Immerse yourself in a new language and earn an ASL certificate

The American Sign Language (ASL) program will provide you the opportunity to expand your understanding of languagehood by learning a language that relies on a visual modality. This will develop your awareness and sensitivity to linguistic and cultural diversity that enhances communicative and cultural competence.


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Program description

Offered by the Department of Linguistics in partnership with the Division of Continuing Studies, the Certificate in American Sign Language (ASL) develops a conversational level of communicative competence of ASL, alongside a knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the culture of the Deaf community.

Participants in the program gain an awareness of, and sensitivity to, linguistic and cultural diversity, enhancing their intercultural communicative and cultural competence.

Program partners

University of Victoria-log

Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics

Program features

Comprehensive programming
A 10.5-unit certificate program including 6 units of ASL language courses, complemented by advanced language classes and/or courses in second language acquisition, linguistics and cross-cultural communication.

Immersive language learning
ASL language courses taught by recognized members of the Deaf community, providing high quality immersive language learning and engagement with the Deaf community.

Flexible credential
Can often be completed concurrently alongside undergraduate studies allowing learners to graduate with two credentials.

Career enhancing
Fluency in ASL is a valuable skill for many careers, including speech pathology and audiology, sign language interpretation, social work, childcare, education, business and careers involving communication with the public.

Program outcomes

Upon completing the program, graduates will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an ability to communicate at a conversational level in ASL
  • Identify the key features of Deaf culture and the issues it faces, such as the social stigma of disability
  • Recognize the sources of identity for the Deaf culture
  • Demonstrate an understanding and appreciation of intercultural differences to promote effective communication when interacting with members of the Deaf community

These learning outcomes fall in line with the UVic learning outcomes of informed civic engagement and understanding, effective communication, and intercultural knowledge and sensitivity.

Who is this program for?

This program is designed for undergraduate learners looking to complete the ASL certificate concurrently with their undergraduate degree at the University of Victoria.

Our learners come from across the university community of learners, including the Faculties of Humanities, Science, and Social Sciences. 

Career options

Some of our learners pursue careers in the following roles:
  • Sign language interpretation
  • Education
  • Social work
  • Childcare
  • Speech pathology and audiology

News and resources

Estimated fees

Description Fee
Four required courses ($616.56 each) $2,466.24
Three elective courses ($616.56 each) $1,849.68
Estimated Total $4,315.92*
Fees listed in this section are an estimate. Total program fees may vary depending on delivery format, course selections, student fees, textbooks and taxes.

Application information

Admission requirements

This program is limited to UVic undergraduate students. Students should register themselves via UVic's Online Tools.

Students who have successfully completed a college or university course in ASL and/or are fluent ASL signers may apply to the department for consideration of advanced placement to a higher language level.

How to apply

The ASL certificate is currently open to undergraduate learners at the University of Victoria. To add the certificate to an undergraduate program, students should submit a request for a certificate declaration using DeclareMe.

Those planning to complete the certificate should consult the ASL program coordinator concerning their selection of courses. Please note that in order to obtain a bachelor’s degree, students must consult their degree requirements and faculty program requirements, in addition to the requirements of the certificate.

For questions about this program, please contact:

Sandra P. Kirkham, PhD (she/her)
ASL Program Coordinator

RELATED TOPICS: World Languages