the elevator up to the third floor. You will then walk through a set of double doors ahead of you.
The Audiology Center and The Shop, LBJ-3130, will be at the far end of this hallway, on your right. Appointment scheduling and on-call services may be accessed in The Shop.
The Speech & Language Center, LBJ-3225, is located by walking past the Audiology Center, and then through the set of double doors on your right at the very end of the hallway. The Speech & Language Center will be on your immediate left.
NTID's Communication Studies and Services Department provides on-campus audiological services to members of the RIT Community, including students, faculty, staff, NTID alumni, and members of RIT's Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. You may schedule any of the services below using the online request form. The Audiology Center can also be reached by phone at 585-469-2329 (voice or text) or 585-475-6473 (voice only).
Individual Audiological Appointments
Please schedule an appointment for the following audiological services:
Hearing aid programming
Hearing aid evaluations, consultations, and sales
Hearing aid and cochlear implant accessory demos
Hearing aid and cochlear implant troubleshooting
Cochlear implant mappings
Cochlear implant consultations (candidacy evaluations or equipment upgrading)
Listening practice/auditory training
Walk-In Technical Support (see below Audiology Center: The Shop for more information)
On-Call Audiology Support (see below Audiology Center: The Shop for more information)
Appointments for on-campus audiological services as well as ENT and eye examinations (for students only) are scheduled in The Shop at the Audiology Center (LBJ-3130; Phone 585-475-6473 Voice). You may also sign up for services using the online request form.
When arranging an appointment, please have your class/work schedule available. Appointments are popular, so please be sure to book an appointment promptly as needs arise.
Walk-In Technical Support
There is a technician available during The Shop's open business hours throughout the academic year.
The following technical support services can be provided in The Shop on a first-come, first-served basis:
Basic troubleshooting of cochlear implants and hearing aids
Earmold modification and tube replacement
Sale of batteries, testers, and assistive devices
Sale of cochlear implant replacement parts
On-Call Audiology Support
NTID Communication Studies and Services audiologists are available in The Shop for several hours each week to answer your audiological questions. No appointment is necessary. On-call schedules vary each semester and are posted online and outside the Shop window.
In addition to walk-in technical support, on-call audiologists can also provide the following services in The Shop:
Extensive troubleshooting of cochlear implants and hearing aids
Programming of loaner hearing aids
Pairing of accessories to cochlear implants and hearing aids
Impressions for earmolds, ITE hearing aids, custom ear protectors, and swim plugs
For further information about the services offered through the Audiology Center, please contact:
Cochlear implant specialists are conveniently on campus
There are many students with cochlear implants at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), and the numbers are growing. NTID first began serving students with cochlear implants in 1984. Currently, there are over 400 students with cochlear implants on campus.
The Communication Studies and Services Department audiologists and speech-language pathologists offer a wide range of cochlear implant services to students, faculty and staff in the college community.
We look forward to working with you for the following cochlear implant services:
Assistance with upgrades
Please know that appointments tend to fill quickly. If you have an immediate need due to a broken part, we recommend that you place an order for replacement directly through your cochlear implant company. You should then visit us in the Audiology Center, as we may be able to loan you a part while you wait for your replacement to arrive.
For assistance with implant equipment problems outside of clinic hours, please contact your cochlear implant manufacturer directly.
How do I sign up for audiology services?
Come to The Shop on the third floor in the Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) Hall, Bldg. 60, Room 3130 (campus map). Bring your weekly schedule so you can make an appointment with an available audiologist during your free time.
If my hearing aid or cochlear implant breaks, can I get it repaired on campus?
Yes, we can do many repairs on campus. If we can’t make the repair here, we can send your hearing instrument to the manufacturer for repair under warranty, depending on the age of the instrument, or we can talk to you about the cost of getting a repair through NTID.
How do I get a new hearing aid at NTID?
According to law, your most recent hearing test needs to be within the past six months. A current hearing test also ensures that you are fitted with hearing aids that are most appropriate for you. After your hearing test, the audiologist will discuss recommendations with you. You will talk about a variety of options such as hearing aid manufacturer and style, and connectivity options (including Bluetooth). You’ll also discuss whether one or two hearing aids would give you the best result and talk about the process and appointments required for completing the evaluation and getting the hearing aids. The audiologist also will discuss the cost of new hearing aids at NTID.
Is there a charge for audiology services?
Audiology faculty and staff provide services to all registered RIT students, faculty and staff at no charge. For other members of the RIT community (dependents of faculty and staff, members of OSHER, and NTID alumni), there is a $25 fee per service.
What kind of cochlear implant services do you offer?
