American Sign Language

American Sign Language

American Sign Language program minor scWould you like to learn a unique and fascinating language that opens up a world of communication with the Deaf Community? Then Converse’s American Sign Language minor is perfect for you!

The American Sign Language minor gives students ample opportunities to learn this beautiful language, both in the classroom and with the local Deaf Community.

Program Offered

  • Minor in American Sign Language

Related Degree

About American Sign Language

American Sign Language (ASL) is the natural language of the Deaf Community in America and Canada that originated in Connecticut in the early 1800s. It is a complete language with its own grammatical and linguistic properties, expressed through movements of the hands, torso and face. The combination of these movements creates a captivating language that is becoming the third most studied foreign/modern language in colleges and universities in the United States.

Converse College is located less than five miles from the South Carolina School for the Deaf and the Blind, the only residential school for the Deaf in the state. ASL students have many opportunities to visit the campus and attend athletic and cultural events. Additionally, there is a large vibrant Deaf Community in the Spartanburg area that provides additional opportunities at restaurants and community events to socialize and practice ASL skills with Deaf individuals.

ASL classes after the first introductory level are taught by Deaf individuals or by children of Deaf adults. Our professors provide students with rich first-hand experiences of the language and the community.

American sign language program
Converse students perform a puppet show during a Deaf History and Culture Course.

The American Sign Language Minor provides students with a foundation in ASL along with opportunities to understand topics related to Deaf history and culture. Students take five ASL courses that allow students to build on the accuracy and fluency of their expressive and receptive language skills.

Additionally, students take a Deaf history and culture course that studies the history, customs, language, and culture of Deaf people. With a minimal amount of lectures, students learn about given topics that they then share with their peers. Students participate in creating group projects about historical events, famous Deaf individuals, Deaf art, and even a puppet show depicting a traditional Deaf story.

For full course requirements, see the academic catalog.

The skills learned in this minor could benefit students who plan to work with members of the Deaf Community in a business, vocational, or residential school setting. The ASL Minor also gives students a foundation go on to graduate school to become an ASL interpreter.

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