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Associate of Arts Degree
American Sign Language/Deaf Studies

The Associate of Arts Degree in Deaf Studies is a foundational degree for those wishing to obtain mastery of American Sign Language (ASL). By completion of specific General Education courses, this program fulfills many of the requirements and foundation courses for transfer to baccalaureate Deaf Studies majors.  American Sign Language skills can be applied immediately to career choices in the fields of education, nursing, counseling, film, or any other area Deaf people live and work. Students can further their careers by pursuing degrees in Deaf education to be a credentialed teacher to Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) students. Students may also pursue a career in ASL pedagogy, to teach ASL in a secondary or post-secondary educational setting.

Please contact the Student Success Team for this program if you have any questions.

Sample Education Plan

This sample education plan represents one possible pathway through the program. Be advised that each university (UC, CSU, private, and others) has their own transfer requirements. Please see a counselor to create an education plan that is customized to meet your needs. Map is for reference only for the 2020-2021 catalog year. Please refer to the College Catalog (in pdf or flipbook format) for additional course descriptions.
Select sample path/map:
CourseUnitsTypically Offered
1st Semester
ASL 101 - American Sign Language I (RHC GE 7b)M4.5
ASL 101 - American Sign Language I (4.5 units)

Advisory: ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement; READ 043 or appropriate placement
Transfers to: UC, CSU

This course will provide an introduction to American Sign Language, emphasizing receptive and expressive skills. The use of facial expressions during signing will also be addressed. Students will be exposed to deaf culture experiences in the classroom and other environments. In addition to classroom discussion, students will receive intensive individualized practice in American Sign Language via interactive websites, video programs, and CD-ROMs. This course is designed for students who want to learn how to communicate with people who are deaf and hard of hearing.

ENGL 101 - College Composition and ResearchGE3.5
ENGL 101 - College Composition and Research (3.5 units)

Prerequisite: ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement
Transfers to: UC, CSU

This is a composition course that enables students to generate logical, coherent essays and reports necessary to academic and professional success. Students will become proficient in research techniques, learn critical reading and thinking skills through expository and persuasive reading selections, and apply these skills to creating original essays and a final research paper. The lab component of this course is designed to assist students in improving and refining their writing and language skills. Students will complete lab activities that enhance their ability to compose logical, well-supported arguments that exhibit grammatical fluency and correct documentation form. Students will meet with composition instructors through individual conferences that address students’ specific writing concerns. This course is designed for students who wish to fulfill the General Education requirement for Written Communication.

RHC GE 2 - Math CompetencyGE3.0†

† some classes may have higher units.
Select one:
Math 060 (F09), 062, 070 (F09), 070D, 072 (F10), 073, or 073B with a 'C' or better or higher level quantitative reasoning course or
Score of 3 or better on AP Calculus AB or BC or AP Statistics or RHC Proficiency Exam (Available in the MSCS-300) or
Score of 50 or higher on CLEP Calculus, College Algebra-Trig, or Trigonometry exam.

Note: Students intending to transfer should begin at transfer level math. Transfer math courses are numbered 100+. Please meet with a counselor to discuss course options.

RHC GE 8b - Communication/Analytical ThinkingGE3.0†

Notes:
All honors courses have a prerequisite.
† some classes may have higher units.

Select one:
CIT 101, 125, 135;
ENGL 125, 201, 201H;
FIN 101;
LIB 101;
MATH 130, 130H, 140, 150, 160, 170, 175, 180, 190, 190H, 191, 250, 260, 270;
PHIL 110, 110H, 112, 112H, 115;
PSY 190;
SPCH 100, 101, 101H, 140;
READ 101;
VOCB 101

Total Semester Units:14.0† 
2nd Semester
ASL 102 - Ameican SIign Language IIM4.5
ASL 102 - Ameican SIign Language II (4.5 units)

Prerequisite:ASL 101,(formerly ASL 149) or two years of high school ASL with a "C" or better or successfully pass an interview and comprehensive exam developed by the department demonstrating competency of the skills required in an ASL I course.
Advisory: ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement; READ 043 or appropriate placement
Transfers to: UC, CSU

This course will provide a continuation to American Sign Language I (ASL 101), emphasizing receptive and expressive skills. The use of facial expressions during signing will also be addressed. Students will be exposed to deaf culture experiences in the classroom and other environments. In addition to classroom discussion, students will receive intensive individualized practice in the language laboratory via interactive websites, video programs, and CD-ROMs. This course is designed for students who want to learn how to communicate with people who are deaf and hard of hearing.