We offer a variety of cochlear implant services. Cochlear implant candidacy evaluations, mappings, equipment troubleshooting, listening, speechreading and implant upgrade information are available. You can sign up for these services at the Shop on the third floor in the Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) Hall, Bldg. 60, Room 3130. You can also purchase cochlear implant batteries, replacement cords and other accessories at the Shop.
How much does a hearing aid cost at NTID?
Hearing aids vary in cost and are available for purchase from multiple manufacturers. The audiologist will explain the cost of the hearing aid(s) he or she is recommending at the time of the hearing test. When you schedule the hearing aid evaluation, you must pay a deposit which is non-refundable and is applied toward the final cost of the hearing aid(s). The balance of the cost for the hearing aid(s) is due by the last scheduled appointment. The final price is determined largely by the special features that you prefer (customization, noise reduction technology, and directional microphones). We accept cash, check, Tiger Bucks, Visa, Mastercard, Discover, approved Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) payments, and RIT’s Excellus BC/BS health insurance (Blue Point2 POS A).
Can I buy batteries, earmolds, etc. on campus?
Yes, you can! Simply stop by the Shop on the third floor in the Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) Hall #60, Room 3130 during open hours. Please be prepared to pay with cash, check, Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or Tiger Bucks.
Can I borrow an FM from NTID?
Yes, FM units are available for loan free of charge. Stop by the Audiology Center, on the third floor in the Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) Hall #60, Room 3130, to make an appointment to be fit with a unit. You may borrow a unit for the semester or for the full academic year. In some cases, you may borrow an FM unit for your co-op work experience.
When are audiology services available?
The Audiology Center is open year-round, with full clinic services and hours following the academic calendar and reduced hours offered during summer months. Please check Department Hours to view the current schedule.
The Speech & Language Center is located in Lyndon Baines Johnson Hall, Building 60, Room 3225. If you would like to request speech-language instruction, or would like an invitation to join a weekly communication group, you may sign up using the online form (RIT login required). You may also sign up in person in the Speech & Language Center (LBJ-Room 3225) or at the staff assistant’s desk (LBJ-3850).
Services in the Speech & Language Center are:
The Speech & Language Center is the place to come for communication instruction and activities.
The Communication Studies and Services department provides an array of communication-enhancing experiences that are designed to address your needs and requests. Instructional activities take place in the Speech & Language Center, LBJ Room 3225, an exciting student-centered facility created with your needs in mind. The friendly and supportive atmosphere in the Speech & Language Center will allow you to build confidence using spoken communication.
You can schedule weekly appointments for individual speech-language instruction to help you improveyour general communication skills as well as job-related communication skills. You’ll have input into establishing goals, setting priorities, selecting activities and measuring your progress. You’ll also have access to computer software programs and mobile applications that provide visual and auditory feedback during instruction.
You can get instruction and practice in:
Producing sounds that will help improve spoken communication
Improving vocal quality
Using general and technical vocabulary
Improving grammar in speech
Practicing conversational skills
Using communication strategies
Preparing for job interviews and learning interview techniques
Accessing current mobile applications on tablet devices to learn independent practice strategies
NTID Communication Studies and Services speech-language pathologists offer walk-in services in the Speech & Language Center for several hours each week. No appointment is necessary. Walk-in schedules vary each semester and are listed in the Department Hours.
Speech-language services offered during walk-in hours are:
Job interview practice
Practice in making a presentation
Pronunciation and vocabulary instruction
Use of the latest technology for visual feedback and audio/video recordings via tablet applications and PC programs
Tutoring for Communication Studies courses
The CSS Department also hosts several communication groups each week in the Speech & Language Center to provide a place for you to gather informally and discuss various topics including current events, job interview practice, and communication apps and technology.
How many hours per week can I schedule speech-language instruction?
Typically students attend sessions twice a week for 50 minutes each session.
How many semesters can I take speech-language instruction?
Typically students attend for two or three semesters. Near the end of the semester, you and your speech-language instructor will discuss your progress and your personal communication goals. Together you will make a joint decision about continuing services.
How do I sign up for speech-language instruction services?
You can go to the Speech & Language Center (LBJ-Room 3225) or to the staff assistant’s desk (LBJ-3850) and sign-up, or fill out and submit the online form.
How much choice do I have in selecting my speech-language instruction goals and what to work on?
You and your speech-language instructor share responsibility for deciding on goals and activities and setting priorities. We encourage you to take an active role in the learning process.
Is speech-language instruction always one-on-one or is there group instruction?
