ARC Deaf Culture ASL Studies
American Sign Language (ASL) is a visual language. With signing, the brain processes linguistic information through the eyes. The shape, placement, and movement of the hands, as well as facial expressions and body movements, all play important parts in conveying information.
Sign language is not a universal language -- each country has its own sign language, and regions have dialects, much like the many languages spoken all over the world. Like any spoken language, ASL is a language with its own unique rules of grammar and syntax. Like all languages, ASL is a living language that grows and changes over time.
ASL is used predominantly in the United States and in many parts of Canada. ASL is accepted by many high schools, colleges, and universities in fulfillment of modern and "foreign" language academic degree requirements across the United States. (www.nad.org)
Deaf Culture is the heart of the Deaf community everywhere in the world. Language and culture are inseparable. They are intertwined and passed down through generations of Deaf people.
The Deaf community is not based on geographic proximity like Chinatown or the Italian District for example. The Deaf community is comprised of culturally Deaf people in the core of the community who use a sign language (e.g. American Sign Language or Langue des Signes Quebecois) and appreciate their heritage, history, literature, and culture.
The Deaf community is also comprised of other individuals who use the language and have an attitude that makes them an accepted part of the community though they may not be in the core of the community. It exists because of the need to get together, the need to relax and enjoy everything while being together.
Deaf culture exists because Deaf people who are educated at residential Deaf schools develop their own Deaf network once they graduate, to keep in touch with everyone. Most of them go on to take on leadership positions in the Deaf community, organize Deaf sports, community events, etc. and become the core of the Deaf community. They ensure that their language and heritage are passed to other peers and to the next generation. They also form links with parents and siblings of Deaf children to strengthen and enlarge the community circle for Deaf children. (www.deafculturecentre.ca)
If you have taken ASL courses at another institution, make an appointment with an ARC counselor to see if the course is transferrable.
ASL - IPP Lab
Mondays: 10:00 AM - 2:30 PM
Tuesdays: 3:15 to 8:30 PM
Wednesdays: 10:00 AM - 2:30 PM
Thursdays: 3:15 to 8:30 PM
Davies Hall 213
I joined MESA in 2010, almost as soon as I started at ARC with my first calculus class. It was where I went between classes to work on my homework and meet with all of the other students taking the core STEM classes we needed to work through to transfer to the UC of our choice.
MESA was a place for me to network and to receive the general higher education navigation advice that I could not receive otherwise as a first-generation college student. I obtained invaluable personalized guidance and attention from Dr. Will and Mathew Register.
Prior to transferring to UC Davis as a nutritional biology major, I was also fortunate enough to be able to contribute to — as well as further learn from — MESA, first as a tutor and then as a program assistant.
I am currently an M.D. candidate at St. George's University School of Medicine and have just completed my first term with a scholarship.
The support I received from the facilities at MESA has carried me to where I am, and my friendships and networks from within the MESA family have persisted and have been a blessing I could not have otherwise obtained.