14 Assistive Listening Devices (ALDs)

Assistive Listening Devices are various forms of technology that support communication access. They range from amplification devices, hearing aids and FM systems, to alerting devices, which use visual or alternative auditory signals. In many cases the ALDs can connect to smartphones or separate devices. 

Assistive Listening Devices (ALDs)

Ask Yourself

  • Have you explored the existing options for hearing systems in the space such as Hearing Loops and FM Systems?

Recommended Practices

Often these devices are personal devices that an individual wears but they can also connect or work in collaboration with university wide Assistive Listening Devices systems such as FM Systems and Hearing Loops.

Check-in with audio technologists or facilities to ensure these systems are working.

FM Systems

Some buildings and rooms at the University of Iowa provide FM Systems. These systems use FM radio signals to amplify the sound from the transmitter to the receiver. The user typically wears headphones, an ear bud, or connects the receiver to their hearing aids. 

Hearing Loops

A hearing loop (sometimes called an audio induction loop) is a special type of sound system for use by some people with hearing aids. The hearing loop provides a magnetic, wireless signal that is picked up by the hearing aid when it is set to ‘T’ (Telecoil) setting.

The blue ear sign lets you know that a venue has assistive listening services available. It’s a sign that’s recognized and used globally. If the sign has a ‘T’ next to the ear it indicates that a hearing loop is installed.

Hearing Loop Image
hearing loop image





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