Introducing the New, Interactive Guide to Access Planning

Sponsored by Phonak, the interactive GAP Learning Guide was developed to help teens and young adults with hearing loss to better enable and empower themselves as they make significant life transitions. GAP is the first guide of its kind that is interactive and combines the wide spectrum of resource materials used to support self-advocacy for young people with hearing impairment.

Importantly, it was developed by a team of audiologists, deaf educators and professionals with hearing loss who understand the everyday challenges and work to develop strategies to address them.

We assume that teens and young adults likely receive a certain level of hearing assistance technology while in high school, but recognize that colleges or the workplace have gaps in providing the necessary support. The section called “MyGAP” provides teens and young adults with information about their rights as a person with hearing loss, available technology and how to choose what’s best for their individual lifestyle needs. It also includes tips and scenarios on how to effectively communicate their needs to teachers, employers, etc.

GAP also contains information specifically for professionals such as teachers, college disability coordinators, vocational rehabilitation counselors, and employers who support teens and young adults. Additionally, it provides useful information for parents and caregivers.

We hope that the guide is informative, easy to use and practical. We champion all efforts that empower teens and young adults with the latest knowledge in order to succeed, and we wish everyone the best of success.


Cheryl DeConde Johnson, Ed. D.                                                                Pat Henry, Director of Government Services,
The ADVantage - Audiology                                                                           Pediatrics and Wireless
Deaf Education Vantage Consulting                                                            Phonak U.S.

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Tools within GAP

Some of the tools within the program include:

  • self-assessments to identify areas to learn, an individually designed accommodations letter for teachers and employers,
  • a comprehensive guide to various technologies including an FM selection wizard, plus activities and resources.

There are also special sections for professionals and parents to support this transition to independence and ideas for how to implement the GAP program.

Application Requirements

The GAP application is a zipped 20.6 MB file.  This program is designed to run on a PC after it has downloaded and burned to a disc. If you have a MAC, you will need software that simulates a PC.

Application Support

This program is designed to run on a PC. If you have a MAC, you will need software that simulates a PC.

Note: Technical assistance to run this program is not available through Phonak.

Getting Started

To get started, simply click on the Guide to Access Planning  link in the Downloads section to the right.

  • You will be prompted to download or save the application. Choose save and save the application to a cd.
  • Once the application is downloaded, burn the disc.
  • Eject the disc, then re-insert it into your computer.
  • The program will start automatically and guide you through the operation.
  • Be sure to review the User Guide that is contained in the program.
  • Navigation support is best obtained through someone who is skilled with computer software programs.