Online Bachelor’s Degree In Deaf Education

Last Updated on December 20, 2022

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Proficiency in American Sign Language (ASL) is required prior to beginning the student teaching portion of this endorsement. This requirement can be met by taking 16 credits (ASL I-IV) of ASL from either UNL (on-campus; two courses for two summers), at your local college/university, online through Gallaudet or another program that offers online ASL courses, or by achieving a score of proficient or better on the Sign Language Proficiency Interview (SLPI) or EIPA assessment.

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MS in Education of the Deaf - Online - Texas Woman's University

Deaf Education Degree Online

One way to overcome the language barrier is through translation or interpretation. Interpretation/ translation is one of the least popular industries in the country. The demand for professional ASL-English interpreters is increasing annually. The National Interpreter Education Center reported a nationwide shortage of qualified interpreters. A two-year degree was required back in the year 2008 but not until July of 2012 when the National of Registry of Interpreters (RID) required a four-year degree for those who want to become certified interpreters.

Certificate In ASL Online

Is a Sign Language Degree Right for You?

If you’re interested in helping people who are deaf or hard of hearing communicate and interact with those around them, you should consider earning a degree in sign language. This degree features study in American Sign Language (ASL) and teaches students how to effectively interpret information between one source and another. Sign language interpreters work in a variety of professional settings, including in education and for government agencies. Job prospects for sign language interpreters should continue to be favorable due to a shortage of people who have the skills needed to do the work, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Online Bachelor’s Degree In Deaf Education

Career Outlook:

 In the United States, there is a growing shortage of qualified personnel to serve students who are DHH and their families (U.S. Department of Education, 2016). According to the 2018-2019 U.S. Department of Educations annual listing of Teacher Shortage Areas, 41 states reported a critical shortage of special education teachers, which include teachers of the deaf and hard of hearing.If you would like work as a special education teacher and are interested in learning sign language, then an online master’s degree in deaf education may be the right choice for you. A master’s degree in deaf education prepares teachers to help elementary, middle, and high school students who are deaf or hard of hearing. A deaf education master’s degree program may require the completion of 36 credit hours of courses, although the length of the curriculum may change based on the institution, as well as the amount of previous work experience and graduate credit you bring into the program.

Advice for Earning Your Sign Language Degree Online

When you’re searching for an online sign language degree you should check to see if each school you’re considering is accredited. Accreditation is awarded to schools by regional and national accrediting agencies if they meet a certain standard of quality. Colleges and universities are typically judge by the quality of their faculty, professional development requirements for professors, if the facilities are appropriate for learning, and more. Accreditation for sign language interpretation is awarded by the Commission on Collegiate Interpreter Education (CCIE). CCIE accreditation isn’t required, but it does demonstrate that a graduate of a particular program has received an education from a college that pursues academic excellence.

Required Courses

Graduates of a bachelor’s degree in ASL interpreting program need to be fluent in sign language and have strong interpreting skills. As such, an undergraduate program may include courses such as introduction to interpreting, American Sign Language, processing skills, transliterating, and deaf cultural studies. The courses are meant to prepare students to pass the Educational Interpreting Performance Assessment or the National Interpreter Certification exam offered by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf. On-campus programs may offer plenty of opportunities for learners to interact with deaf and hard of hearing students, which may help them improve their interpreting skills.

Common Career Paths Sign Language

Earning a bachelor degree in sign language interpreting can give you the skills you need to work as an interpreter for companies in several industries. You can apply your skills to help students at any grade level understand what a teacher is saying, as deaf and hard of hearing specialists at vocational rehabilitation agencies or other healthcare facilities, for a travel or tour agency, or in social service. Regardless of the industry you work in you’ll be helping those who are deaf or hard of hearing learn from or interact with people they may not have been able to communicate with on their own.

  • Sign Language Interpreter: Sign language interpreters convert information from spoken language to sign language. Interpreters must be fluent in the source language, typically English, and ASL so they can accurately translate information while it’s being spoken by someone else or in conversation. They help people who are deaf or hard of hearing communicate with those who can hear. Approximately 25% of interpreters and translators, including sign language interpreters, work for state, local, and private educational institutions, and 13% are employed at health care and social assistance facilities, according to the BLS. The average annual salary earned by interpreters and translators was $50,610 in May 2011, the BLS reports. Interpreters and translators in Virginia made $89,890, the most of workers in any state. Employment in this field is expected to grow 42%, which is much faster than average, from 2010 to 2020, according to the BLS. Demand for sign language interpreters should grow considerably as more people use video relay services, which allow people to use a sign language interpreter to place online video calls. The BLS states that opportunities should be best for interpreters who have professional certification, and job prospects should remain favorable due to a shortage of workers who have the necessary skills.

