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Deaf Culture (Study Guide)

The ASL University "Deaf Culture Study Guide"


Evolution of terminology:  Terminology changes over time with varying levels of acceptance from different factions of society at any one time. As of the time of this writing (early 21st century) the word Deaf has been accepted by the culturally Deaf community and major organizations representing Deaf people (such as the National Association of the Deaf and the World Federation of the Deaf) as an acceptable and proper term to use when discussing Deaf people.

Capitalization: Some people feel the word Deaf should always be capitalized for ethnic reasons. (The term "ethnic" refers to the classification of large groups of people according to shared cultural, linguistic, racial, tribal, religious, or national origins or backgrounds.)  Other people prefer to use the capitalized word "Deaf" when referring to being culturally Deaf and use the lowercase word "deaf" to refer to the physical condition of being deaf.  If you are a student in a Deaf Studies program you should check with your instructor regarding preferred local writing "style guidelines" at your school.  If you are a student and your local teacher prefers you to always capitalize the word Deaf then you should respect your instructor and follow his/her wishes.  If you are submitting a paper for inclusion in an academic journal then you should follow the submission guidelines for that journal and/or include in your article an early discussion of terminology and capitalization and your reasons for your capitalization choices. This study guide in general uses the lowercase word "deaf" to refer to the physical condition of "not hearing." This guide also strives to use the uppercase word Deaf to refer to Deaf people, culture, and organizations.  Please don't get hung up on a typo or a "yet to be updated not-yet-capitalized" use of the word "deaf" in this guide or website.  Focus on understanding the concepts not worrying about the typos.



Capital "D" Deaf:  Refers to being culturally Deaf.  Embracing the cultural norms and values of the Deaf Community. 

Captions: Captions or captioning refers to the use of subtitles on movies or videos to convey via text the voiced information or sounds that are happening in video. "Close captioning" (which is often abbreviated to "CC") refers to captioning that is normally not visible during regular viewing but can be turned on via a close caption decoder, chip, or software which can read the signal or file containing the captioning.  The phrase "open captioned" is the equivalent of "subtitled" and doesn't need to be "turned on" since it is made part of the viewable video (and can't be "closed" or "turned off").

Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing:  The phrase "Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing" is an inclusive version of the term "Deaf." Many modern agencies and authors use the phrase "Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing" as an appropriate and acceptable way to refer to the spectrum of individuals they serve or about whom they write. It is a much better phrase than "The Deaf and Hearing Impaired."  The term "hearing impaired" is considered offensive by many Deaf people.  Also, technically, d/Deaf people "are" "hearing impaired" so the phrase "The Deaf and Hearing Impaired" is redundant.  Think of the phrase "Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing" and the term "Deaf" as looking through a microscope if you look under high power you see the distinctions. When you look at the Deaf Community closely you notice, "Oh, there are some (HH) who can voice and have enough residual hearing to make use of hearing-aids to communicate directly (albeit with difficulty) with Hearing people (either in person or on the phone) -- and there are others (Deaf) in the community who don't voice, don't wear hearing aids, and communicate with Hearing people only via writing, in-person interpreters, video-relay interpreters, or (if the Hearing person knows sign) sign language.  However, if you pull your microscope back a bit and take a broader view, you see they are all part of the "Deaf Community" and thus are all "Deaf."  That is why many HH people label and or think of themselves as "Deaf" in general and "Deaf/hh" in specific. 

Deaf Community:  In general, the "Deaf Community" consists of those Deaf people throughout the world who use sign language and share in Deaf culture.

Deaf Culture:  Deaf Culture consists of the norms, beliefs, values, and "mores" shared by members of the Deaf Community. [The word "mores" is pronounced "mawrays" and is a noun that means "the essential or characteristic customs and conventions of a community. "Mores" include the customs, conventions, ways, way of life, traditions, practices, and habits of a people. - (Google Definitions)]

Deaf School: Generally refers to state-run residential schools for the Deaf.  Culturally Deaf adults who attended a Deaf School are proud of that fact.

Deaf School:  A "Deaf School" is a state-run residential education institution. State residential schools for the Deaf are important institutions in the Deaf community.  A "Deaf School" specifically refers to a state residential school. This is different from a "Deaf program" or a "day program" where students do not live on campus.

