Developing Online Training for Deaf Language Specialists: DOTDeaf
DOTDeaf project develops learning opportunities for Deaf adults, Deaf Language Specialists (DLSs), and co-working Speech and Language Therapists.
DOTDeaf is an Erasmus+ funded project involving partners in the UK, Spain, Portugal and Brazil. Led by Prof Rosalind Herman and Dr Joanna Hoskin at City, University of London, the project has developed learning opportunities to a specific group of Deaf adults, Deaf Language Specialists (DLSs), and co-working Speech and Language Therapists.
DLSs work with deaf children and adults in educational, social and health settings. DLSs are a small group with specialist skills. They sometimes work without other Deaf colleagues doing similar work.
A PhD study by Hoskin (2017) showed DLSs often have few specific qualifications and limited access to training for the work they do to support children (or adults) with language learning difficulties. Often people start this work because they are fluent in sign language. This means they must develop their skills and knowledge about language development as they work. They may not have the opportunity to learn from and share their knowledge with others. This is inefficient and results in staff lacking confidence in their skills.
Sharing information about language (typical and atypical development) gives a stronger foundation for their work. DLSs and Speech and Language Therapists (SLT) often do not have a shared vocabulary to discuss language and communication issues. This may also be an issue with other colleagues, who are mainly hearing professionals.
Over 40 DLSs in the UK and partner countries helped with the development and piloting of the DOTDeaf training course. The course includes six online modules in BSL/English which are free to access. Modules have also been adapted by our project partners to LSE/Spanish, LGP/Portuguese and Libras/Portuguese.
Try the course
Updated modules available here soon.
The training modules developed as part of the DOTDeaf project are freely available. More links to resources in English/BSL, Portuguese/LGP, and Spanish/LSE will be added here soon.
We are keen to support adaptations to other written and signed languages. If you are interested in adapting any modules, please let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kindly acknowledge our work in your modules by including the following text: This work/module is based on original work by Joanna Hoskin and Ros Herman as part of the Erasmus + DOTDeaf project (2021).