Modules in SASL

The Department of South African Sign Language offers Sign Language as a subject on both undergraduate and postgraduate level.


The course is offered over 3 years, but students can exit after their first, second, or third year. There is no prerequisite for enrolment for SASL on first-year level except for motivation, passion, and eagerness to learn. To enroll as a second-year SASL student, successful completion of the SASL first-year modules is a prerequisite. For enrolment as a third-year SASL student, successful completion of the second-year SASL modules is a prerequisite.

SASL as a subject is divided into four separate modules, all of which are compulsory:

  • Linguistics: this offers the student a basis for understanding the grammatical aspects of signed languages.
  • Deaf culture: the focus of this module is to provide students with information about the Deaf culture, organisations for the Deaf as well as to establish an understanding of the struggle Deaf people have in having their language recognised.
  • SASL Acquisition: During this hour, students are taught vocabulary (signs) related to specific topics, e.g. family, school, food, animals, etc.
  • SASL Practical: students have the opportunity to practise what they have learned in the Acquisition class through interaction with deaf people and signing to peers.

First year

SASL1514 and 1524

Second year

SASL2614 and 2624

Third year

SASL 3718 and 3728


Students can enrol for postgraduate studies with specialisation in SASL.


  • SASP6808 - Advanced phonology, morphology and Syntax
  • SASS6808 - Advanced Semantics and Pragmatics
  • SASC6808 - Advanced studies in Deaf culture
  • SASA6808 - Advanced SASL Acquisition
  • SSLR6808 - Research report


SSLM8900 Dissertation in SASL


SASL9100 Thesis


T: +27 51 401 2240 or

Marizanne Cloete: +27 51 401 2592

Neliswa Emeni-Tientcheu: +27 51 401 2536
Phyllis Masilo: +27 51 401 9683

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