Generally, speech services are provided in a one-on-one setting. We do also host several communication groups each week in the Speech & Language Center to provide a place for you to gather informally and discuss various topics including current events, job interview practice, and communication apps and technology. Communication groups are open for any student to attend. Weekly attendance for groups is not required and students are invited to drop in and join a group anytime. Current group topics and meeting times are posted on the Speech & Language Center doors in LBJ-3225.
Do I have to pay for speech-language instruction services?
No. There are no fees for individual speech-language instruction, walk-in services or for participation in communication groups hosted in the Speech & Language Center.
What are walk-in services?
You can come to the Speech & Language Center without an appointment and receive walk-in-services which include instruction and practice in a variety of skills related to spoken communication. The schedule for walk-in services changes every semester. Please check Department Hours to view the current schedule.
Can I be guaranteed to get speech-language instruction after I sign up and request it?
We do our best to schedule you quickly but sometimes there is a waiting list for services. Speech-language instruction is in high demand. It’s open to all students and we do our best to serve everyone who has requested it.
If I do not receive speech-language instruction right away, is there another way for me to practice my speaking skills?
You can use walk-in services for help in speech, interview, presentation, and other communication skills. However, this isn’t a substitute for individual speech-language instruction because it does not provide in-depth weekly instruction. You may wish to inquire about opportunities to participate in one of several spoken communication practice groups that are offered.
NTID hosts a free Eye and Ear Clinic for RIT/NTID students. All services are provided by board-certified fellowship trained physicians from the Unviersity of Rochester. An interpreter is provided for those who require ASL interpretation.
While the equipment at NTID Eye Clinic is limited, the ophthalmologist is able to perform full eye exams with pupil dilation, retinal exams, and write prescriptions. The doctor is also instrumental in setting up follow-up care at Strong Hospital at the University of Rochester.
Spring 2023 Eye Clinic Hours are Thursdays:
February 16th 8:00-11:30am
March 23rd 8:00-11:30am
April 20th 8:00-11:30am
Students are encouraged to make appointments with the otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat specialist) when they have special concerns related to their ears. The doctor is able to sign letters of medical necessity (for cochlear implant processor upgrades), diagnose ear infections, write prescriptions, perform wax removal, and provide general counseling. Because of the nature of the clinic, the doctor is unable to perform in-depth vestibular (balance) or throat/voice assessments. The doctor is also instrumental in setting up follow-up care at Strong Hospital at the University of Rochester.
Spring 2023 ENT Clinic Hours are Wednesdays:
February 15th 1:00-4:45pm
April 19th 1:00-4:45pm
Appointments are required to see the physicians. Students can make appointments for the Eye and Ear Clinic at the Audiology Center (Lyndon Baines Johnson Building #3130).
Lec/Lab 4, Credits 3
This course sharpens students' ability to think clearly, logically and creatively and to communicate knowledge effectively in an academic setting. Students will learn critical thinking strategies for examining issues and solving problems. Course topics include solving problems using a six-step model; exploring problem solving tools and strategies using campus resources, professional and proactive communication behaviors, and personal attributes for success, and applying knowledge of students’ rights and responsibilities to facilitate effective problem solving for academic and personal/social problems. The importance of thinking critically across various communication contexts (i.e., face-to-face interactions, written correspondence, group discussions, and presentations) will be stressed.
Independent Study: Communication Studies and Services
Ind Study, Credits 1 - 4
The description for each Independent Study request will be specified in each course proposal.
Lecture 3, Credits 3
This course examines the role of communication as it relates to establishing, maintaining, and ending relationships. Topics include: relationship development; self-concept; perceptions and first impressions; stereotyping, prejudice and discrimination; conflict resolution; active and passive listening; personal and social values; self-disclosure; gender-related communication; intercultural competence; and social networking.
Communication Across Cultures
Lecture 3, Credits 3
This course is intended to provide students with an introduction to the concepts of culture, communication, and communication across cultures by incorporating social, economic and political contexts and examining the differences among the world’s population. The students will learn about the relationship between culture and communication, increase their understanding of the communication relationship created by language, understand how that relationship differs when communicating across cultures, and examine how to reduce potential conflicts. Students will study a variety of cultures from around the globe including, but not limited to, African-American, Middle Eastern, Caribbean, Hispanic/Latino, and Asian Cultures, along with cultural differences related to religion, gender, the military, and Deaf culture. Communication within and across the cultures will be examined, along with differences between the deaf and hearing co-cultures.
