Notetaking for a deaf student


I’ve been asked by my course leader to make a little ‘diary/journal’ of my experience of the PGCE as a deaf student, good points and bad. I’ve decided to use this blog that I was assigned to set up for ICT so that I can kill two birds with one stone. Plus the fact I can type really fast, and write very slowly, meant the blog was appealing.

I knew when I started my PGCE I was going to need a notetaker. Unfortunately, my DSA was a bit slow, with my assessment only being done two weeks before the course started. It was a given that I wouldn’t get anything in place until November at least. So it was good news that I was able to follow the first few weeks quite easily, but as the 2nd week came, it was getting heavier and I definitely needed notes taken for me. A temporary notetaker was found for a couple of my sessions in the week and she was very good.  However, she was replaced by a notetaker who was going to do my notes full time. Unfortunately, this arrangement very quickly went sour, as he admitted he had never taken notes before for someone else other than himself. This was really disappointing because I havent got time to ‘train’ a notetaker. I’m on a post graduate course, not a degree in my first year. My course mates were very helpful while all this was going on, ensuring I could understand homework/vital information being given out. It was then through seeing a class mate’s notes that we came to an arrangement that she would do my notes for me. Essentially, all she had to do was carry on as normal, except photocopy her notes at the end of the day. Perfect. The course leader was excellent at pushing this arrangement through with the disability office (they kept muddling up my times/days of lectures to the temporary notetaker to get her to come back to do notes for me but it was too late by then) and all was sorted by the middle of week 3.

For a PGCE it is certainly worth getting a student ON the course to do the notes for you. Mainly because they know themselves how to organise the notes, what notes are important and so on. But you still need to pick the right notetaker. My notetaker is very upfront, which is why I thought our arrangement would work. I’d be the first to know if there were any problems! And her notes are really clear and concise. I’d be lost without her notes for sure.

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