Best Online Bachelor’s Degree In Special Education

Individuals who choose to pursue Special Education as a career path deserve our utmost respect. These professionals put in a copious amount of time and attention, all while maintaining an incredible amount of patience, to care for children with disabilities. Becoming a successful special educator requires a specific academic background and rigorous training as part of an undergraduate degree.

To become a teacher in special education, you’ll need to get a B.S. or B.A. degree in Education with some type of unique certification or endorsement in Special Education. You might also choose a degree with a focus on a particular age range, such as K-6 or high school. Although you can always choose a traditional brick-and-mortar institution for your education, you can also earn your degree entirely online.ADVERTISEMENT

Cheap Online Special Education Degree Programs Ranking

  1. Pacific Oaks CollegeLOCATIONPasadena, CATUITION$$$$$
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Deaf Education Colleges and Schools

A select number of 4-year colleges throughout the country offer degrees in deaf education. Some programs are open to anyone interested in pursuing a degree in deaf education, while others require knowledge of American Sign Language (ASL) and completion of some deaf education classes.

Deaf Education Schools

These schools offer degrees related to deaf education in a variety of settings, including private and public universities.

College/UniversityLocationInstitution TypeDegrees OfferedTuition 2018-2019*
Boston UniversityBoston, MA4-year, Private not-for-profitBachelor’s, Master’s, Graduate Certificate$53,948 (undergraduate), $52,816 (graduate)
College of Southern NevadaLas Vegas, Nevada4-year, PublicAssociate’s$3,492 in-state, $10,371 out-of-state (undergraduate)
Eastern Kentucky UniversityRichmond, KY4-year, PublicBachelor’s$9,666 in-state, $19,444 out-of-state (undergraduate)
Miami Dade CollegeMiami, FL4-year, PublicAssociate’s$2,838 in-state, $9,661 out-of-state (undergraduate)
Texas Christian UniversityFort Worth, TX4-year, Private, not-for-profitBachelor’s$46,950 (undergraduate)
University of TulsaTulsa, OK4-year, Private, not-for-profitBachelor’s$41,509 (undergraduate)
Western Oregon UniversityMonmouth, Oregon4-year, PublicBachelor’s, Master’s$10,197 in-state, $26,421 out-of-state (undergraduate), $14,796 in-state, $24,156 (graduate)

Sources: School websites and *National Center for Educational Statistics

School Selection Criteria

Students interested in deaf education may want to take the following into consideration when choosing a school:

  • Bachelor’s degree programs are appropriate for individuals interested in entering this field, whereas master’s degrees are geared towards those with an undergraduate in elementary education, speech pathology, or a related area. Schools with more advanced programs may have multimedia labs and other deaf education technology.
  • Students should research internship opportunities offered by deaf education programs.
  • Combined programs are available at some schools; these programs place students seeking a master’s degree on a ‘fast track’ by offering dual degrees.
  • Some programs train students to operate in specific environments, such as hospitals and schools for the deaf.

Bachelor’s Degree in Deaf Education

Bachelor’s degree candidates in deaf education gain the knowledge necessary to teach deaf and hard of hearing children at all grade levels. They usually must complete student teaching requirements, as well as internships and research projects.

Master’s Degree in Deaf Education

A master’s degree program in deaf education is aimed at preparing students to work at a higher level with the deaf and hard of hearing. Extensive time outside of the classroom, research projects and collaboration with professionals are part of most programs.

There are a variety of schools that offer degrees in deaf education and at different levels, including associate’s, bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Students may wish to consider internship and training opportunities when selecting a school.

American Sign Language Certification Programs

Deaf Studies Major

Deaf Studies Major

Description: A program that focuses on the sociological, historical and linguistic aspects of the deaf and hearing impaired, and that prepares individuals to work with the deaf and hearing impaired. Includes instruction in American Sign Language, deaf studies, American deaf culture, structure of American Sign Language, history of the American deaf community, and civil rights of deaf people. Is Deaf Studies the right major for you?
Take the MyMajors Quiz and find out if it fits one of your top recommended majors!

Deaf Studies Major | The University of Arizona

Bachelors Degree In American Sign Language

Bachelor’s Degrees in American Sign Language & Deaf Studies

Earn your American Sign Language (ASL) and Deaf Studies degree or certificate

The interdisciplinary Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of General Studies in American Sign Language (ASL) and Deaf Studies degree programs offer comprehensive coursework to prepare you with the valuable skills to complement in-demand jobs and the foundations for ASL fluency or interpreting.

