By June 2012, the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf will require a BA degree as one of the criteria for RID certification. At Gallaudet, we will give you the career edge. We are the only university in the world that offers both an undergraduate and a graduate degree in ASL-English Interpretation.

Gallaudet's award-winning interactive interpretation laboratory will prepare you for a high-demand interpreting career through hands-on training in a variety of legal, medical, business, education, and government settings. Video and audio equipment in laboratory provide capabilities for ongoing self-evaluation through the recording and editing of complex video sequences. Additionally, you'll be immersed on campus in the language and culture of deaf people. The ASL-English interpretation BA Program (BAI) is open to hearing, hard of hearing, and deaf students.

As a BA Interpretation (BAI) degree-seeking student, you will have the opportunity to:

  • gain academic knowledge from experienced professors and professional interpreters in the field of interpreting,
  • use the interactive and sophisticated interpretation laboratory,
  • obtain and expand internship and work experience,
  • live, study, and interact with deaf people from the US and around the world, and
  • increase your understanding of Deaf Culture, history and networking.

Academic components:

  1. A four-year format; 39 credits in the BA ASL-English Interpretation major; and supporting courses in Deaf Studies, biology, business, communication studies, linguistics, and sociology are taken,
  2. Various and/or customized interpreting internship options fitting student's goals are available, and
  3. A comprehensive, sequenced, and integrated series of courses and experiences that are intended to provide students with knowledge, fieldwork, techniques and interpreting skills in interactive interpreting in legal, education, medical, business, and government settings.

Steps for admission into the BAI program:

1 - You must apply for admission to the BAI program by completing the following items:

  • Gallaudet University Undergraduate Application form for deaf/hard of hearing applicants or Hearing Undergraduate Application form for hearing applicants
  • $50 Application Fee
  • Three Personal Essays
  • Two letters of recommendation, with one letter citing ASL skills
  • An ASLPI score of 3.0 or higher
  • Official transcript with a 2.75 or higher cumulative grade point average (for high school students, send HS Transcript; for currently enrolled college students, send college transcript)
  • ACT (American College Test) or SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) Scores (can be waived if you have 12 college credits for English and Math courses)

2 - After submitting the application, you will get instructions with a Language Performance Screening DVD from the Interpretation Department.  You will be provided with an in-person or VP ASL and English language interviews with the BAI Admissions committee.  You must identify a location with a VP and send the VP number to Melba Goodwin, Admissions Counselor for BAI students at

3 - Applicants are also required to schedule an American Sign Language Proficiency Interview (ASLPI), a video recorded evaluation which will determine the applicant's overall ASL proficiency. The ASLPI can be taken "in person" at Gallaudet or via videophone from an approved location. The ASLPI evaluation system is housed in ASL Diagnostic and Evaluation Services (ASL-DES) at Gallaudet University. See this website for more information To schedule an ASLPI, send email to There is a fee to take the ASLPI. Please check the web site for current ASLPI fee information.

4 - Once admitted you will not be able to change your BAI major if you are a hearing student unless you reapply to the Hearing Undergraduate Program (HUG). Deaf students admitted to the program may change their major without reapplying to the University, as there is no mandated "cap" for deaf students at Gallaudet.

For more information about the application procedures and/or the BAI program, please check out the web links below:

Undergraduate application for deaf and hard of hearing applicants

Hearing Undergraduate (HUG) application for hearing applicants

Interpretation department website

Expand Your Skills
  • Immerse yourself in Deaf Culture
  • Increase your English vocabulary
  • Become fluent in ASL
  • Pursue a minor in ASL or Linguistics
  • Develop strong communication skills
  • Join organizations for the deaf
  • Communicate with deaf people at work or in social settings
Career Options
  • American Sign Language Interpreter
  • ASL Patient Care Coordinator
  • Certification Manager
  • Certification Specialist
  • Communications Manager
  • Education Specialist
  • Health Care Interpreter
  • Project Specialist
  • Scientific Interpreter
  • Translator
Professional Organizations
  • National Association of the Deaf
  • Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf
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