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American Sign Language: Home


The American Sign Language Studies program at Delgado utilizes a sociolinguistic and cultural approach to the instruction of sign language. This approach best models the language used both formally and informally by the Deaf community and is incorporated into all educational components of the ASLS curriculum.

The program prepares interpreters to work in a variety of entry level settings with a diverse population. Upon completion of the degree, students are prepared to sit for the national certification knowledge examination and to seek advanced degrees.

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What is ASL?

American Sign Language (ASL) is a complete, complex language that employs signs made by moving the hands combined with facial expressions and postures of the body. It is the primary language of many North Americans who are deaf and is one of several communication options used by people who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. The exact beginnings of ASL are not clear, but some suggest that it arose more than 200 years ago from the intermixing of local sign languages and French Sign Language (LSF, or Langue des Signes Française).

No one form of sign language is universal. Different sign languages are used in different countries or regions. For example, British Sign Language (BSL) is a different language from ASL, and Americans who know ASL may not understand BSL.

*Information courtesy of NIDCD

"They are facing not a theory but a condition, for they are first, last, and all the time the people of the eye." - George Veditz



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