Healthcare Sign Language Minor

Sign Language Minor

The Language of Care

With a minor in Healthcare Sign Language, you'll be able to communicate with patients who might otherwise struggle to find an advocate. By emphasizing compassion through language, you'll break down the communication barriers that can hinder the patient experience. This valuable skill could allow you to stand out to potential employers.

All students seeking a bachelor's degree from Nebraska Methodist College are eligible to take the Healthcare Sign Language minor. Over the course of 18 credit hours and six semesters, you'll learn critical vocabulary that includes some of the most common terms needed to sustain an ongoing dialogue with a Deaf/hard-of-hearing patient. These practical communication skills will allow you to translate important care instructions to the patient and help the patient express his or her needs to their healthcare provider team.

Advantages of the Healthcare Sign Language minor:

  • Online bachelor's degree completion students are eligible; however, they must be able to come to campus for those courses that take place offline
  • Provides students with a vocabulary based on ASL (American Sign Language)
  • In addition to enhancing communications, coursework will provide a cultural and ethical emphasis that fosters compassionate, holistic healthcare

Course Sequence

The Sign Language for Healthcare Professionals minor requires COM 245 as a pre-requisite.

COM 262 American Sign Language Basic Skills - 3 credit hours

This course deals with the ASL skills that anyone in healthcare will need to conduct basic communicationwith people who are Deaf. Some study of Deaf culture is included.

  • Offered most Fall semesters
  • On-campus course delivery
  • Meets two times each week during semester

COM 267 American Sign Language Vocabulary  - 3 credit hours

This course builds on students' basic skills in everyday, healthcare-related communication with people who are Deaf. Content about Deaf culture is included, and this deepens the potential for meaningful interactions.

  • Offered most Spring semesters
  • On-campus course delivery
  • Meets two times each week during semester

COM 272 American Sign Language Advanced Vocabulary  - 3 credit hours

In this course, students learn vocabulary in American Sign Language that is broader in scope than the vocabulary needed for medical and healthcare interactions, which was learned in COM262 and COM267.

  • Offered most Summer semesters
  • On-campus course delivery 
  • Meets three times each week during summer term

COM 362 American Sign Language Linguistics - 3 credit hours

In this course, students will adopt a focus that is both deeper and broader than the focus of prior courses in NMC's Sign Language Minor program. More specific rules of American Sign Language and broader attention to Deaf culture will result in even more useful learning.

  • Offered most Fall semesters
  • On-campus course delivery
  • Meets two times each week during semester

COM 367 American Sign Language Deaf Culture - 3 credit hours

This course focuses less on expressive and receptive skills in the use of American Sign Language and much more on norms and debates about and within Deaf culture, as well as relevant cultural values and theories.

  • Offered most Spring semesters
  • On-campus course delivery
  • Meets two times each week during semester

COM 372 Strategies of Communication & Ethics in Healthcare - 3 credit hours

This hybrid course includes an internship with members of a Deaf community; students also study Deaf people's rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the relevant healthcare resources that are available to people who are Deaf.

  • Offered most Summer semesters
  • Hybrid course delivery

How To Declare Your Minor

  • Current Students, please contact your advisor for assistance in registering for the Healthcare Sign Language minor
  • New Students - please contact Admissions

Alternately, you may also fill out the Attached form.

Undergraduate Minor Interest Form

Questions

For questions about the Healthcare Sign Language minor, contact:

Marlin Schaich
Marlin Schaich
Professor
marlin.schaich@methodistcollege.edu
402.354.7062