Deaf World / Deaf Community:  The phrases "Deaf World" and "Deaf Community" overlap quite a bit in typical real world usage but some distinctions are possible: The Deaf World includes all Deaf people as well as their families, friends, allies, employers, interpreters, teachers, priests, audiologists, and others with ties to the Deaf Community. The Deaf Community is made up of individuals that use sign language and are focused on living their lives rather than trying to change their status and live in the Hearing World.  Thus a preacher or parent who learns sign language might be a part of the Deaf Community but a cochlear implant doctor is not.  An interpreter who goes to Deaf events, has Deaf friends, and supports Deaf causes is a part of the Deaf Community.  But an interpreter who simply goes to a day job where they interpret for one Deaf client and then goes home and has little or no additional contact with Deaf people -- is not a member of the Deaf Community.  

Deaf/hh:  Culturally Deaf people who are able to use hearing aids, speechread, and talk with their voice may choose to label themselves as Deaf in general and hard-of-hearing in specific so as to not overstate their status.  For example, sometimes during introductions or explanations a person will sign, "I/me DEAF" and then will add the sign for "hard-of-hearing" immediately afterward as a way of stating that he/she is considers himself to be Deaf but with the caveat that he/she can hear to some extent.

Deaf: Culturally Deaf people prefer to be called Deaf. 

Deafness:  The term "deafness" is still quite common in blogs and writings -- even by Deaf people who are active in the Deaf Community. However you should know that there are growing numbers of people within Deaf Community that strive to avoid using the word "deafness" in their writing and communication because it has traditionally been a label applied to Deaf people by Hearing people in the context of "disability." Many Deaf consider the term "deafness" to embody primarily negative aspects of being Deaf.  Conversely, when discussing ourselves, our personal journeys, our level of self-acceptance, and our progress toward self-actualization as a person who is Deaf we often use the term "Deafhood."  Please realize that while many people still use the term "deafness" and you will still often see it online and in older writings this is a situation of language evolution away from one term and toward another. The term "deafness" has its uses and may persist indefinitely but you should at least be aware that "some" bloggers and activists are actively denouncing the term.

Disability Group:  In general, culturally Deaf people do not view themselves as being disabled nor belonging to a "disability group."  Instead we see ourselves as a linguistic and cultural minority.  We are an ethnic group with a shared culture and bonded together by a common language.   That doesn't mean that there aren't physically deaf people in the U.S. who consider themselves disabled. There are indeed many such individuals, but they are generally not fluent in ASL, did not attend state residential schools for the Deaf, are not married to a Deaf person, did not attend Gallaudet University (or a university with a strong Deaf program), and cannot realistically be considered culturally Deaf – and therefore are not members of the cultural "Deaf Community." 

Dominant Hand: The hand you do most of your signing with.

DPN: Deaf President Now.  DPN was both a campus protest and an international Deaf movement that took place the week of March 6, 1988 at Gallaudet University in Washington D.C.. Elizabeth Zinser, a hearing woman, had been newly elected president of Gallaudent University.  The students and international Deaf Community protested and demanded a Deaf president be appointed instead. This resulted in I. King Jordan, a Deaf man, becoming president of Gallaudet University.

Fingerspelling:  Fingerspelling (in ASL) consists of 22 handshapes that—when held in certain positions and/or are produced with certain movements—represent the 26 letters of the American alphabet.  Fingerspelling is also sometimes called "The Manual Alphabet." 

Font, ASL: There are type fonts that resemble fingerspelling. A popular fingerspelling font is called "Gallaudet (TrueType)" and is available for download for free from the net.

 GA: means Go Ahead. This is an abbreviation commonly used while typing on a TTY (teletype).  It means you are done with your turn and it is the other person's turn to go ahead and type.

Gallaudet, Edward Miner:  The youngest Son of Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet. Dr. Edward Miner Gallaudet was the founder and the first president of the Columbia Institution for the Deaf and the Dumb (Renamed Gallaudet College in 1893 and renamed again in 1986, Gallaudet University upon receiving university status) in 1857 in Washington, D.C. He served as a president from 1864 to 1910.  (Source:

Gallaudet, Thomas Hopkins: Born December 10, 1787 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  He entered Yale University at age 14. He graduated from Yale first in his class three years later, and decided to join the ministry.  Reverend Gallaudet met Dr. Mason Cogswell and his Deaf daughter Alice.  Dr. Cogswell persuaded Mr. Gallaudet to travel to England to study their methods of teaching Deaf students. There Gallaudet met a Deaf educator, Laurent Clerc, and convinced him to come back to America and help establish the first American school for the Deaf.

