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Sponsored Research Office

BA in American Sign Language/English Interpreting

Project Director:


Dr. Cheryl Davis

Amanda Smith: Undergraduate Program Coordinator

Contact Phone:






Funding Source:


US Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs

Project Description:

Since 1974, Western Oregon University (WOU) has been preparing professional interpreters to work with children and adults who are deaf. Since 1991, WOU has offered a nationally-recognized program that leads to a Bachelor’s degree in American Sign Language/English Interpreting. This degree program is housed in WOU’s Regional Resource Center on Deafness, along with six other deafness-related degree, continuing education and technical assistance programs.

The BSI program offers a 4-year course of study that culminates in a Bachelor of Arts degree. Students complete the Liberal Arts Core Curriculum as the foundation for the undergraduate degree. In addition, students complete the ASL/English Interpreting Academic Major and an Academic Minor that complements the interpreting major. The ASL/English Interpreting program is the only Bachelor’s degree interpreter education program in the Northwest, however its national reputation attracts students from throughout the United States. Traditionally half of the accepted students are selected from other states and transfer to WOU to complete this major.

This grant provides funding for student scholarships to assist us in recruiting 36 educational interpreter students (18 Juniors and 18 Seniors) per year. The commitment of federal training grant funds for student support allows Western to recruit, educate, retain and graduate the most highly qualified students. Upon graduation, these interpreters will provide the highest quality of interpreting services to deaf and hard of hearing students in a variety of educational settings.

Sponsored Research Office (503) 838-8589 | or e-mail: