This program is unique in Ontario.

The American Sign Language and Deaf Studies program is open to both Deaf and non-deaf students and provides intensive training in American Sign Language (ASL) and English. If you are thinking about entering the Honours Bachelor of Interpretation (ASL – English) program, or if you want to combine ASL with another career, this program is highly recommended. This program is unique in Ontario.

Female Community Services Student working in the Deaf and Deafblind field. Female has a flat hand facing the camera with her index finger in the middle of her palm.


Program name
American Sign Language and Deaf Studies
1 year (2 semesters)
Starting month
Ontario College Certificate
Method of study

Year of Study

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Program Availability

Domestic students
Sept. 2020 Open
Jan. 2021 N/A
May 2021 N/A
International students
Sept. 2020 Open
Jan. 2021 N/A
May 2021 N/A

Full Description

The American Sign Language and Deaf Studies program is open to both Deaf and non-deaf students and provides intensive preparation in:

  • American Sign Language (ASL) and English
  • an orientation to Deaf culture
  • current social issues affecting Deaf people

The curriculum combines:

  • opportunities to learn and practice ASL
  • classroom teaching about the structure and features of ASL

Students will have the opportunity to:

  • learn, understand and participate in basic conversations in ASL
  • develop stronger skills in spoken and written English
  • develop a basic understanding of the role of the ASL-English Interpreter

ASL Group

Your Field Study options

Although there is no field placement requirement in the American Sign Language and Deaf Studies program, students will have the opportunity to practice through simulation experiences in the classroom.

Program Standards and Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Communicate effectively in oral and written English.
  2. Express and receive messages accurately in routine conversations using American Sign Language.
  3. Apply basic knowledge of Deaf culture, the Deaf community, and the interpreter profession.

Required Courses


semester courses
CodeCourse Name
COMM1022English Foundations for ASL Students
SIGN1060Becoming an Ally


semester courses
CodeCourse Name
GSSC1129Introduction to the Deaf Community
COMM1007College English

Detailed course outlines

General Education Electives

Your Career

ASL skills facilitate communication with Deaf people in a wide variety of health-care, business, educational and social service settings.

Fluency in ASL is an asset for anyone who interacts with members of the Deaf community or with the general public. To broaden employment prospects, combine this certificate with:

  • business
  • early childhood education
  • teaching
  • nursing
  • counselling
  • other diplomas and degrees

Note that this program does not prepare you to be an ASL-English Interpreter, Deaf Culture Instructor, or ASL Instructor. Should students wish to pursue this profession, we encourage C114 graduates who meet program requirements to apply for the Honours Bachelor of Interpretation (American Sign Language – English) (C302) program at George Brown College.

Future Study Options

Graduates may apply to the Honours Bachelor of Interpretation (American Sign Language – English) (C302) program at George Brown or similar programs at other colleges if they wish to become Sign Language Interpreters.

This program is a recommended prerequisite for the Honours Bachelor of Interpretation (American Sign Language- English) (C302).

For graduates wishing to work with the Deafblind, they can apply to George Brown’s Intervenor for Deafblind Persons (C108) program. The General Education Elective taken in C114 will count as credit toward the C108 program requirements.


$3,683.00 *

Additional Cost

* Amounts listed are the total of tuition, materials, student service and ancillary fees for the first two semesters of programs starting in Fall 2019. Fees are subject to change for programs starting in Fall 2020 and at later dates.

Financial Assistance

This program is approved for OSAP funding, provided the applicant meets OSAP eligibility criteria.

Admission Requirements

Applicants are selected on the basis of their academic achievement, including the required courses, and any other selection criteria outlined below.

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma or equivalent**
  • Grade 12 English (C or U)

** Mature Student status (19 years of age or older and no OSSD)

Mature Students may take the Admissions Assessment for English, OR may consider upgrading to achieve the credit(s) needed in English.

Please note that George Brown is committed to ensuring that applicants will succeed in their program of choice and meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to the program. Applicants may be required to have grades higher than the minimum requirements stated.

Course Exemptions

College or university credits may qualify you for course exemptions. Please visit for more information.

Apply to

Domestic students should apply through Ontario Colleges

Success Stories

"The American Sign Language and Deaf Studies program at George Brown is a tremendous program whose rewards equal the effort that any participant invests in it. I was able to progress from knowing minimal ASL to being accepted into the Honours Bachelor of Interpretation program, also at George Brown College. The professors are generous, wonderful teachers who are patient but also ready to push eager students to achieve their goals. I highly recommend this program as a means to gaining insight into the fascinating and inspiring world of Deaf Culture in Canada through a key point of entry: American Sign Language." ​

Kate Alton (Graduate 2018, American Sign Language and Deaf Studies)

"The American Sign Language and Deaf Studies program is a great opportunity to meet Deaf community members and practice ASL full-time, in a Deaf environment. It builds a strong foundation in ASL and Deaf culture. This program is the best way to learn ASL in a fun and interactive environment!"

Nahed Dajjani (Graduate 2020, American Sign Language and Deaf Studies)

Contact Us

School of Deaf and Deafblind Studies

Phone: 416-415-5000, ext. 2185


Our office hours are 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Wayne Nicholson, ASL & Deaf Studies Program Co-ordinator


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    George Brown College is continually striving to improve its programs and their delivery. The information contained in this calendar is subject to change without notice. It should not be viewed as a representation, offer or warranty. Students are responsible for verifying George Brown College admission, graduation, and fee requirements as well as any requirements of outside institutions, industry associations, or other bodies that may award additional designations concurrently with, or after completion of, a George Brown College program.