Handedness:  Left-handed people sign left-hand dominant--a mirror image of right handed signers. Left-handed people also fingerspell with their left hand.

Hard-of-Hearing:  The phrase "hard-of-hearing" refers to people who have some degree of hearing loss but who can still function in the hearing world. Some hard-of-hearing people choose to learn sign language, form relationships with other Deaf, join Deaf organizations, attend Deaf events, embrace their Deafhood, and call themselves Deaf.  It is acceptable for culturally Deaf hard-of-hearing individuals to simply refer to themselves as Deaf. 

Hearing Impaired:  The term "Hearing Impaired" is not used by Deaf people to describe ourselves.  We refer to ourselves as being Deaf.  When referring to all people with a hearing loss we tend to use the phrase, "Deaf and hard of hearing." Sample of outdated usage:  The Regional Center for the Hearing Impaired."  A sample of a current, appropriate usage:  The Regional Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing."  While at one time the phrase "hearing impaired" was considered to be politically correct, it was an external label applied to Deaf people by Hearing people.  The phase Hearing Impaired was never embraced by the Deaf Community.

Hearing Person:  A person who can hear and has the mindset of a person who can hear is a referred to as "Hearing person." The term "Hearing" can be capitalized to refer to being a member of the "Hearing" culture but many writers do not capitalize it. 

Hearing School:  A "hearing school" generally refers to a public (or private) school that is mainly attended by children who can hear and taught by educators who use speech.

Hearing School:  The term "Hearing School" refers to a typical public school. In the Deaf Community we sign "HEARING SCHOOL" to mean "public school." A "Hearing School" is one at which the main mode of communication is "speaking." 

Hearing:  (Hearing Person or Hearie): Non-Deaf people. The term "Hearing" is sometimes applied broadly to refer to all people who have the ability to hear. Within the Deaf Community the term "Hearing" often refers to people who have functional hearing, prefer to talk, and are generally unfamiliar with sign language and Deaf Culture.

HH:  Hard-of-hearing.  This is sometimes also written as HoH.  Hard-of-hearing people have some hearing loss but can generally use the phone with amplification and can generally understand spoken speech depending on a number of factors including: distance, volume, facial hair, lighting, familiarity with topic, situational cues, accents, and noise. Thus the environment has a big impact on whether a HH person functions as a Hearing person or a Deaf person. 

Hugs or hugging:  Deaf people tend to hug more than Hearing (American) people.

IEP:  Individualized Education Program.  Deaf children are entitled to an IEP.

Interpreter / Interpreter for the Deaf:  In the American Deaf Community the term "interpret" generally means to change spoken English into ASL or from ASL to spoken English. We generally refer to individuals who interpret between sign language and spoken language as "interpreters" (not "translators").  Note: "Interpreter" is spelled with an "er" at the end, (not an "or").  

Introductions and meeting new people:  Upon meeting for the first time, Deaf people tend to exchange detailed biographical information and describe our social circles in considerable depth.

ITP:  Interpreter Training Program.  IPP stands for Interpreter Preparation Program.

Jr. NAD:  Junior National Association of the Deaf. This is the youth division of the National Association of the Deaf

Just "Deaf": In the Deaf community you rarely see the phrase "Culturally Deaf."  Rather we use just "Deaf." We are Deaf. Some of us are stone deaf and can't hear an oncoming train (and have died because of it). Some of us have quite a bit of residual hearing and can talk to our mom on the phone (but would rather sign to her if she could sign).  It is a spectrum. Deaf people have varying levels of residual hearing.  What makes us Deaf isn't our level of residual hearing but rather our choice to be a part of the Deaf Community.  We do not need to add the word "culturally" to the uppercase word "Deaf."  The phrase "culturally Deaf" is redundant because the uppercase spelling of the term "Deaf" already includes the concept of "culture."  Sometimes we add the word "culturally" to specifically point out that we are not discussing being physically deaf.  There is (or was) a popular phrase in the Deaf world: "Deaf People Can Do Anything Except Hear."  Actually, that phrase is not reflective of reality. The reality is there are many varying degrees of residual hearing amongst culturally Deaf people. From "profoundly" deaf, to hard of hearing. This is similar to the way Blind people have varying degrees of sight. Some see no light at all, but many can see "quite a bit" (especially with glasses). You could even argue that some people with "normal" hearing are culturally Deaf by virtue of having Deaf parents and having grown up in the Deaf community. I've even visited a charter school where hearing children were taught alongside Deaf children by Deaf instructors using ASL.

