Northampton students are supplementing their courses by studying British Sign Language (BSL) to help them develop their communication skills with members of the deaf community.
The evening lessons, held each Wednesday at Park Campus, are delivered by teacher Sue Grantham and Kate Webster from the Northampton charity, Deaf Connect.
The lessons run throughout the year and students who pass receive a Level 1 qualification in BSL, by accredited body, Signature.
As part of this project students are also required to complete 40 hours community volunteering with the local deaf community.
Sue Grantham (left with thumbs up) from Deaf Connect starts the sign language course.
This project is linked to the University’s Changemaker initiative, which focuses on finding solutions to environmental of social problems to improve people’s lives.
The students were required to formally apply and undergo an interview process before undertaking the training.
The current students are enrolled on the following courses at Northampton; Special Educational Needs & Inclusion, Primary Education, Psychology and Counselling, Occupational Therapy and Child Nursing.
Sara Simons, Senior Lecturer in Occupational Therapy and initiator, said: “It’s vitally important that our students learn to communicate inclusively with the service users they support .This is the fourth year of running the programme. Our latest group are making great progress, even after just three weeks.
“The sign-language lessons are just one of the initiatives we provide here at the University of Northampton in enhancing students’ employability and preparation for their future careers.
“We look forward to the students communicating confidently with all members of the community and we are grateful to Joanna Steer the CEO of Deaf Connect and her team for their continued support.”
Find out more information about Deaf Connect on their website.
See the courses section of our website for more about the degrees listed above.