Fast Facts


800 Florida Avenue, NE
Washington, DC 20002-3695


Gallaudet University, the world's only university in which all programs and services are specifically designed to accommodate deaf and hard of hearing students, was founded in 1864 by an Act of Congress (its Charter), which was signed into law by President Abraham Lincoln.

University Mission Statement:

Gallaudet University, federally chartered in 1864, is a bilingual, diverse, multicultural institution of higher education that ensures the intellectual and professional advancement of deaf and hard of hearing individuals through American Sign Language and English. Gallaudet maintains a proud tradition of research and scholarly activity and prepares its graduates for career opportunities in a highly competitive, technological, and rapidly changing world.

Approved by the Board of Trustees, November 2007

Vision Statement:

Gallaudet University will build upon its rich history as the world's premier higher education institution serving deaf and hard of hearing people to become the university of first choice for the most qualified, diverse group of deaf and hard of hearing students in the world, as well as hearing students pursuing careers related to deaf and hard of hearing people. Gallaudet will empower its graduates with the knowledge and practical skills vital to achieving personal and professional success in the changing local and global communities in which they live and work. Gallaudet will also strive to become the leading international resource for research, innovation and outreach related to deaf and hard of hearing people.

Gallaudet will achieve these outcomes through:

  • A bilingual learning environment, featuring American Sign Language and English, that provides full access for all students to learning and communication
  • A commitment to excellence in learning and student service
  • A world-class campus in the nation's capital
  • Creation of a virtual campus that expands Gallaudet's reach to a broader audience of visual learners
  • An environment in which research can grow, develop, and improve the lives and knowledge of all deaf and hard of hearing people worldwide.

Approved by the Board of Trustees, May 2009

Executive Team: 

See the bottom of the page for the listing of the Executive Team and their respective websites.

Board of Trustees

The Gallaudet University Board of Trustees, whose members serve on a volunteer basis, has the authority to make University-wide policy including financial and academic policies. The board is also responsible for ensuring the proper management of the University and actively participating in the provision of necessary funds. Gallaudet's trustees have an active role in supporting advancement activities by working with the University administration to set fundraising targets, approve campaign priorities, and contribute to fundraising activities through identification of prospects, monetary or in-kind donations, and service.

Gallaudet University Executive Committee:

Chair – Tiffany Williams, '89
Vice Chair - Claire Bugen
Secretary – Duane Halliburton, '85
Member-at-Large – Seth Bravin, '96
Member-at-Large – Jeffrey L. Humber, Jr.
Dr. Linda Campbell
Jose "Pepe" Cervantes, '05
Jameson Crane, Jr.
Dr. Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera

Dr. Charlene Dwyer
Claudia L. Gordon, Esq.
Gregory L. Hlibok, Esq., '90
Dr. Philip F. Kerstetter, PhD '85
Nancy Kelly-Jones, '72 & G-'75
James R. Macfadden, '62
Wilma Newhoudt-Druchen, '92, G-'05, & H-'09
Dr. Gina A. Oliva, G-'77
James F.X. Payne

Voting trustees public members:

The Honorable Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio)
The Honorable G.K. Butterfield (D-North Carolina)
The Honorable Kevin Yoder (R-Kansas)


Deaf and hard of hearing undergraduates can choose from more than 40 majors leading to a bachelor of arts or bachelor of science degree. The University also admits a small number of hearing, degree-seeking undergraduate students—six percent limit for FY 2014, seven percent limit for FY 2015, and eight percent limit for FY 2016. Undergraduate students also have the option of designing their own majors, called “self-directed majors,” in which they select classes from a variety of departments at Gallaudet or take courses offered at 12 other institutions of higher learning that are members of the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area.

Graduate programs, open to deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing students, include a master of arts and a master of science degree, specialist degree, certificates, and doctoral degrees in a variety of fields involving professional service provision to deaf and hard of hearing people. Gallaudet University offers exemplary educational programs to deaf and hard of hearing students at all learning levels. The Kendall Demonstration Elementary School (KDES) serves infants and their parents and continues service through the eighth grade. The Model Secondary School for the Deaf (MSSD) offers programs for students in grades nine through 12. Both of these schools [KDES and MSSD] are part of the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center, which has a federal mandate to serve the nation by developing and disseminating innovative curriculum, materials, and teaching strategies to schools and programs nationwide.