Leave-taking:  Deaf leave taking tends to be extended.  In other words Deaf "good-byes" tend to take a long time.

Lighting:  Lighting and the ability to see each other is very important to Deaf people. One of the reasons Deaf people sometimes prefer to hang out in the kitchen is because the lighting is better.

Lowercase "d" deaf:  Refers to being physically deaf, (not culturally Deaf). Physical "deafness" refers to a level of hearing below which a person is unlikely to understand speech for everyday communication purposes. For example, a person's hearing is not sufficient use the phone.

LRE:  LRE stands for Least Restrictive Environment.  While most parents, educators, and administrators agree that it is good to educate a child in the least restrictive environment the question becomes: What education environment is "least restrictive" for a Deaf child?  A residential school for the Deaf, a local school with an interpreter, a day program, an inclusive charter school, or some other education environment.  Hearing administrators often feel that mainstreaming Deaf students into public schools provides "the least restrictive environment" but members of the U.S. Deaf Community generally consider residential Deaf schools to be the least restrictive environment. 

LSQ: Langue des Signes Québecois is a popular signed language used in Canada.  Many people in Canada also use ASL.

Mainstreaming:  In the Deaf World, "mainstreaming" refers to the placement of a Deaf student in a hearing school with or without an interpreter.

MCE: Manually Coded English.  There are several signing systems designed to portray English on the hands.  These various systems can be lumped under the terms MCE, Manual English, or Signed English.

Medical model:  People who feel that being deaf is a problem to be solved subscribe to the "medical model" of deafness. Also sometimes called "Pathological Model."

Movies, Deaf:  Movies focusing on or heavily involving Deaf Characters. For example: Bridge to Silence, Love is never Silent, Children of a Lesser God, and others.

NAD: National Association of the Deaf. The NAD is the world's oldest Deaf advocacy organization.  See

NCI: National Captioning Institute.  The NCI was established in 1979 as a nonprofit corporation with the mission of ensuring that Deaf and hard of hearing people, as well as others who can benefit from the service, have access to television's entertainment and news through the technology of closed captioning.

NERDA: Not Even Related to a Deaf Adult.  A comical reference to Hearing people who don't have ties to the Deaf World.

NFSD: The (former) National Fraternal Society of the Deaf.  Offered insurance as well as fraternal and community service activities for Deaf people.

NMM: Non-manual markers: Non-manual markers are facial expressions and body movements. Non-manual markers are used to inflect signs. That means to change, influence, or emphasize the meaning of a sign or signed phrase. For example, when asking a question that can be answered with a "yes" or "no" you raise your eyebrows a bit and tilt your head forward slightly.

NTD: National Theater of the Deaf.  The NTD is a touring theater group composed of Deaf and hearing actors who entertain audiences worldwide through music, sign language, and the spoken word.

NTID: National Technical Institute for the Deaf.  NTID is located in Rochester New York and is a popular choice for Deaf students.

Oral / Oralism: A philosophy of encouraging (forcing) Deaf to speak and read lips rather than use sign language.

PL 94-142: Public Law 94-142: Passed in 1975 PL 94-142 promoted a free and appropriate education for all children.

PSE: Pidgin Signed English. Now referred to as "contact signing." Contact signing is often used when Deaf and hearing individuals need to communicate. One way to describe it is as a "middle ground" between artificially invented signed English systems and ASL. PSE follows English word order while using ASL signs.

RID: Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf.  The RID is the worlds largest association of interpreters for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.  The RID conducts and promotes certification of interpreters for the Deaf.  See 

RSC: Reverse Skills Certificate.  This is a type of interpreter certification. This refers to the ability to understand and voice what is being signed.