Dialogue on Black Perspectives
Lecture 3, Credits 3
This course will challenge students to analyze and compare various perceptions about Black American life in the 21st century. This course includes but is not limited to racial, economic, and ideological shifts and their impact on past and current events. Cultural influences will be traced from early Western Africa to the United States. Viewpoints on identity, language, relationships, and generational differences will be explored through assigned readings and interviews. Students will lead the class in open dialogues associated with their researched topics. In addition, varying perspectives will be presented through lectures, guest speakers and personal experiences from individuals with diverse cultural backgrounds. Upon completion of this course, it is anticipated that students will have broader knowledge of the multidimensional aspects of the Black experience.
Lecture 3, Credits 3
This course focuses on the information and skills needed to be a knowledgeable, effective participant in small groups and teams. Topics related to group dynamics and team building are addressed at the practical and theoretical levels. These topics include characteristics of effective teams, stages of group development, how groups operate for different outcomes, group versus personal goals, the role of diversity, and group decision-making and conflict management strategies.
Organizational Communication and the Deaf Employee
Lecture 3, Credits 3
This course examines interpersonal and small group communications in organizational settings in today's global, corporate climate, with emphasis on important aspects of communication for deaf individuals entering a professional career. Students become familiar with the business environments of large and small companies and the implication of company size regarding personnel decisions. Case studies from selected corporations provide insights into elements of communication processes such as networks (electronic and non-electronic), organizational structures, managerial decision-making, interviewing, organizational development, and conflict resolution. Companies' perspectives on hiring culturally and ethnically diverse individuals and Deaf individuals are discussed. Laws, such as Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), related to the hiring and support of disabled workers are addressed. Additionally, processes to effectively communicate and market entrepreneurial business plans as a strategy for employment in an evolving world economy will be reviewed.
Lecture 3, Credits 3
This course sharpens students' ability to think clearly, logically and creatively in order to establish well-supported solutions and conclusions in a variety of situations. Critical thinking and reasoning strategies are learned and applied. Course topics include problem solving, the types and general rules of arguments, the analysis of arguments and rhetoric found in contemporary life, and argumentative writing and presentation. The importance of thinking critically and effectively during communication regardless of modality (writing, reading, signing, speaking, listening) is stressed.
Fact or Fiction: Becoming a W.I.S.E. Consumer of Digital Information
Lecture 3, Credits 3
Internet and social media platforms have led to an information-saturated digital world in which it can be difficult to know what is true, trustworthy, and worth resharing. This course will help students become Well-informed, Independent, Strategic, and Ethical (W.I.S.E.) consumers of digital information. Digital literacy skills such as information literacy, digital citizenship, and the importance of cultivating a positive and professional online presence (digital footprint) will be discussed. Students will develop analytical skills as news consumers and practice strategies for communicating responsibly and ethically across social media platforms. Students will learn how to evaluate the credibility of sources using fact-checking strategies and engage in ethical decision making to manage misinformation and disinformation. Invited guest lecturers will expand upon topics unique to D/deaf consumers.
Undergraduate Research: Communication Studies
Research, Credits 1 - 4
This course is a faculty-directed student research project at the undergraduate level. The research will entail an in-depth study in the discipline that could be considered of an original nature. Enrollment in this course requires permission from the Department Chair and completion of the NTID Undergraduate Research Contract.
Special Topics: Communication Studies and Services
Lecture 3, Credits 1 - 4
The description for each Special Topics request will be specified in each course proposal.
Introduction to Cued American English
Lecture 3, Credits 3
This course is an introduction to the Cued Speech system of representing spoken American English, its history, and application. Students will increase their awareness of spoken English and the pronunciation of words in conversation. They will also understand and describe the purpose of Cued Speech, as well as identify other populations and uses for Cued Speech. Students will understand the language learning benefits of Cued Speech. Upon completion of the course students will be able to accurately use Cued Speech to convey spoken American English. Students will receive credit for INTP-371 or NCOM-371, not both.
Advanced Cued American English
Lecture 3, Credits 3
This course is a blended course (classroom/online) that builds upon the foundations of the Cued Speech System. Cued Speech is a phonemically based system that uses hand shapes and mouth movements to represent spoken language, in this case spoken American English. In this course, students will practice transliterating from spoken American English to cued spoken American English in order to increase speed and fluency while maintaining accuracy of the Cued Speech system. Students will also boost receptive abilities by watching online videos of deaf native users of Cued American English. This class will prepare the students for transliterating in the classroom. They will also deepen their understanding of the research and methodology behind the applications of Cued Speech via reading research articles and presenting their findings to the class. Various transliterators will visit the class to discuss their experiences with Cued Speech while explaining the process of achieving certification at the national level.
Special Topics: Communication Studies
Lecture, Credits 1 - 3
The description for the special topics course will be specified in each course proposal.