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This is how to get FREE hearing technology at your university

free roger pen for university students

College is tough, it’s even tougher for students who can’t hear clearly. 

Many students living with hearing loss are going through their university careers without the resources to hear clearly in the classroom.

In fact, of 4.6 million Americans who have a “learning disability” only 24 percent of university students say they informed their university, and only 17 percent received accommodations, according to a 2010 study by the National Center for Health Statistics. 

There are various reasons for students not requesting resources, but the good news is, once students are aware of the hearing technology that could help them in the classroom, they can get the items for free!

University students with hearing loss are guaranteed to free resources, in accordance with the The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 – Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

If you are a U.S. university student with diagnosed hearing loss, follow these easy steps to get a free Roger Pen or other technologies from your school.

Here are 4 Steps to take to get FREE Hearing Technology from your University:

1. Visit your audiologist

  • Document your current hearing loss to provide all information to your University Disability Counselor.
  • Collect your audiogram from your audiologist.
  • Ask your audiologist to include test results from your speech-in-noise test (ex: QuickSIN)
  • Document your hearing challenges at university – in the classroom or in social settings – and how these challenges could be solved with assistive technology.
  • Talk to your audiologist about what hearing technology products are compatible with your hearing aids.

Here’s a Tip! The Phonak Roger technology is accessible with all hearing aids on the market! If you do not have a Phonak hearing aid, you can get the Phonak Roger Receiver to add to your current hearing aid, which would allow you to use all Roger technology.

2. Understand Your Rights

All students with an impairment that limits “one or more major life activities,” is applicable for “appropriate educational services designed to meet the individual needs of such students to the same extent as the needs of students without disabilities are met,” according to The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 – Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

This includes students who use hearing aids and cochlear implants or other implantable hearing devices!

If you or your university has questions about this law, see “Frequently Asked Questions About Section 504 and the Education of Children with Disabilities.”

3. Take Action

As a university student, you need to initiate the conversation for additional assistance. You won’t always have an advocate for your learning like you may have had in high school. This is how to take action: 

  • First, visit your Campus Disability Service Office and talk to your Disability Counselor. If you don’t know who your Disability Counselor is, a quick Google search or visit to your Campus Administrator or Student Affairs Office will help point you in the right direction.
  • Request the assistive products you would like – based on your research and conversation with your audiologist.

4. Stay Positive

  • Once you receive your hearing assistive technology or services, you should experience a positive change to your learning experience! 

Read more: 3 Tips For Deaf Teens Preparing for University

  • If you still miss a few words during lecture, don’t worry. There are always ways to get equal access. Maybe this means moving closer to the professor so you can lip-read at while using the Roger Pen. Alternatively, you can request a note-taker or CART services to supplement your Roger microphone.
  • Consider joining a support group! There are likely other students on campus who also have hearing loss, where you can share challenges and success stories. Alternatively, online communities, such as, can allow you to learn about other students’ experiences and discover new success strategies.
If you’d like more information on the hearing technology available, or would like to talk to someone directly about getting free hearing technology from your university, please fill out the form, here: 

Have you used the Roger Pen or similar hearing technology at university? Let us know how you like them in the comments!

Author Details
The HearingLikeMe editorial team includes Jill Blocker von Bueren and Lisa Goldstein.