The world of Sign Language
Sign languages from all around the world demonstrate interesting similarities, but they are not mutually intelligible and differ from each other in significant ways. Interestingly, many of these differences reflect variation also attested in spoken languages. The acquisition of sign languages also shows interesting similarities and differences with the acquisition of spoken languages. The Bachelor's in Sign Language Linguistics teaches you general linguistic principles and methods and offers you a wide range of courses in sign languages that address these fascinating topics.
Is Sign Language Linguistics right for you?
Sign Language Linguistics is the ideal programme for you if:
- You are broadly interested in language and sign language specifically.
- You enjoy solving puzzles and problems that require a systematic approach.
- You want to understand how sign languages resemble or differ from spoken languages as well as each other.
- You’d like to learn a sign language yourself.
- You would like to know how sign languages are acquired, and how they function in society.
'People seem to expect that you can communicate all over the world by knowing a single, universal sign language, but just as every country has a spoken language, every country has its own sign language.' - Livia Faverey, Sign Language Linguistics student
Read the interview with Livia Faverey
Read the interview with Door Spruijt
Why study Sign Language Linguistics at the UvA?
Sign Language Linguistics at the University of Amsterdam offers you:
- The unique opportunity to study sign language linguistics: the University of Amsterdam is one of the few universities in the world to offer a fully-fledged programme with a focus on the structure, acquisition, and use of visual-gestural languages.
- A world-class education: the Linguistics programme is ranked highest in Continental Europe and 15th overall according to the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2019.
- A chance to learn and study Sign Language of the Netherlands (NGT). If you have acquired another sign language elsewhere, you can bring your knowledge of it into the programme.
- A broad programme: the Sign Language Linguistics programme is a track of the Linguistics programme, which is a very broad programme that familiarises you with all subfield of linguistics.
- Amsterdam has a thriving community of signers of NGT with many social activities.
- After completing your Bachelor's, you can apply to one of the UvA's many Master's programmes.
Sign Language Linguistics is an accredited degree programme in Linguistics. After completion of this programme, you will receive a legally accredited Bachelor's degree and the title Bachelor of Arts (BA).