Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education
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Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education

BA in Deaf and Hard of Hearing EducationWould you like to help deaf and hard of hearing students connect and communicate with others? Do you want to join a legacy of passionate, award-winning teachers?

Consider majoring in Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education at Converse and become a teacher who changes lives. We will guide you to develop communication and literacy skills to assist deaf and hard of hearing students in residential and public school settings.

Degree Offered  

  • BA in Special Education: Deaf and Hard of Hearing

About Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education

Converse College offers the only program for credentialing teachers of the deaf and hard of hearing in the state.There is a shortage of qualified teachers for the deaf, particularly those skilled in American Sign Language (ASL). The Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program meets the South Carolina certification requirements for licensure in Special Education – Education of the Deaf and Hearing (Grades PK-12) and Elementary Education (Grades 2-6).

We will prepare you to be a skillful and engaged instructor who can teach PK-12 students who are deaf or hard of hearing. As a Converse Education major, you will observe instruction in local schools, participate in clinical experiences, implement new skills learned in related coursework, and assist teachers in their classroom.

Converse’s education program will give you the edge in your field with our strong liberal arts foundation and hands-on experience. When you graduate from Converse you’ll be certified to teach in South Carolina and amply prepared to take the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Praxis subject assessment prior to student teaching.

BA in Deaf and Hard of Hearing EducationConverse’s education program gives you a strong liberal arts foundation with hands-on experience in the classroom. You will have access to observe instruction in local schools, participate in clinical experiences, implement new skills learned in related coursework, and assist teachers with their roles in public and residential schools.

We have a long history of educating teachers for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students, as well as working with the South Carolina School for the Deaf and the Blind (SCSDB) and the public school’s Spartanburg Hearing Impaired Program (SHIP). These partnerships will provide you with diverse experiences with children who are deaf or hard of hearing along the entire continuum of placements and services. These valuable experiences will fully prepare you for teaching in any program serving deaf and hard of hearing children.

Our program is the only Deaf and Hard of Hearing program offered in the state; you can even take American Sign Language for your foreign language option.

Converse’s faculty continually challenge students to integrate theory with practice. Our goal is to provide extensive coursework and field experiences to prepare you to teach with confidence in the field of Deaf Education. You won’t just learn during classroom instruction but also through the field experiences we offer in all modes of communication for deaf and hard of hearing students including American Sign Language, Manually Coded English, speech and audition.

These field placements ensure a wide range of experiences working with deaf and hard of hearing children, preparing you to improve, practice, and demonstrate competencies that align with the Council for Exceptional Children’s Deaf and Hard of Hearing specialty standards.

More reasons to choose Converse:

  • Our programs are accredited by the Council for Accreditation for Educator Preparation (CAEP), approved by the South Carolina Department of Education and enjoy certification reciprocity with many other states;
  • Our clinical opportunities will give you first-hand experience with students of various ages and challenges;
  • We offer opportunities to observe and assist teachers in local schools;
  • You will have opportunities to participate in clinical experiences at nearby schools including the SC School for Deaf and the Blind, McCarthy Teszler School, Washington Center, as well as the Spartanburg Hearing Impaired Program (SHIP), which serves all seven school districts in Spartanburg County;
  • We are one of the few colleges that teaches American Sign Language V as part of our required curriculum;
  • The majority of our students have a job within six months of graduation; many students have secured positions prior to graduation;
  • The majority of our students consistently score high on the Praxis subject assessment.

Clinical Experiences

The Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program, along with the South Carolina School for the Deaf and the Blind and the Spartanburg County Hearing Impaired Program, have a Professional Development School partnership. This collaboration provides opportunities for sharing joint responsibility for pre-service teacher preparation and gives you professional experience.

BA in Deaf and Hard of Hearing EducationDuring your junior year, you will have the opportunity to observe the daily workings of a classroom with deaf children and you will also teach children and youth in grades PK-12, who have various interests, skills, and abilities. You will observe how teachers of the deaf and hard of hearing meet the individual learning needs of their students while utilizing specialized or adapted curricula to teach content knowledge.

Student Teaching

During your last term at Converse you will complete a 60-day student teaching requirement. Once you successfully complete the Praxis subject assessment in your particular area of specialty, as well as the Principles of Learning and Teaching exam you will be eligible for placement in student teaching.
You will work closely with your cooperating teacher throughout your student teaching and will receive visits and guidance from your college supervising teacher. Our goal is for you to be confident and fully prepared to teach in your own classroom after graduation.

Community Partnerships

Our Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program gives you ample opportunities to interact with the local Deaf community by attending plays, performances, and sporting events at the SC School of the Deaf and the Blind and by attending silent dinners and various events hosted by our Deaf community.

Our Deaf and Hard of Hearing program includes courses required for add-on certification in Elementary Education (grades 2–6).  Many of our majors take additional classes to get add-on certification in other areas such as Early Childhood Education, Intellectual Disabilities, Learning Disabilities, or Emotional Disabilities.

All Special Education: Deaf and Hard of Hearing majors must take the Praxis subject assessment prior to graduation. The required exams are subject to change and teacher candidates should consult their program worksheets and their advisors with questions about the code numbers for correct exams.

Sample Courses

  • Teaching Language: Deaf and Hard of Hearing
  • Audiology and Speech Science
  • Speech and Auditory Development
  • Educational Perspectives: Deaf and Hard of Hearing

For full course requirements, see the academic catalog.

BA in Deaf and Hard of Hearing EducationWhat are Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education alumnae doing?

Converse-trained special education teachers of the deaf are working in public and private schools, and residential schools for the deaf in South Carolina and beyond. Our program is the proven standard for supplying classroom-ready, fully certified special education teachers for deaf and hard of hearing students, with experience in current classroom issues, methods, and technology.

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education Stories