Gallaudet is a leader in uses of technology in its academic programs and services. Approximately 94 percent of courses at Gallaudet have an online component and nearly all students take at least one course using an online learning system. Such technology integration is higher than the average of universities nationwide. Many courses make extensive use of video, including video recordings of classes. Students are encouraged to bring a computer to campus, and popular software is available at a discounted price.

For students interested in technology careers, majors in graphic arts, digital media, computer science, and computer information systems are available. Students have access to two central computer labs, as well as more than 15 departmental computer labs. Most classrooms are outfitted with computers and the latest technologies. All buildings on campus have wireless network access.


Gallaudet is committed to serving the world as the epicenter of research, development, and outreach leading to advancements in knowledge and practice for deaf and hard of hearing people and all humanity. Faculty, often alongside students, pursue a full range of research interests related to their academic disciplines. Through collaboration and grant writing, research at Gallaudet takes place in academic departments, as well as Gallaudet's dedicated research units:

  • The National Science Foundation's Science of Learning Center on Visual Language and Visual Learning advances learning involving how aspects of higher cognition are realized through vision.
  • The Brain and Language Laboratory for Neuroimaging conducts neuroimaging and behavioral studies that provide knowledge about biological mechanisms and environmental factors that make possible the human capacity to learn and convey language and achieve reading mastery.
  • The Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Technology for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is a national project funded by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research in the Administration of Community Living. The objective of the project is to conduct research programs that promote technological solutions to problems confronting people who are deaf or hard of hearing.
  • The Technology Access Program conducts research related to communication technologies and services, with the goal of producing knowledge useful to industry, government, and deaf and hard of hearing consumers in the quest for equality in communications.
  • The Drs. John S. and Betty J. Schuchman Deaf Documentary Center educates students in the documentary arts, explores the lives of deaf people, and cultivates awareness of human diversity through shared fieldwork, stories, and scholarship. The Gallaudet University Museum, which collaborates with the Schuchman Center, presents the heritage of the evolving Deaf community and traces the historic roots of the University.

An online database, "Research and Scholarly Achievement at Gallaudet University,", provides full access to a wide range of research projects and scholarly and creative achievements, including publications, presentations, exhibits, and performances by the University community.

In addition, the Research Support component of the Office of Research Support and International Affairs supports researchers by providing editorial assistance for research grant proposals by early-career researchers, particularly those for whom English is not their native language; making available methodological consultation for faculty and staff to facilitate all phases of their research; maintaining REDCap, a robust scientific data collection tool that is available free of charge for anyone on campus; facilitating scholarly opportunities through the International Visiting Researcher Program, which accommodates a limited number of professors, researchers, and specialists from other countries at Gallaudet each year; and promoting the University's research through the Research at Gallaudet newsletter and the annual Research Expo.

Research Support also oversees the Priority Research and Small Grants programs, provides access to the archived Annual Survey of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children and Youth, conducts research on language planning, and reports to U.S. federal government agencies on the University's contributions to research and scholarship.

The Office of Sponsored Programs provides services and support to Gallaudet faculty and staff seeking outside funding for projects of benefit to the Gallaudet community.

The University's Institutional Review Board comprises 18 members representing various components of the campus and community who review research involving human subjects to assure the projection of their rights and welfare.

Public Service:

Last year, Gallaudet served tens of thousands of individuals through conferences, leadership institutes, professional studies and extension courses, sign language classes, ASL/English bilingual education, enrichment and youth programs, international programs, and its regional centers (East—Northern Essex Community College, Mass.; Midwest—John A. Logan College, Ill.; South—Austin Community College, Texas; West—Ohlone College, Calif.; and Pacific Initiatives—Gallaudet University Office of National Outreach, Washington, D.C.).

In fulfilling its national service role via training and technical assistance, information dissemination, and exhibits and performances, the Clerc Center served tens of thousands of individuals and disseminated over 100,00 products and publications this year.