SEE: Signing Exact English ("SEE 2").  An invented sign system intended to represent English with the intent to assist deaf children in the acquisition of English. The letters SEE can also stand for "Seeing Essential English (SEE 1)" which preceded Signing Exact English.

Self-exclusion: There are many physically-deaf or hard-of-hearing people who are not a part of the Deaf Community.  Such individuals are part of the greater Deaf World but they choose to not "commune with" Deaf people nor learn our language—thus are not part of the Deaf Community.

SIMCOM: Simultaneous Communication. In the Deaf World "simcom" refers to the attempt to communicate via signing and voicing at the same time. Signing and voicing at the same time is frowned upon by many Deaf academics and Deaf community leaders since the signed message tends to suffer (have less fidelity). However, many Deaf individuals "do" use simcom quite a bit -- especially when in mixed Deaf/Hearing environments.

SK: Stop Keying.  It is (was) used to end a TTY (teletype) conversation. It indicates that you are going to "hang up" or terminate the conversation.  SKSK (a double SK) is a response by the other person that he acknowledges that you are ending the conversation and that he or she is quitting too.

SSI: Supplementary Security Income.  People on SSI receive regular checks from the government to help pay for basic living expenses.

Stay Deaf:  Many, (and likely "most"), culturally Deaf people if given the chance to become Hearing would choose to remain Deaf.  Even if we became fully able to physically "hear" we would not leave our Deaf spouse, quit our Deaf-friendly job, stop attending out Deaf socials, nor stop using sign language as our main mode of communication.  For many of us, magically (or medically) receiving the ability to "hear" would not instantly grant us the edibility to use spoken English.  Sure, there are plenty of bi-cultural Deaf/hh (culturally Deaf but physically Hard-of-Hearing)  people who might "make the jump" to "full hearing" -- since they already have Hearing friends and already use their voices to speak but it is not like that for "hard core" Deaf who have already built a comfortable, engaging, visually-centered life.

Storytelling:  The ability to skillfully tell a story is highly valued in Deaf Culture.

TC: Total Communication.  TC is a philosophy of Deaf Education that advocates using signing, voicing, writing, and other methods of communication. Unfortunately TC often becomes simply an implementation of "simcome" (voicing and signing simultaneously).

TTY or TDD:  Tteletype or Telecommunication Device for the Deaf.  In the old days, a TTY was a huge clunker that required a wheelbarrow to move around. TTY's shrank in size and people began calling them TDDs (or even Text Telephones in some government literature) but the Deaf Community continued to refer to the devices as TTYs.   Instant Messaging via text and video has made TTYs largely extinct.

Uppercase Deaf / Lowercase deaf:  While the uppercase and lowercase spellings of Deaf and deaf have not yet become standardized in print media, in general the lowercase spelling refers to being physically deaf while the uppercase spelling refers to someone who has internalized  the language, beliefs, values, traditions, attitudes, manners, and ways of the Deaf community.

Video Relay Service: A relay service allows Hearing people to call Deaf people, and vice versa.  A communication assistant (CA) answers a call from either a Deaf person or a Hearing person and then dials the number of the other person and then relays information back and forth between the two people. In the early days of Relay Service this was done between a telephone and a TTY (teletype).  Modern relay services now use video  for (at least) the signed portion of the call and thus are referred to as a video relay service" or VRS.

Views of Deafness: There are two main societal views regarding what it means to be d/Deaf: The cultural model and the pathological (or medical) model. Those who think of being d/Deaf as a simply another way of going through life (experiencing life) subscribe to the "cultural" view (or model) of deafness (or rather "Deafhood").  Those who view being deaf as a physical ailment or pathological condition that needs to be cured or fixed subscribe to the pathological view of deafness. The term "pathology" (in general) refers to the study of disease. The pathological view is typically held by people in the medical profession.  Particularly those who make money by attempting to "fix" d/Deaf people.  Culturally Deaf people don't consider ourselves to have a disease or problem that must be cured in order to have a good life.  I took a sign class with me to visit a Deaf party. Some of my students sat with me in the Deaf circle. I decided to ask if any of my friends would like to become "hearing."  Suppose a magic pill could be taken and and they would wake up the next morning "hearing." Each Deaf person said (via signing) NO!  My students were shocked. I explained in class the next day that Deaf people do not consider our condition pathological. To us, our deafness (Deafhood) is cultural.

