Skip to content
Research AND Innovation

Globally Advancing Deaf and Bilingual Research and Education

Gallaudet University’s ongoing commitment to research

benefitting deaf and hard of hearing people and humanity as a whole has led to a higher research reclassification by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Learning in 2019.

We encourage, promote, and facilitate scholarly research– nationally and internationally. This makes us unique in our mission and enhances the intellectual climate on campus.

Best of all, you get to actively participate in our research work and make a difference in our signing community.

Creating a sense of
belonging for all

Gallaudet was founded on the idea of diversity, inclusion, and opportunity, and that is reflected in our research priorities. We’re committed to creating a sense of belonging for all members of our signing community through our bilingual mission and innovation for impact. Read more about The Gallaudet Commitment.

Opening doors for future generations of researchers

You are our future.

Our seasoned faculty researchers are here to mentor and collaborate with you on research studies, meaning both you and the university benefits from your research work.. We believe that gaining the insight of younger deaf and hard of hearing people is essential to support Gallaudet’s mission.

From serving as student assistants for faculty investigators to carrying out their own studies, students are major contributors to the vitality of campus research.

Research Centers

Our Research Priorities

It is the responsibility and commitment of Gallaudet University to encourage research that addresses the diversity of the deaf and hard of hearing population on campus, across the United States, and around the world. Our research priorities are the foundation for the research efforts of the University and the Clerc Center.

Priority #1 | Education

The status and impact of current practices and policies related to the education, professional and technical training, and career preparation of deaf people through the lifespan, from birth through postgraduate education and beyond, aimed at the development of evidence-based best practices and policies.

Priority #2 | Diversity

Diversity within and between deaf communities, including underserved populations, as represented through the arts, humanities, and allied fields, demographic studies, and genetics, along with ethical and policy issues surrounding these manifestations of diversity.

Priority #3 | Accessibility

Accessibility for d/Deaf, hard of hearing, and deafblind people in the workplace and in society at large, as made possible by a wide range of technologies in several domains, including, but not limited to, telecommunications, captioning, robotics, avatars, speech/sign recognition, and ergonomics.

Priority #4 | Deaf Experience

The subjective experience of living as a deaf individual, as understood through a variety of methodologies used in the fields of biology, psychology, economics, sociology, anthropology, linguistics, political science, and history and philosophy, among others.

Priority #5 | Language and Cognition

The relationship between linguistic and cognitive phenomena and the underlying physical substrate of the brain in deaf individuals, as studied through the processing of visual, tactile, and auditory stimuli in multiple contexts, including language development and learning throughout the lifespan.

Our core research areas were carefully selected over 3 years

Choosing what to focus on as a university isn’t easy. Every aspect of our lives are impacted in some way or another by a research area. Gallaudet University spent 3 years carefully evaluating and selecting the areas of research that they felt would be the most beneficial and worthy of the institution’s time, resources, and investment.

Our research is driven by the imperatives of our promise

We’re committed to creating a sense of belonging for all members of our community through our bilingual mission and innovation for impact . Priority Two is our plan to “address the most critical issues and needs to ensure Gallaudet continues to build a campus climate in which every member of the university community supports each other in feeling welcomed, included, and valued for their unique qualities and individual contributions.”

Our research in the field of education is driven by the challenge of developing and implementing best practices and policies related to education, technical training, and career preparation within the deaf and hard of hearing community.

We earnestly work toward expanding research in the following categories:

  • Bilingual
  • K-12
  • Educator tools
  • Youth outreach
  • Youth programs
  • Visual learning

Diversity is what Gallaudet was founded on. Our research in the field of diversity focuses on ethical and policy issues within and between Deaf, hard of hearing, and Deafblind communities, including underserved populations, as represented through the arts, humanities, and allied fields, demographic studies, and genetics.

Technology makes it possible for Deaf, hard of hearing, and DeafBlind people to live in society with less encumberment. Our research explores how telecommunications, captioning, robotics, avatars, speech/sign recognition, and ergonomics can all be used to positively impact the deaf experience and increase diversity in the workplace and beyond by making it possible fore the deaf community to more easily integrate.

  • Bernstein institute
  • GIEI
  • Deaf space

Every deaf person’s experience is different. Gallaudet’s Deaf Experience research dives deep into how an individual’s experience might influence how they interact with the world. Our research utilizes methodologies from fields like biology, sociology, anthropology, linguistics, political science, and more.

  • ASL Research
  • ASL History
  • ASL Connect
  • Books: Deaf History

Language and cognition are deeply rooted in one’s ability to hear. But for Deaf, hard of hearing, and DeafBlind individuals their brain development and language and cognition is developed by creating alternative paths. This study is conducted through the processing of visual, tactile, and auditory stimuli in multiple contexts, including language development and learning throughout the lifespan.

  • Action and brain lab
  • BLS2
  • EL2
  • TL2
  • VL2
  • ML2
  • Deaf health equity center
  • Molecular genetics lab
  • Petitto brain and language laboratory for neuroimaging
  • Knowledge studios
  • Technology Access Program

Gallaudet University is a Doctoral University: High Research Activity (R2)” equipping leaders in global advances in research and education

We lead in global advances in research and education. Our “higher” R2 research activity is dedicated to better understanding the world and influencing policies and agendas that impact the deaf and hard of hearing community.

Gallaudet Institute of Entrepreneurship & Innovation: Deaf Entrepreneurship

Innovation happens here. The GIEI – Gallaudet Institute of Entrepreneurship & Innovation – identifies systemic barriers for deaf researchers and entrepreneurs and sets out to dismantle them . GIEI also maintains a database of deaf business owners to foster a sense of community and continue to nourish the Signing Ecosystem.

Gallaudet Institute of Entrepreneurship & Innovation: Forging new career paths for changemakers

We build opportunities and encourage the entrepreneurial spirit in deaf youths and adults. Our work with students encourages and drives them to be innovators and entrepreneurs in their chosen fields, forging new career paths along the way.

Deaf Entrepreneurship

Gallaudet Institute of Entrepreneurship & Innovation: Forging new career paths for changemakers. Innovation happens here. We foster an entrepreneurial mindset on campus and participate in a supportive environment that pushes students like you to think creatively. 

Here we provide you a platform that is safe for smart experimentation as well as access to entrepreneur resources, workshops, competitions, internships, mentoring and networking opportunities throughout the academic year.

Student Startup Career & Internship Fair at George Washington University

DMV Top 150 Student Pitch Competition at George Mason University

On campus and Online Courses in Entrepreneurship

Participate in the Y-Summit, a two-day conference to meet successful deaf entrepreneurs and learn their stories on campus and virtually.

“In-Class Roadshows,” with entrepreneurial thinking and leadership conversations

Ongoing mentoring
services provided

The Signing Ecosystem

Admissions Requirements

Hearing Undergraduate