Summary of occupation
Teachers of the deaf and hard-of hearing educate primary or secondary school students who are deaf or hard of hearing. They plan and conduct educational programs that promote the intellectual, physical and social growth of students and support students in the development of their literacy, numeracy and other academic skills.
Teachers of the deaf and hard-of hearing may teach a wide range of subjects in a support unit for the hearing impaired, or help support students in classes in mainstream schools. They may use a variety of signed languages to teach and communicate in the classroom.
Teaches academic and living skills to hearing impaired students, and promotes students' social, emotional, intellectual and physical development. Registration or licensing is required.
A teacher of the deaf and hard-of hearing needs:
- to enjoy working with young people
- patience and understanding
- a passion for teaching
- good problem solving skills
- the ability to motivate and guide others
- excellent interpersonal and communication skills.
Teacher of the deaf and hard-of hearing may work in specialist schools or facilities for hearing impaired students. They may also work as visiting teachers to provide support to hearing impaired students and their teachers, educational assistants or interpreters.
Teacher of the deaf and hard-of hearing usually work regular school hours, but may be required to work additional hours to prepare for classes and to attend staff meetings.
On average, teachers of the deaf and hard-of hearing can expect to earn between $1,437 and $1,981 per week ($74,760 and $103,049 per year), depending on the organisation they work for, and their level of experience.
Teachers of the deaf and hard-of hearing may use a variety of assistive technologies in their classroom. They may use sound enhancement technology, such as classroom-wide amplification systems, or personal radio systems consisting of a microphone worn by the teacher that transmits their voice to the student’s receiver. They may also use interactive whiteboards or multimedia with captions.
To become a teacher of the deaf and hard-of hearing, you usually need to study a degree in primary or secondary education, specialising in special needs teaching.
Alternatively, you can complete a degree in a relevant study area, followed by a postgraduate qualification in education. You may also need to undertake further postgraduate study in special needs education to specialise in teaching special needs students.
All universities in Western Australia offer relevant undergraduate teaching courses. Contact the universities you are interested in for more information. Learn more about your study options.
The Western Australian Foundation for Deaf Children, in collaboration with the Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children, offers the two-year Master of Disability Studies (Deaf/Hard of Hearing specialisation) through distance education via Macquarie University. Contact the Western Australian Foundation for Deaf Children for more information.
To work as a teacher of the deaf and hard-of hearing in Western Australia, you will need to obtain registration with the Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia (TRBWA). You will need to obtain a Working with Children Check from the Department of Communities and undergo a National Police History Check (NPHC) conducted by the Department of Education Screening Unit.
Apprenticeships and traineeships
As an apprentice or trainee, you enter into a formal training contract with an employer. You spend most of your time working and learning practical skills on the job and you spend some time undertaking structured training with a registered training provider of your choice. They will assess your skills and when you are competent in all areas, you will be awarded a nationally recognised qualification.
If you are still at school you can access an apprenticeship through your school. You generally start your school based apprenticeship by attending school three days a week, spending one day at a registered training organisation and one day at work. Talk to your school's VET Co-ordinator to start your training now through VET in Schools. If you get a full-time apprenticeship you can apply to leave school before reaching the school leaving age.
If you are no longer at school you can apply for an apprenticeship or traineeship and get paid while you learn and work.
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If you think you already have some of the skills or competencies, obtained either through non-formal or informal learning, you may be able to gain credit through recognition of prior learning.