Voc Rehab:  Vocational Rehabilitation.  Each state in the United States has a division or a program that focuses on providing vocational rehabilitation services for residents of the state who are disabled but might be able to work if provided rehabilitation services and/or support. This is an important government agency because it helps provide training and employment assistance to many Deaf people.

Voicing: Some d/Deaf people never voice. Others voice as well as a typical Hearing person.  Others engage in "selective voicing." One place you will sometimes see such Deaf people using voice is with their kids. In the home parents often need to get their kids attention and voicing is an easy way to do it. Also the children get used to the Deaf voice and can understand it just fine. Deaf are much less likely to voice to a hearing stranger. With our kids we feel comfortable, but with strangers we feel very cautious (as any oppressed group would). We don't tend to voice when we are talking with other Deaf skilled signers. Why voice to other Deaf? Another reason is we can't use voicing and ASL grammar at the same time. (See Simcom).  It is (generally) not appropriate to ask a Deaf person if they can voice.

VP: Video phone.

VRS: Video Relay service.

01. In the Deaf world the hearing children of Deaf parents are generally well accepted and considered to make good interpreters because of their familiarity with ASL and Deaf Culture. The special term that these children are called is: *CODA (Child of Deaf Adult)

02. What is the philosophy of embracing two languages and cultures? *Bilingual-Bicultural

03. What is the world's oldest Deaf advocacy organization? *National Association of the Deaf (NAD)

04. At what university did the "Deaf President Now" event take place? *Gallaudet

05. What is the name of government program that provides regular paychecks to help some Deaf people pay for basic living expenses? *Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

06. What service provides communication assistants or interpreters to facilitate Hearing people calling Deaf people, and vice versa? *Video Relay Service

07. What is the government agency that helps provide training and employment assistance to many Deaf people? *Vocational Rehabilitation

08. In the 1940's and 1950's where did Deaf people tend to gather (which starting around the 1960's rapidly declined)? *Deaf Clubs

09. What do we call text or subtitles that are embedded in a video signal which can be displayed on demand? *Closed Captions (CC)

10. What do we call a state-run residential education institution for individuals who are Deaf? *Deaf School

11. In the Deaf community what do we call a typical public school? *Hearing School

12. What is the common syndrome that affects many interpreters and Deaf people and causes numbness and/or pain in the wrists? *Carpal Tunnel

13. What was the protest that took place the week of March 6, 1988 at Gallaudet University in Washington D.C. and became an international Deaf movement? *Deaf President Now (DPN)

14. What phrase is considered "politically correct" by many Hearing people but is considered inappropriate and/or offensive by many culturally Deaf people? *Hearing Impaired

15. What term refers to a philosophy of encouraging (forcing) Deaf to speak and read lips rather than use sign language? *Oral / Oralism

16. What do we call "non-Deaf" people who can hear and who embrace the culture of people who can hear? *Hearing

17. Signing and voicing at the same time is frowned upon by many Deaf academics and Deaf community leaders. What do we call signing and voicing at the same time? *Simcom

18. What do we call the phone system used by many Deaf people that let's them see and be seen by the person on the other end of the call? *Video Phone (VP)

19. This law or "act" was originally passed in 1990 and has had a profound beneficial impact on the lives of Deaf people. *"Americans with Disabilities" (ADA)

20. This person is held in low esteem by many in the Deaf community because of his efforts to promote oralism. *Alexander Graham Bell.

21. What is an appropriate way to get the attention of a room full of Deaf people? *Flick the light switch a couple of times.

22. This organization was set up in 1967 and has chapters all over the U.S. Their purpose is to provide support, encouragement, and information to families raising children who are Deaf or hard of hearing. (For more information, see: *American Society for Deaf Children (ASDC)

23. This national organization is dedicated specifically to the improvement and expansion of the teaching of ASL and Deaf Studies. *American Sign Language Teachers Association (ASLTA)

24. This signed language is used in England and other areas of the world. One of its distinguishing features is that it uses a two-handed manual alphabet. *British Sign Language (BSL)

25. A highly esteemed liberal arts university in Washington D.C. for Deaf and hard-of hearing students. *Gallaudet University

26. Considered rude in the Deaf Community: *Talking without signing in the presence of Deaf people (if you know how to sign).

