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Deafhood: Global Diversity in Deaf Culture

Course Code: INTR 1285
Faculty: Child, Family & Community Studies
Credits: 3.0
Semester: Flexible delivery ranging over 2 to 15 weeks
Learning Format: Lecture, Seminar
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

This course will provide opportunities for students to develop an understanding of Deaf culture and to explore a new paradigm described as Deafhood. Definitions and theories of culture will be studied through a historical perspective of the lives of Deaf people around the world. Historical implications on current practices of providing services and education for Deaf people in the world today will also be examined. Course instruction will be in American Sign Language.

Course Content

The following global ideas guide the design and delivery of this course:

  • Deaf communities, locally, nationally and internationally reflect diversity similar to that evident in the majority culture
  • People working in the Deaf community need to comprehend diversity and the implications of diversity specific to Deaf individuals and groups
  • Variation in Deaf individuals’ lived experiences affect the formulation of identity and sense of Deafhood
  • Interpreters need to recognize and comprehend Deaf individuals and groups from a global perspective, rather than as clients bridging just two local cultures and languages
  • Sociological, psychological and educational perspectives need to be considered by interpreters working with Deaf individuals
  • Deaf individuals and Deaf groups are unique cultural and linguistic entities

Methods of Instruction

  • Lecture/discussion
  • Small group work
  • Guest speakers
  • Course readings/videotapes/handouts

Means of Assessment

This course will conform to Douglas College policy regarding the number and weighting of evaluations. Typical means of evaluation would include a combination of:

  • Group presentations
  • Field research
  • Video-taped and/or written assignments
  • Attendance and participation

This is a letter graded course.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Recognize and describe Deaf cultural diversity in local, national and international arenas, including historical influences.  
  2. Examine the influence that society values and norms have had on the formation of Deaf culture.
  3. Explain the parameters, commonalities and diversity within the realm of Deafhood.
  4. Identify the influence of external factors on the formation of Deaf identity such as the historical lack of social acceptance.
  5. Discuss the subtle role of the medical profession in the definition of Deaf people and Deaf culture.
  6. Recognize historical milestones such as the impact of Socrates, the Milan 1880 conference, and the New Era 2010 initiative on the lives of Deaf individuals and communities locally, nationally and internationally.
  7. Differentiate between a fixed definition of “client” and a model that includes considerations of context in which Deaf individuals and groups exist.  

curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.