ASL 120 - Introduction to Deaf StudiesM3.0
ASL 120 - Introduction to Deaf Studies (3.0 units)

PrerequisiteASL 101
Advisory: ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement; READ 043 or appropriate placement
Transfers to:CSU

This course introduces students to the basic information of the American Deaf experience in the United States: Deaf community/culture and American Sign Language. This course exposes students to the history, contributions and contemporary lives of Deaf people in America. This course is interdisciplinary in that it introduces a range of issues that are developed in the purview of Deaf Studies — linguistics, education, sociology, psychology and other fields. This course will be taught using a combination of ASL and spoken English and may or may not have interpreters facilitating the lectures depending on the instructor.

RHC GE 5 - Natural Science with LabGE4.0

Note: All honors courses have a prerequisite.

Select one Natural Science with Lab:
ANTH 101, 101H & 101L;
ASTR 110, 110H & 112;
BIOL 101, 105 & 105L, 111 & 111L, 112, 120 & 120L;
BIOT 100;
CHEM 110, 120, 130;
GEOG 101 & 101L;
GEOL 150 & 151;
PHY 120, 150, 160, 211, 212, 213

RHC GE 7a - Fine ArtsGE3.0

Note: All honors courses have a prerequisite.

Select one:
ART 101, 104, 105, 105H, 106, 106H, 107, 108, 109, 110, 112, 113, 115, 120, 130, 135, 140;
DANC 179, 179H, 199, 199H;
GDSN 110:
MUS 101, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 135, 136, 141;
MUST 151;
PHTO 130, 185;
THTR 101, 105, 105H, 110

Total Semester Units:14.5 
Summer 1
RHC GE 4 - American InstitutionsGE3.0

Note: All honors courses have a prerequisite.

Select one:
POLS 110, 110H;
HIST 143, 143H, 144, 144H, 156, 157, 158, 159, 159H, 170

RHC GE 3 - Physical EducationGE1.0

Select one: KINA or DANC activity course.
Students who have completed a Fire, Police, Wildland Fire, or Corrections Academy from an accredited institution are automatically waived from this requirement, as are students with a DD214 on file. Exemption may be granted to those students physically unable to complete this requirement. Exemption forms are available in Student Health & Psychological Services.

Total Semester Units:4.0 
3rd Semester
ASL 201 - American Sign Language IIIM4.5
ASL 201 - American Sign Language III (4.5 units)

Prerequisite: ASL 102
Advisory: ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement; READ 043 or appropriate placement
Transfers to: UC, CSU

This course will focus on refining students’ knowledge of the grammatical structure and lexicon of American Sign Language as these things relate to its historical, artistic, and cultural influence in mainstream society, with an emphasis on receptive/expressive conversational and cultural skills for communication. In addition to classroom discussion, students will receive intensive individualized practice in the language laboratory via interactive websites, video programs, and CD-ROMs.

ASL 124 - Deaf CultureM3.0
ASL 124 - Deaf Culture (3.0 units)

Prerequisite/Corequisite: ASL 102
Advisory: ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement; READ 043 or appropriate placement
Transfers to: CSU

This course will cover basic information and research on deaf culture, deaf children and their upbringing, deaf education, the importance of American Sign Language to the deaf community, deaf societies around the world, and advances in and usage of technology for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. The course will focus on research and progress within deaf culture. This course will be taught using a combination of American Sign Language and spoken English and, depending on the instructor, may or may not have interpreters facilitating the lectures.

ASL 250 - ASL LinguisticsM3.0
ASL 250 - ASL Linguistics (3.0 units)

Prerequisite: ASL 102
Advisory: ENGL 101
Transfers to: CSU

This course will serve as an introductory course in linguistics, with a special emphasis on American Sign Language (ASL). Students will learn basic linguistic concepts such as phonology, morphology, and syntax as they apply to all languages. Students will further their knowledge of linguistics as it relates specifically to ASL. No prior knowledge of linguistics is needed to take this course. Upon completion of this course students will be able to pursue careers related to Deaf education or ASL pedagogy. This course will be taught using a combination of ASL and spoken English and may or may not have interpreters facilitating the lectures depending on the instructor.

RHC GE 6 - Social and Behavioral ScienceGE3.0

Note: All honors courses have a prerequisite.