Enrollment (as of fall 2017): 

In the fall of academic year 2017-2018, the institution experienced the following enrollments:

Undergraduate (degree/non-degree, full- and part-time) 1,129
Graduate (degree/non-degree, full- and part-time)   449
English Language Institute/Consortium 45
University Subtotal 1,623
Clerc Center
Kendall Demonstration Elementary School 103
Model Secondary School for the Deaf  174
Clerc Center Subtotal 277
TOTAL Fall Academic Year 2017-18 Enrollment 1,900

In addition, on the fall census date, we had 138 students enrolled in Professional Studies activities.

International students comprise five percent of the degree-seeking student body.


Gallaudet University has more than 20,000 alumni around the world. The Gallaudet University Alumni Association, organized in 1889, has 53 chapters.

According to a survey conducted by the University, 96 percent of the undergraduate student respondents who graduated between December 2014 and August 2015 are either employed or furthering their education. Ninety-nine percent of the survey respondents who graduated with graduate degrees during the same time frame are employed or furthering their education.

Seventy-nine percent of Model Secondary School for the Deaf students who graduated in 2016 are in postsecondary education, training programs, or employed within one year after graduation.


The University and the Clerc Center have 934 employees, 499 of whom are deaf or hard of hearing. A total of 240 employees are faculty members or teachers.

Annual University Tuition and Room and Board (Academic Year 2017-2018):

Tuition and room and board are charged as follows. Additional charges are applied for student activities and health-related fees. For a full explanation of the details of all charges, including those below, refer to the Gallaudet University website.

U.S. student tuition $ 16,032 $ 17,640
International student tuition (non-developing countries) $ 32,064 $ 35,280
International student tuition (developing countries) $ 24,048 $ 26,460
Room and Board $ 13,744 $ 13,744

No tuition is charged for students at Kendall Demonstration Elementary School or the Model Secondary School for the Deaf.

Note: These numbers may have been updated since Fast Facts was published. The Finance Office maintains the most up to date fee schedule.


Gallaudet University is accredited by:

Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
3624 Market Street, Second Floor West
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Telephone: (267) 284-5000

The Middle States Commission on Higher Education is a regional institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

Many of the University's programs are also accredited by professional accrediting bodies, including:

  • American Psychological Association (APA)
  • American Speech-Language-Hearing Association's Council on Academic Accreditation (ASHA / CAA)
  • Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP)
  • Council on Accreditation of Counseling and Related Programs (CACREP)
  • Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)

Our Deaf Education program is approved by, and allows graduates to become CED certified through the Council on the Education of the Deaf (CED).

Programs that prepare graduates to be a licensed professional in schools are approved by the District of Columbia State Education Agency (SEA).

These same programs, along with the master's in School Social Work program, are part of Gallaudet's Professional Education Unit which is accredited by the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).

In addition, many programs are reviewed by the following specialized professional associations (SPAs) as part of NCATE's reaccreditation process:

  • Association for Childhood Education International (ACEI)
  • Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)
  • National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)
  • National Association of School Psychologists (NASP)
  • National Council for Social Studies (NCSS)
  • National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE)
  • National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM)
  • National Science Teachers Association (NSTA)

The Kendall Demonstration Elementary School and the Model Secondary School for the Deaf are the demonstration schools of the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center at Gallaudet University. Both schools are fully accredited by two organizations: The Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools (MSA), and the Conference of Educational Administrators of the Schools and Programs for the Deaf (CEASD).


Total revenues and other support for FY 2017 were $183,434,350.


As of the end of FY 2017, the University's endowment was approximately $179.1 million.


Gallaudet welcomes tax-deductible contributions from individuals, businesses, foundations, and organizations in support of University initiatives and priorities, including scholarships, program enhancements and development, and renovation projects. For more information about philanthropic support for Gallaudet, including opportunities to make a gift in memory or in honor of a loved one, please visit the Development Office website at

Community Impact:

Gallaudet is one of the area's largest businesses, with direct salaries, wages, and benefits totaling more than $115.6 million in FY 2017. The University spent another $65.2 million on goods and services, and $12.3 million on capital improvements.

Since 2012, Gallaudet has constructed two new residence halls and renovated 12 buildings. In 2013, the District of Columbia's Zoning Commission approved the Gallaudet University 2022 Campus Plan, the university's vision for campus development for 2012 to 2022.