Oct. 11, 1999 Vol. IV, No. 4

Deafness Center 'Teleclass' Reaches National Audience

Two-Hour Broadcast to All 50 States Highlights CSUN's Growing Technological Capacity

In the university's largest satellite broadcast ever, Cal State Northridge's National Center on Deafness has hosted a live, national "teleclass" on improving educational opportunities for deaf and hard-of-hearing students.

The two-hour presentation, featuring a panel discussion of deaf and hard-of-hearing college students talking about their experiences and answering questions, was broadcast to more than 140 sites in all 50 states and Canada. The session was aimed at other universities, colleges, school districts and service providers.

"Often as professionals, how we think we're coming across may not be the same as the perspective of our students," said Allisun Kale, the NCOD staff member who produced the teleclass. The discussion was intended to give educators a better perspective of deaf students' experiences, Kale added.

CSUN's National Center on Deafness provides interpreting and other services to the university's population of more than 250 deaf and hard-of-hearing students, the largest such mainstreamed university population in the western United States. But NCOD also is one of four federally funded regional centers on deaf student services.

The Thursday, Sept. 30 teleclass was titled "Diverse Students, Diverse Stories: Perspectives on Postsecondary Access Issues from Students who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing." By discussing how deaf students can be mainstreamed into regular educational settings, NCOD officials said their objective is to improve students' access to higher education.

Senior Lauren Teruel, a deaf CSUN student, moderated the teleclass with a panel of other college students that included Michael Agyin, Cal State Northridge, CA; Rahul Deodhar, Northeastern University, MA; Kenneth Frilando, CUNY La Guardia Community College, NY; Rosa Guzman, Holyoke Community College, MA, and Lori Lovin, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, AR.

The teleclass was a production of the NCOD's Western Region Outreach Center & Consortia, the federally funded arm of the campus unit that supports other colleges and universities serving students who are deaf and hard-of-hearing. NCOD hosted a similar teleclass a year ago, but to a smaller audience, officials said.

CSUN officials said the satellite broadcast also highlighted the broader university's growing technological capacity. CSUN now has the ability, via microwave or satellite transmission, to broadcast courses and other events not only across the country but also to international audiences.

This fall, for example, CSUN is telecasting about 30 different university courses to various student and corporate audiences around Southern California. Those courses include many in engineering and some in teacher training, reaching audiences from Edwards Air Force Base to Ventura County to El Segundo.

The university's first large-scale satellite broadcast was the NCOD's first teleclass last fall. Several other events have been produced since then. "The potential for the university to be seen nationwide is really thrilling," said one campus broadcast engineer.

Students from other campuses participating in the NCOD teleclass included (l. to r.) Rahul Deodhar, Rosa Guzman, Kenneth Frilando and Lori Lovin.


October 11, 1999

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