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. Service desk hearing loops provide a better listening experience for those with hearing aids or cochlear implants equipped with a telecoil (t-coil).

Download our 3-panel 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 Service Desk Loops

Brookfield Public Library
Delafield Public Library
Elm Grove Public Library
Menomonee Falls Public Library
Mukwonago Public Library
Muskego Public Library
New Berlin Public Library
Oconomowoc Public Library
Waukesha Public Library

Libraries in the Bridges Library System with Community Room Loops

Brookfield Public Library (meeting room info)
Delafield Public Library (meeting room info)
Menomonee Falls Public Library* (meeting room info)
Mukwonago Community Library* (meeting room info)
Muskego Public Library (meeting room info)
Pewaukee Public Library (meeting room info)
Oconomowoc Public Library (meeting room info)
Waukesha Public Library (meeting room info)

*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. If you or your provider have questions, contact audiologist and national hearing loop advocate, Dr. Juliette Sterkens jsterkens@hearingloss.org. For questions about the Bridges Library System hearing loop project, contact Bridges staff member Angela Meyers, ameyers@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.