In Switzerland, there is a comparative lack of research in D/deaf Studies and sign language sociolinguistics. As minority languages, Swiss sign languages have not been sufficiently researched to date and we are missing valuable knowledge about the cultural and social conditions of Swiss D/deaf communities. This course offers students an introduction to the fields of Sign Language Sociolinguistics and D/deaf Studies, provides an overview of current international research on language issues in D/deaf communities, and introduces students to the specific situation of D/deaf communities in Switzerland.

Course content is delivered by two events:

  • Half-day seminar on Friday 4 November (13:00-18:00) covering sign languages and D/deaf communities in Switzerland. A series of invited presenters will summarize current research on the history of D/deaf communities in Switzerland, the political and legal situation in the country, the positioning of D/deaf students in the Swiss education system, and questions of Swiss D/deaf identity.
  • Two-Day international workshop on Friday 18 and Saturday 19 November (9:30-18:00) featuring 11 invited D/deaf sociolinguistics from Europe and North America who will present their ongoing research on issues of access for D/deaf individual to public services, the vitality and acquisition of sign languages, multilingualism in D/deaf communities and D/deaf identity.

Presentations will be delivered in English, American Sign Language, International Sign or Deutschschweizer Gebärdensprache (DSGS). Interpretation between these languages will be available.








Soziologie, Linguistik


Universitäre Hochschulen (UH)