Brenda Chafin Seal Ph.D.
  • Ph.D. in Communication Disorders, 1992, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA
  • M.A. in Speech Pathology, 1975, Appalachian State University, Boone, NC
  • B.S. in Speech Pathology and Audiology, 1972, Appalachian State University, Boone, NC
Short Biography

Brenda Seal is a Professor and Director of Speech-Language Pathology in the Department. She teaches courses in aural rehabilitation and research methods for both Audiology and SLP. She also teaches a doctoral course in HSLS, an undergraduate course in speechreading, and for the University's interdisciplianry Infant-Toddler-Family (ITF) online graduate certificate program.  Brenda joined the faculty in 2009; she is a Professor Emerita at James Madison University where she taught for 28 years in the Communication Sciences and Disorders Department. She also worked for 8 years as a classroom teacher and SLP at the Virginia School for the Deaf and Blind in Staunton. Brenda is a nationally certified member of the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, a licensed member and fellow of the Speech and Hearing Association of Virginia, and a certified member and fellow of the American speech-Language-Hearing Association.


Sign phonology; Manual activity in babies; Speech and sign acquisition in pediatric implant population; Fingerspelling encoding and decoding; Teaching practices in higher education; Anatomy & physiology; Neuroanatomy; Educational interpreting

Research Interests:  Brenda's research interests are in infant sign language perception, Baby Signing with hearing infants, and spoken and sign language acquisition in deaf children and in hearing children of deaf parents. Brenda is also interested in fingerspelling research and in evidenced-based practices in educational interpreting. 




Licensure in Speech-language pathology from Virginia
CSC (1976) and EIPA (2007) from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc.

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