Sign Language Interpreting Major


The Sign Language Interpreting major at Goshen College will introduce you to the rich language and culture of the Deaf community. You will learn American Sign Language (ASL) and interpreting techniques, along with an understanding of Deaf culture, and the role of interpreters.

Learn to Interpret Between Deaf and Hearing Communities in Diverse Settings

Sign language interpreting is a dynamic and exciting profession that allows students to be a communication bridge between members of Deaf and hearing communities in places as diverse as hospitals, schools, courtrooms, concerts, plays, or sporting events.

As professional interpreters, you could work in a staff position at a school or agency or be self-employed, setting your own schedule. Sign language interpreting is one of the most challenging and rewarding careers you could choose!

On campus you will have many opportunities to practice interpreting in low risk situation such as:
  • chapel/convocation
  • classes – no Deaf student, practice only
  • club events and meetings
  • informational meetings

Learn American Sign Language (ASL)

The sign language interpreting major at Goshen College will introduce you American Sign Language (ASL). We then use those language skills to teach you how to interpret between spoken English and American Sign Language or signed English.

Our sign language interpreting program’s small class sizes will allow you to work closely with your professors and peers in a rigorous but supportive setting. With this support, you will be well prepared to begin your interpreting career and gain state licensure.

Gain the Interpreting Skills Needed for Rewarding Careers

In our sign language interpreting program, you’ll learn ASL and interpreting techniques, along with an understanding of professional conduct, and the role of interpreters in community and educational settings.

You will also find many opportunities to practice your ASL skills outside the classroom as you attend various events, including:

  • Workshops
  • Deaf church
  • Deaf sporting events
  • Other local community events


The capstone for the SLI program is a 12 week internship where you will work alongside professional interpreters through a school or interpreting agency.

Learn more about our distinctive capstone internships.

Would You Rather Teach Than Interpret?

Would you like to work with the Deaf community in another capacity?

Our Deaf Studies major will prepare you to work in an educational setting as a tutor, teaching assistant, or in an after school program.  Or you may prepare to work in the community as a case manager, job coach, or advocate.

And if you would like to be licensed to teach ASL you can double major in Deaf Studies and Secondary Education.

Become an Interpreter with our help!

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Major & Minor Options

We offer a several majors and minors options in the Sign Language field. You don’t need to choose one today (just inquire about Sign Language below), but you will be asked to select a particular major/minor when you apply to Goshen College.

Sign Language Interpreting Major

The Sign Language Interpreting major focuses specifically on how to become a professional sign language interpreter.  You will study ASL and Deaf History, Ethics, as well as classes to learn how to interpret in general and also classes that specialize in Medical Interpreting, Sign to Voice Interpreting, and Transliterating (focusing on Educational Interpreting).  There are also elective classes related to Performance Interpreting and Specialty Areas of Interpreting (Legal, Mental Health, DeafBlind, Atypical Signers).

Deaf Studies Major

The Deaf studies major at Goshen College will introduce you to the rich language and culture of the Deaf community. You will then use your American Sign Language skills through one of two tracks: a social work focus or an education focus.

American Sign Language Minor

A minor in ASL is great to pair with many majors.  By studying ASL you would be able to sign directly to any Deaf students or clients you might work with as a teacher, accountant, social worker, nurse and many other majors.

Students & Alumni

Faculty & Staff

Colleen Geier

Program Director and Professor of Sign Language Interpreting

Damon Johnson

Damon Johnson

Adjunct Professor of Sign Language Interpreting

Diana Boussom

Instructor of American Sign Language