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Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services

Services for students who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing are provided by OAS based on the documentation submitted by students at the time of application and their initial meeting with their accessibility specialist. 

If you have any questions regarding closed captioning, speech-to-text, or interpreting accommodations, please contact Jason.Kapcala@mail.wvu.edu or call 304-293-0458.

Closed Captioning


OAS creates captioned versions of class film, video, and web media for students who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing. 
  • Class Sessions: Students will have closed captioning services provided in their classes once they have submitted their semester accommodation request through their SAMM account. Students must request accommodations each semester.
  • Custom Captioning: Custom video requests may be submitted by members of the WVU community. These requests are not directly associated with a student’s accommodations. OAS will caption these videos at its own discretion, based on the availability of captioners, and cannot guarantee specific turnaround times. To request custom video captioning, please contact Jason.Kapcala@mail.wvu.edu or call 304-293-0458.
Once instructors have submitted media for captioning, they should allow 4-6 weeks for completion of most requests. Please be aware that YouTube automated captions do not meet the standard required for this academic accommodation. 

Media captioned by OAS is done so in full compliance with the October 2018 United States Copyright Office exemption to Section 1201 Rulemaking of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)  and has been created in support of students with disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Speech-to-Text (Real Time)


OAS provides real-time speech-to-text services for students who are authorized for this accommodation. These services may be provided in person or remotely. 

  • Class Sessions: Students will have speech-to-text services provided according to their class schedules once they have submitted their semester accommodation request through their SAMM account. Students must request accommodations each semester.
  • Other Academic Sessions: Students wishing to have a speech-to-text captioner for advising appointments, study groups, tutoring sessions, performances, out-of-class lectures, student orientations, and other academic events, must request a captioner at least 3 business days prior to the academic session by filling out a Custom Request form
West Virginia University’s captioners are trained by TypeWell and have passed the TypeWell Final Skills Check. They are expected to adhere to the Association of Transcribers and Speech-to-text Providers (ATSP) Code of Professional Conduct. 

Sign Language Interpreting


OAS provides sign language interpreting services for students who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing. These services may be provided in person or remotely. 

  • Class Sessions: Students will have interpreting services provided according to their class schedules once they have submitted their semester accommodation request through their SAMM account. Students must request accommodations each semester.
  • Other Academic Sessions: Students wishing to have an interpreter for advising appointments, study groups, tutoring sessions, performances, out-of-class lectures, student orientations, and other academic events, must request an interpreter at least 3 business days prior to the academic session by filling out a Custom Request form
  • Non-Academic WVU-Sponsored Events: Students wishing to have an interpreter for non-academic events must request an interpreter at least 7 business days prior to the event by filling out a Custom Request form. This policy also applies to prospective WVU students attending WVU recruitment events. OAS reserves the right to prioritize academic accommodations over non-academic accommodations.
  • Requests for Student Guests: Family members and guests of students may request an interpreter for WVU-sponsored events that their student is participating in, such as graduation ceremonies, student orientations, award ceremonies, and student presentations. Requests must be made at least 7 business days in advance by filling out a Custom Request form. OAS reserves the right to prioritize academic accommodations over non-academic accommodations.
  • Other Requests: When hosting events, departments at WVU may receive requests for an interpreter for non-student visitors and guests. OAS is happy to consult on these requests to ensure that appropriate services are secured. However, the department or unit hosting the event is responsible for costs associated with the provision of those non-student services. Departments cannot legally require person(s) needing accommodation to pay for the provision of services.
West Virginia University’s sign language interpreters are required to maintain their certification at the national level (NIC) and/or state level (VQAS Level III or higher). They are expected to adhere to the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) Code of Professional Conduct