[ipsl] B.A. in Applied Sign Lg Studies at IGNOU

  • From: tanmoy <tanmoy.bhattacharya@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: ipsl@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 4 Sep 2009 22:17:44 +0530

We had to postpone the first workshop slated for Aug 28th, one reason
being the launch of the B.A. in Applied Sign Lg Studies at IGNOU
recently. I am pasting the news release for the recent event:

September 2009
For immediate distribution

India’s first sign language course for deaf students launched by
University of Central Lancashire in New Delhi

03 September 2009 - The International Centre for Sign Languages and
Deaf Studies (iSLanDS Centre) at the University of Central Lancashire
(UCLan), and its Indian partner, Indira Gandhi National Open
University (IGNOU), today launched an unprecedented new sign language
programme in New Delhi. The new course will benefit the professional
education of deaf students both in India and across the world.

The Indian programme includes a university preparatory “Year Zero”
course, which will lead on to the first-ever BA degree in Applied Sign
Language Studies. Taught in India, the innovative programme is
specifically adapted to the needs of deaf sign language users.

The initial cohort of more than 30 deaf students includes not only
Indians, but also people from Uganda, Nepal and China who will all
earn both Indian and British qualifications.

Professor Ulrike Zeshan, Director of the iSLanDS Centre at UCLan,
said: "Our vision is for deaf students in developing countries to gain
professional qualifications at a university level. For the first time,
deaf communities will then be able to speak with a voice of authority
on matters that concern them, empowering the entire deaf community.”

She added: "We are very keen for the BA programme to be international
right from the beginning. Therefore, we have provided a number of
scholarships for both Indian and international students through the
Deaf Empowerment Foundation."

Today’s launch function was attended by IGNOU’s academic leaders,
including the Vice-Chancellor, Professor V. N. Rajasekharan Pillai,
who pledged his complete support for an “innovative and truly
international programme”.

At the launch, the audience watched as the students introduced
themselves in sign language, translated by a sign language
interpreter. One generous member of the audience, recognising the
value of the new programme, declared her intention to sponsor two
students for the entire length of the course.

Congratulating the academic heads of the UK-Indian collaboration
Professor Zeshan and Professor Ramanujam, the IGNOU Vice-Chancellor
added: “I am convinced that this will be a world class programme, from
which the whole world will benefit.”

Sibaji Panda, the first deaf Indian to study for a PhD in sign
language linguistics and course leader for the new programme, said:
“In India, most sign language tutors have no formal university
qualifications and most teachers in deaf schools do not have any sign
language qualifications. To address this, we intend to admit 40
students annually onto the BA course from next year onwards.”

The iSLanDS Centre and IGNOU are jointly developing a vision for a
Deaf College, where Indian and international deaf students can study a
range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses within a sign language
environment that is fully accessible for them.

Ends    -

Notes to editors
The iSLanDS Centre in the International School for Communities, Right
and Inclusion is an international hub for sign language research in
Preston, UK, and mainly works with partners in South Asia, sub-Saharan
Africa, and the Middle East.
Further details about the iSLanDS Centre are available at
www.uclan.ac.uk/islands For more information about the BA Applied Sign
Language Studies, contact spanda@xxxxxxxxxxxx To find out more about
the Deaf Empowerment Foundation and the scholarships, go to

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has developed an enviable
reputation as an institution that innovates, evolving its course
portfolio to over 500 undergraduate programmes and 180 postgraduate
courses.  The University has an established research reputation within
the areas of Business, Health, Humanities and Science. In the recent
Research Assessment Exercise, all 17 subject areas submitted were
rated as containing research of international excellence while 11
areas were assessed to be undertaking research which is world-leading.
 With approximately 32,000 students, the University indirectly
contributes close to £250 million into the regional economy every
year. UCLan is currently in the process of spending more than £120
million on new buildings and facilities to support teaching, learning
and leisure activities.

For more information, please contact:
Ross Whittam
T: 020 7067 0344
E: rwhittam@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Indo-pakistani Sign Language List
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