Hearing Loops

In the Loop @ the Library

In 2014 and in 2015, the library system received a Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant to fund hearing loops at a select number of its member libraries. Hearing loops provide a better listening experience for those with hearing aids or cochlear implants equipped with a telecoil (t-coil). Since the 2014-2015 grant to provide hearing loops to libraries, several member libraries have added hearing loops to their service desks or meeting rooms.

Download our brochure about hearing loops in libraries.

About Hearing Loops

Hearing loss is a major public health issue affecting 1 in 5 people. Several local libraries now offer service desk hearing loops and/or meeting room loops for patrons who use hearing aids or cochlear implants.

What is a hearing loop? A hearing loop system is an Assistive Listening System that transfers sound—from a microphone or TV—directly to your hearing device or cochlear implant, via a tiny and inexpensive telecoil (t-coil) receiver.

What are the benefits of hearing loops?

  • Works with your existing hearing devices—no extra purchases or devices required.
  • No extra noise, wall bounce, echo or sound distortion.
  • Delivers customized sound to your devices.
  • Can be installed in your home, car, house of worship, or public transit venues.
  • Sound is contained to your devices—never worry about bothering others.

How do I use a hearing loop? All cochlear implants and approximately 65% of hearing aids have a built in wireless receiver called a telecoil (t-coil). To use a hearing loop, simply turn on your t-coil by pushing a button on the hearing device. This t-coil program may need to be activated by your audiologist. The library also has a loop receiver that may be helpful for persons who are hard of hearing or do not have a hearing aid equipped with a t-coil.

Hearing Loop T logo

Hearing Loop Installed symbol. Switch hearing loop to t-coil setting.

Libraries in the Bridges Library System with Hearing Loops

Brookfield Public Library (Serving Persons with Special Needs)

Delafield Public Library (Adaptive Services)

Elm Grove Public Library* (Accessibility and Assistive Services)

Karl Junginger Memorial Library (Waterloo)‡* (library web site)

Menomonee Falls Public Library‡ (Assistive Services)

Mukwonago Community Library‡ (Large Community Room)

Muskego Public Library (Assistive Services)

New Berlin Public Library* (library web site)

Oconomowoc Public Library (Assistive Technology)

Pewaukee Public Library (Community Room)

Watertown Public Library ‡ (meeting room info)

Waukesha Public Library (Program Room and Carnegie Room)

*Has service desk loop
Locally funded

Libraries may wish to download the hearing loop toolkit here.

Have a Question or Want to Learn More? 

For questions about your hearing aids and t-coils, consult with your audiologist. For questions about the Bridges Library System hearing loop project, contact Bridges staff member Angela Meyers, ameyers [at} bridgeslibrarysystem.org or 262-896-8245.

Project Funding*

This project is supported by Library Services and Technology Act funds, awarded to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction by the Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services.