Graduate Catalog

M.A. in Deaf Studies: Cultural Studies


Dr. Erin Moriarty Harrelson, Program Coordinator


The Cultural Studies Concentration challenges students to develop methods of inquiry, research, and critique that explore historically-created social institutions and cultural processes which shape the world and deaf ways-of-being. Students will gain a breadth of knowledge through multi-disciplinary perspectives while also gaining a depth of inquiry through an extended project in which they will pursue an area of interest through an academic thesis, a creative project, or applied advocacy project. This concentration prepares students for advanced studies towards a doctoral or another terminal degree. Students in this Concentration are required to be on campus.

Admissions Procedures and Requirements

Applicants for the M.A. in Deaf Studies must complete the application procedures and meet the requirements for graduate study at Gallaudet University. Visit the Graduate Admissions web site for more information and a checklist of application requirements. Detailed program information and course descriptions are also available under the 'Overview' and 'Courses' tabs.

First Date for Consideration of Application: November 15
Due Date for Completed Application: February 15

Program Specific Requirements:

  • Three letters of reference
  • ASL Essay: Personal Statement. In video format, submit a personal statement of interest in the program. This essay will be used for 2 purposes. It will give help us understand your personal interest in our program and will also be used to determine your proficiency in ASL. Why are you applying for this degree? What do you hope to gain from the degree? What are your professional interests after you graduate?
  • Transcripts
  • ASLPI 3 or above.
  • GPA 3.0 or above.

Recommended Prior Coursework:

  • Introduction to Deaf Culture
  • Introduction to ASL Structure

Plan of Study

All students admitted to the program must complete the following core courses with grades of B or higher.

Semester I (Fall)

DST 700Deaf Studies Research Methods I


DST 703Deaf Cultural Studies


DST 705Language, Culture, and Power


HIS 731History of the American Deaf Community


Semester II (Spring)

DST 701Deaf Studies Research Methods II


DST 710Cultural Practices in the Deaf Community


DST 712Enforcing Normalcy: Deaf and Disability Studies


DST 735Sensory Studies


Cultural Studies Concentration

Semester III (Fall)

DST 733Theory & Identity in Deaf Studies


DST 743Language Advocacy in Deaf Communities


DST 780Deaf Studies Master's Project I


Semester IV (Spring)

DST 737Law & Public Policy: The Deaf Community


DST 781Deaf Studies Master's Project II


DST 790Deaf Studies Internship


Total Credit Hours: 38