Deaf Studies

  • Commencement Interpreters

    Welcome to the Deaf Studies Department

  • A circle of people signing

    Welcome to the Deaf Studies Department

  • A crowd of people applauding at a Stop Audism event

    Welcome to the Deaf Studies Department

Why Deaf Studies?

Why major in Deaf Studies?

Deaf Studies is not a study of them; it is a study of us. We are deaf; we are hearing; we are old; we are young; we are from every corner of the United States; we are from every part of the globe. We are richly diverse in our backgrounds, our interests, our abilities and disabilities--but we are one in the pursuit of excellence in education and the equalization of opportunities for all people. Majoring in Deaf Studies will broaden and enrich your knowledge on the most basic elements of our humanity ... language, culture and society.

Why study Deaf Studies at California State University, Northridge (CSUN)?

CSUN is proud to be one of only two institutions in the nation that offers a comprehensive undergraduate program in the area of Deaf Studies. It has long been acknowledged as a leader in providing quality education in a broad variety of fields relating to deafness and is unequaled in terms of its exceptionally skilled and dedicated faculty, a special student body, and extensive resources.

At CSUN, we believe in learning by doing as well as by reading, listening, and observing. Elements of our undergraduate program offer outstanding opportunities for practicum and internship experience. In addition, Deaf Studies is active in sponsoring a number of campus and community activities including Distinguished Visiting Guest Speakers, Deafestivals, and ASL Deaf Theatre Productions, just to name a few. Majors are always encouraged to get involved "behind the scenes".

Interested in getting involved in student organizations?

The Deaf CSUNians is one of the largest chartered organizations under the University's Associated Students program. Its objective is to promote cultural, political, and social awareness among its deaf and hearing members and in the campus community. The Deaf Studies Association is another organization that brings together people of varied backgrounds for the purpose of broadening cultural awareness. In addition to fostering support groups for Deaf Studies majors, it sponsors a variety of special events for the community at large including professional workshops, guest speakers, academic panels, social gatherings, and more! Membership in both of these organizations is open to all!

Want interaction with deaf people?

CSUN boasts the largest nationwide enrollment of students who are deaf and hard of hearing at a mainstream institution. CSUN was one of the first mainstream universities in the nation to admit people who are deaf and hard of hearing--providing inspiration for the National Center on Deafness, a landmark institution on the campus of CSUN that provides support services to the deaf and hard of hearing student population and continues to bridge the deaf and hearing communities. Today, more than 220 deaf and hard-of-hearing students attend CSUN and are mainstreamed into regular university classes.

Need library resources?

The resource library maintained at the National Center on Deafness on the campus houses the most extensive collection of materials related to deafness in the western United States. The information found in the library includes signed and captioned media, reports, newsletters, periodicals, and books from programs and organizations throughout the world. With thousands of videotapes, books, and other materials related to deafness, this library is a valuable regional research base.

What do majors do after graduation?

During recent years, a number of significant legislative and judicial initiatives and directives have appeared at the federal, state, and local levels to ensure that the approximately 500,000 deaf Americans have full access to public and private programs and services. As social, community, legal and educational services have expanded nationwide, many career possibilities have opened up for persons interested in professional work in deaf-related fields. The Deaf Studies major at CSUN will provide appropriate exposure and preparation to students for professional careers as sign language interpreters, sign language instructors, counselors, government specialists, audiologists, speech pathologists, program administrators, community service personnel, and many other deaf-related vocations.

The Deaf Studies faculty and staff enjoy having a personal relationship with all of our majors, and we look forward to meeting you! In no other single location will you find a comparable concentration of teaching, research, learning, and service activities on such a wide range of topics relevant to deafness. Some of the best known names in the field, resources, and opportunities are all here at CSUN!

Careers in Deaf Studies

During recent years, a number of significant legislative and judicial initiatives and directives have appeared at the federal, state, and local levels to ensure that the approximately 700,000 Deaf Americans have full access to public and private programs and services. As social, community, legal and educational services have expanded nationwide, many career possibilities have opened up for persons interested in professional work in deaf-related fields. The Deaf Studies major at CSUN will provide appropriate exposure and preparation to students interested in careers as sign language interpreters, sign language instructors, counselors, government specialists, teachers of the deaf, community service coordinators/advocates, and many other deaf-related vocations.