Please note that this news item is more than 6 months old. The information contained within may no longer be current.

Lipreading teachers celebrate being the first to train completely online

A group of trainee lipreading teachers have celebrated becoming the first ever to complete their teacher training fully online.

The trainees at City Lit in London started the course in October last year via Zoom due to Coronavirus restrictions affecting the way the course has been delivered.

Trainers Fiona Pickett and Lorraine Braggins adapted the course throughout the year to transfer to online delivery.

Lorraine Braggins, Head of Progamme for Lipreading and Acquired hearing loss,  said: “Our trainees were not just learning the plate spinning you do when you teach anything online. They were also applying specialist methodology for delivering lipreading exercises to deaf and hard of hearing learners. Half of this year’s group also have a hearing loss themselves, so on top of that they were reading captions which they rely on to understand what their students are saying. And all this while juggling the stresses of life and work through a pandemic!  What a phenomenal achievement for them all.”

The course equipped the new lipreading teachers with skills including how to deliver lipreading classes online.  Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the past year has seen a trend towards online learning as those with hearing loss sought out ways to maintain their communication and feel less isolated.

There is also currently a shortage of lipreading teachers to teach the estimated 11 million people in the UK with hearing loss. Therefore, these newly qualified teachers will be able to teach in a traditional classroom and also offer online classes which means they can reach learners who might otherwise not be able to access a local course.

The new cohort celebrated their achievements with a virtual Oscars-style party on the final day of the course.

Lorraine Braggins added: “Our trainees come from all over the country and from a whole range of different professional backgrounds so they all bring something valuable to the course which they can share. Though they were not meeting up in person, we were really impressed by the support they gave each other and how much of a group dynamic they created from their screens. We congratulate our newly qualified lipreading teachers on their great achievement and wish them all the very best in their new careers.”

Applications are now being accepted for the next course starting September 2021  For more details email

City Lit also offers face-to face and online lipreading courses from introduction to advanced levels. For more details email