This historic collaboration between Johnson County Community College (JCCC) and the KU Edwards Campus (KUEC) unites JCCC’s 30-year history in ASL education and expertise with KUEC’s mission of providing the highest quality programs to equip the workforce with in-demand skills.

Fewer than 35 ASL bachelor’s degrees or ASL/English interpreting degrees exist in the United States and less than a handful in the region. With the recent bachelor’s degree requirement to sit for national testing and earn certifications, these new degree programs address a significant need. Here’s your chance to serve the area’s robust Deaf community.

The B.A. and B.G.S. in American Sign Language and Deaf Studies offer the following four tracks/certificates:

  • Deaf Studies and Social Justice
  • Advanced ASL
  • Becoming an Interpreter
  • Professional Interpreting

KU’s School of Professional Studies also offers the following graduate and undergraduate certificates, helping professionals of varying backgrounds, as well as students in a variety of academic programs, specialize their knowledge:

  • Undergraduate or Graduate Certificate in Deaf Studies and Social Justice (online or in-person courses)
  • Undergraduate or Graduate Certificate in Advanced American Sign Language
  • Undergraduate or Graduate Certificate in ASL/English Interpretation (prepares students to sit for ASL/English interpreter certification examination)

Learn more about program structure below, and download the program guide for curriculum specifics.

What Career Paths use Professionals with a Deaf Studies and ASL Degree or Certificate?

Blending language and culture gives you broad applications for your career including the ability to communicate directly with the Deaf population. These programs can help you continue on your path to becoming a professional interpreter, augment your existing ASL credentials or add an in-demand skillset to your other professional abilities.

A wide variety of fields need ASL-fluent professionals and interpreters and those with a heightened understanding of Deaf culture and social justice. Some of the career paths listed below are available to individuals with ASL proficiency combined with other professional skills. Students may achieve this combination through prior education and experience or double-majoring at the KU Edwards Campus.ASL and Deaf Studies fields; social work, customer service, communications, human resources, law, medicine, counseling, education, interpreting

Which ASL and Deaf Studies Degree or Certificate is right for me?

Are you in a field in which you would benefit from learning more about American Sign Language (ASL) and Deaf Studies for direct communication? Are you a Deaf student who desires more background and a professional credential in your heritage language? Are you wanting to take the next step in becoming a professional interpreter?

The Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of General Studies programs in American Sign Language (ASL) and Deaf studies are designed for those who have either completed an associate degree with a focus on ASL or ASL/English interpreting or those who have completed ASL I-IV (typically four semesters of coursework). We are also excited to offer Deaf students advanced academic training in their heritage language.

KU’s undergraduate and graduate American Sign Language and Deaf studies certificates each address different levels of proficiency in ASL and understanding of Deaf culture.

The certificate in Deaf studies and social justice does not require proficiency in ASL, and focuses on intersectionality and Deaf culture, social justice and allyship and issues in Deaf education. The certificate is offered both in-person at our Overland Park Campus or online. 

The certificates in Advanced American Sign Language and ASL/English Interpreting are designed for students who have base-level proficiency in American Sign Language and English, including students with an undergraduate degree focusing on ASL or ASL/English interpreting, Deaf and hearing heritage ASL users.

Why a KU American Sign Language and Deaf studies degree or certificate?

Bachelor of Arts in ASL and Deaf Studies

  • 30 credit hours plus KU undergraduate requirements
  • May complete 2 of 4 tracks 15-18 credit hours each
  • Required courses for the Bachelor of Arts (BA) in ASL & Deaf Studies includes proficiency in ASL language through the fourth level

Bachelor of General Studies in ASL and Deaf Studies

  • 30-33 credit hours plus KU undergraduate requirements
  • May complete 2 of 4 tracks 15-18 credit hours each

You may also pursue undergraduate or graduate certificates in advanced American Sign Language, ASL/English interpretation and Deaf studies and social justice. See the choices below and download the program guides for more information. Each guide provides the program’s curriculum, career paths, admissions information, tuition and more.

  • Undergraduate or Graduate Certificate in Deaf Studies and Social Justice (in-person or online courses)
  • Undergraduate or Graduate Certificate in Advanced American Sign Language
  • Undergraduate or Graduate Certificate in ASL/English Interpretation (prepares students to sit for ASL interpreter certification examination)

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