Featured Student Otter - Hailey Dolak

. 2 min read

Many students who are deaf or hard of hearing have turned to modern assistive technologies to help them out in and out of the classroom. Otter is one of those technologies, and users are finding out that it can make a major difference in providing accurate and fast text to promote communication.

Hailey Dolak found Otter because she needed a service that could assist her during her lectures at SUNY Morrisville.

“I’m 100 percent deaf and wear cochlear implants to hear during class,” she said. “I need to record my lectures so that I can listen back on the lectures in case I’ve missed anything.”

Hailey wanted a program that could immediately provide her with text during her classes.

“I looked up apps to record my lectures and to live-write the lectures out as well,” she said. “And I found Otter.”

Using Otter helps Hailey to experience more than just the educational content of her lectures, because that’s not the only part of the classroom experience. Her favorite Otter conversation?

“My professor talking about her shenanigans,” Hailey answered. “It was funny.”

Hailey’s favorite feature within the app is the live text that the app generates. As a user records, Otter automatically shows a text transcription in the moment as speakers talk. Once the conversation is over, the app takes only a few minutes to generate a finalized, cleaned-up text.

That means that students don’t have to wait hours, days, or even weeks to get a transcription back, because they can read the text Otter generates immediately and keep up with conversations as they’re happening.

Otter has other uses as an accessibility aid, too. Students also use it to generate transcripts for videos, podcasts, webinars, and other media sources that don’t already have captions. Otter even has the potential to support communication between deaf students and their hearing peers outside of the classroom, whether at club meetings or social events.

With Otter, students who are deaf or hard of hearing have a new resource that can help support them on their campuses in a variety of ways.


Whether you’re just getting started or you're already a pro, we’d love to hear your experience using Otter as a student.

Submit your story here for a chance to be featured on the Otter blog or social media channels. All featured students will receive 1 year free of Otter Premium.




Sydney Kuntz

Sydney Kuntz is a freelance writer who likes using interactive media to tell diverse stories. She writes about ice hockey for SB Nation while she finishes her BA in Journalism at American University.