Select one:
AJ 101
ANTH 102, 102H, 103, 104, 110, 115, 125;
CD 106, 208;
CHST 101, 146, 148,150;
ECON 101, 101H, 102, 102H, 106, 135;
GEOG 102, 103;
HIST 101, 102, 122, 143, 143H, 144, 144H, 156, 157, 158, 159, 159H, 167, 170;
HUM 110, 111, 125, 125H, 130;
MSCM 128;
PHIL 128, 128H, 135;
POLS 110, 110H, 125, 128, 128H, 130, 135,140,150;
PSY 101, 101H, 112, 114;
SOC 101, 101H, 102, 105, 110, 114, 116, 120, 127, 130, 148;
SPCH 150

RHC GE 3 - Physical EducationGE1.0

Select one: KINA or DANC activity course.
Students who have completed a Fire, Police, Wildland Fire, or Corrections Academy from an accredited institution are automatically waived from this requirement, as are students with a DD214 on file. Exemption may be granted to those students physically unable to complete this requirement. Exemption forms are available in Student Health & Psychological Services.

Total Semester Units:14.5 
4th Semester
ASL 202 - American Sign Language IVM4.5
ASL 202 - American Sign Language IV (4.5 units)

Prerequisite: ASL 201
Advisory: ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement; READ 043 or appropriate placement
Transfers to:CSU

This course will provide a continuation to American Sign Language III (ASL 201). The course will focus on the use of American Sign Language in practical applications through discussing relevant topics like math, current events, arts, and various other topics, with an emphasis on applying the language in real world interactions. In addition to classroom discussion, students will receive intensive individualized practice in the language laboratory via interactive websites, video programs, and CD-ROMs.

ASL 270 - ASL LiteratureM3.0
ASL 270 - ASL Literature (3.0 units)

Prerequisite: ASL 201
Advisory:ASL 250; ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement; READ 043 or appropriate placement
Transfers to: CSU

This course will take students on a journey through the history and current status of the literary body of American Sign Language (ASL). This is a rare opportunity to explore a body of literature in its infancy stages. Students will analyze videos and books created or written by ASL poetic performers or authors. Word choices, deeper meanings, and metaphors used will be discussed. This course will be taught using a combination of ASL and spoken English and may or may not have interpreters facilitating the lectures depending on the instructor.

ASL 280 - ASL StorytellingM2.0
ASL 280 - ASL Storytelling (2.0 units)

Prerequisite: ASL 124, ASL 201
Advisory: ENGL 035 or ENLA 100 or appropriate placement; READ 043 or appropriate placement
Transfers to: CSU

This course is designed to further refine the student's knowledge and mastery of American Sign Language (ASL) through the practical application of storytelling. Students will study master storytellers and analyze their techniques. Upon completion of this course, students will have created multiple original stories in ASL. These are necessary skills to achieve fluency in ASL.

ElectiveEL3.0

Select any course that is numbered 40 or above. Please see a counselor to discuss course options.

ElectiveEL3.0

Select any course that is numbered 40 or above. Please see a counselor to discuss course options.

Total Semester Units:15.5 
Total Units for American Sign Language/Deaf Studies AA program 62.5† 
Notes:
Some classes may have higher units
MMajor course; course may also meet a general education requirement
GEGeneral Education course
ELElective Course
† Some classes may have higher units.
** this course has prerequisite, please click on course name to view.
GE = General Education Course. Some of these courses also meet degree requirements. Please see a counselor to find out which ones meet both the general education and degree requirement
M = Major Course
EL = Elective Course

Advising Sheet:
Deaf-Studies-20-21.pdf
   

Program Learning Outcomes

1

Students will demonstrate a high level confidence in communicating using ASL in all environments.


2

Students will have an in-depth knowledge of the Deaf culture and community, and will be able to apply this knowledge in social, professional, and academic settings.


3

Students will meet the entrance expectations for a bachelor degree in Deaf studies in fields such as Deaf education.


Gainful Employment Disclosures

  • This program is designed to be completed in ______
  • This program will cost $______ if completed within normal time (including books, materials, and additional fees). There may be additional costs for living expenses. These costs were accurate at the time of posting, but are subject to change.
  • Of the students who completed this program within normal time, the typical graduate leaves with $0* of debt. *Fewer than 10 students completed this program within normal time. This number has been withheld to preserve the confidentiality of the students.
  • License Requirements. This program qualifies students to sit for licensure exam in California.

For more information about graduation rates, loan repayment rates, and post-enrollment earnings about this institution and other postsecondary institutions please click here: https://collegescorecard.ed.gov/

Labor Market Information in California

Salary

not avaiable
not available

Career Growth

not available
n/a
Career Growth

Annual Avg Openings

not available

n/a
Annual Avg Openings
Source: Employment Development Department (EDD), State of California.

About RHC

Rio Hondo College, serving the communities of El Monte, Pico Rivera, Santa Fe Springs, South El Monte, and Whittier for over 50 years.

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Rio Hondo College
3600 Workman Mill Road
Whittier, CA 90601

Phone: (562) 692-0921
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