Communication Support Workers

Available in the following locations:
  • National

Communication Support Workers (CSWs) are used to facilitate communication in lectures, workshops and seminars so that deaf* and hard of hearing students have the same access to further education as hearing students.

To book a CSW call:
Freephone: 0800 014 1401
Text: 0131 557 0419
SMS: 07797 800 064
Email: bookings@deafaction.org

Or click here to access the booking form

We have compiled a list of Communication Support Workers, which have been interviewed, PVG checked* and assessed by Deaf Action. Our CSWs are available throughout Scotland but do need to be booked in advance to allow us to find a Communication Support Worker most suited to your needs.

You can request a CSW online or please contact our bookings team for help with any questions you may have.

Where possible we match our CSWs according to a student’s needs and/or course material. So if you are looking for a CSW to assist with a biology course you will be matched (if possible) to a CSW with experience or interest in biology. You will be assigned one or two, if necessary, regular communication support workers this ensures the CSW becomes familiar with course or class content and fosters good working relationships.

*PVG checks or The Protecting Vulnerable Groups Scheme replaces Disclosure Scotland certificates http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Resource/Doc/304621/0095592.pdf

CSWs, or personal communication assistants as they are sometimes called, may use a variety of techniques to aid communication including:

  • Notetaking (handwritten or electronic)
  •  Translating spoken word into British Sign Language (BSL) or Sign Supported English (SSE)

Communication support workers are suitable for:

  • Students that use British Sign Language or Sign Supported English
  • Communicating with Deaf BSL users in an educational setting
  • Supporting deaf students that require communication assistance
  • Hard of hearing students

How people use our CSWs:

  • University or College courses: full or part time courses that last anywhere between three months to four years
  • Primary and Secondary schools: temporary and permanent positions
  • Work experience: course placements or to build personal experience
  • Evening courses: community organised or to gain a professional qualification
  • Extra-curricular activities: attending outside lectures and events relevant to course work

Please remember CSWs are not registered interpreters, if you are unsure of the best communication support for you we are always happy to advise.