27. Culturally Deaf couples tend to hope for: *A deaf baby

28. Signs that are used to represent general categories of things or can be used to describe the size and shape of an object (or person). These signs can be used to represent the object itself, or the way the object moves or interacts with other objects (or people). Another definition is: "A set of handshapes that represent classes of things that share similar characteristics." *Classifiers (or "depictive verbs")

29. This Deaf man was born south of Lyons, France, in 1785. He became deaf due to an accident when he was very young. He enrolled at age 12 at the National Institute for the Deaf in Paris and graduated eight years later and became a tutor for the Institute. He journeyed to America at the request of Thomas H. Gallaudet in 1817 and helped establish the first American school for the Deaf. He retired at age 73. *Laurent Clerc

30. An obsolete term that refers to all people who have a hearing loss. This term is considered offensive by some Deaf. *Hearing Impaired

31. In 1966 R. Orin Cornett at Gallaudet University in Washington D.C. developed this visual communication method that used eight handshapes in four different positions along with the natural mouth movements that occur during speech. *Cued Speech

32. People who feel that being Deaf is about language and connection to other Deaf people subscribe to what model or view of thinking about the Deaf? *Cultural

33. What defines a person as a member of the Deaf Community? *The individual chooses to identify himself/herself as a member of the community, embraces Deaf Culture, and is accepted (generally) by other members of the Deaf Community.

34. Historically, how has Deaf Culture been transmitted? *Residential Schools for the Deaf (Deaf Schools) (and prior to the 1960's -- Deaf Clubs).

35. What percent of Deaf people have at least one Deaf parent? *Less than five percent. [Some sources say 10% but according to the article "Chasing the Mythical Ten Percent: Parental Hearing Status of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students in the United States" authored by Ross E. Mitchell, Michael A. Karchmer, less than five percent of deaf and hard of hearing children (receiving special education) have at least one Deaf parent. Source: retrieved 6/29/2015]

36. Why are Deaf communities unusual among cultural groups? *Most members of Deaf communities did not acquire their cultural identity from their parents. [Bauman, Dirksen (2008). Open your eyes: Deaf studies talking. University of Minnesota Press.]

37. How many signed languages are there throughout the world? *Over 200. [Source: Gallaudet University Library: Retrieved 6/29/2015. Also see: Ethnologue which lists 138 or so: retrieved 6/29/2015]

38. American Sign Language is most closely related to what language? *French Sign Language

39. What approach to education poses a threat to the continued existence of Deaf Culture? *Oralism

40. Culturally Deaf people in the United States prefer to use what language? *American Sign Language

41. What type of achievement or progress is valued by culturally Deaf people in the United States -- group or individual? *Group or collective achievement and progress (not individual)

42. Suppose you need to walk between two Deaf people who are having a conversation, what should you do? *Walk through without stopping.

43. If you arrive early or late to a Deaf meeting what should you do? *Provide details or an explanation

44. Why do Deaf people tend to show up early to lectures or large events? *To get a good seat where they can see clearly

45. What kind of architecture is valued by Deaf people? *good lighting, minimal visual obstructions, automatic sliding glass doors, safe walkways

46. What were Betty G. Miller and Chuck Baird? *famous Deaf artists

47. An organization dedicated to promoting professional development and access to the entertainment, visual and media arts fields for individuals who are Deaf or hard of hearing. *D-PAN (Deaf Professional Arts Network)

48. Where and when did the second Second International Congress on Education of the Deaf meet and (Hearing educators) vote to embrace oral education and remove sign language from the classroom? *1880 in Milan, Italy

49. While watching another person sign it is appropriate to focus on the signer's: *face

50. Is it okay to gently tap a person (who isn't looking at you) on the shoulder to get their attention? *yes

In ASL Linguistics what do we call facial expressions and body movements that are used to inflect signs? *Non-manual markers (NMMs)

What do we call signs which use handshapes that can be used to represent categories of things that share the same general characteristics? *Classifiers

What is the language of choice of Culturally Deaf people in America, parts of Canada, and many other areas in the world? *American Sign Language

[End of Study Guide]

If you would like even more information about Deaf Culture see Culture 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11


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