Deafness and Communication

Subject EDUC20069 (2012)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2012.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2012:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 24 hours
Total Time Commitment:

125 hours

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

Attendance at all classes (tutorial/seminars/practical classes/lectures/labs) is obligatory. Failure to attend 80% of classes will normally result in failure in the subject.


Dr Linda Byrnes


Education Student Centre Subject

Subject Overview:

This subject will explore deafness from a wide range of perspectives including social, cultural, and technological. It will examine deafness from a linguistic and cultural view to gain insight into human communication and the relationship between culture and language. This subject will investigate the impact of deafness on communication, literacy, social development, access and equity, and also consider how technology impacts on the lives of people who are deaf. The rapid changes in technology and its impact on communication will be discussed. Other topics covered will include a brief introduction to sign language, bilingual approaches to learning, deaf culture, the cochlear implant, the development of spoken language in deaf children, and deafness and ageing.

  • Understand the central role of communication in society and that deafness primarily impacts upon communication;
  • Develop an understanding of the full range of perspectives of deafness, including medical, social and cultural;
  • Understand the benefits and limitations of technology in the lives of deaf people;
  • Compare the range of educational approaches available to children and young people who are deaf and consider the implications of these for academic and social development.

There are two pieces of assessment:

  • one practical assignment due mid-semester;(50%);
  • one 2000 word essay due during the examination period (50%).
Prescribed Texts:

Course readings will be provided.

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

Students will

  • understand how deafness impacts on language development and culture;
  • experience the implications of deafness for communication development;
  • learn some basic Auslan skills;
  • discuss the advantages and disadvantages of different perspectives on deafness.

Download PDF version.