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News and Public Information Office
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Miami University
Oxford, Ohio 45056
(513) 529-7592
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Miami alumnus to speak on ASL variations and conflicting ideologies


Joseph Hill (Miami '01) a coordinator of the American Sign Language (ASL) Teacher Licensure program, will present "When Worlds Collide: Insights at the Intersection of the Deaf, Disability, and Dominant Cultures" at 7 p.m., Tuesday, April 10, in 1000 Farmer School of Business.

Hill’s presentation is part of the Kate Welling Disability Awareness Lecture Series. The talk is free and open to the public.

Hill, an assistant professor in the specialized educational services department at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, was born deaf and raised in Cincinnati.

The lecture will explore language attitudes toward signing variation in the American deaf community that are a result of exposure to a variety of communication modes besides ASL. While ASL is independent of English, the signing variation has led to conflicting ideologies about ASL and English in the American deaf community.

The American deaf community is a cultural and linguistic minority. A specific focus of Hill’s research is on the black deaf community. Black ASL has been confirmed as a dialect of ASL based on social and geographical factors and linguistics features.

Hill earned his bachelor of science in systems analysis from Miami University in 2001 and his doctorate degree in ASL linguistics from Gallaudet University in 2011. He has worked as a National Science Foundation Graduate Research fellow, a Fulbright scholar in Italy, an adjunct linguistics instructor at Gallaudet University, a summer instructor of the deaf studies department in the Siena School for Liberal Arts in Italy and a research assistant in the Gallaudet Research Institute and the Black ASL research team.

The lecture series is endowed by the parents of Kate Welling, a Miami student who died in an off-campus fire in April 2005. It is co-sponsored by the office of equity and equal opportunity/office of disability resources; department of speech pathology and audiology; office of student wellness; and Bernard B. Rinella, Jr. Learning Center.


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