Skip to main content

Prospective Students


Thank you for your interest in the UH American Sign Language Interpreting program.

Do you want to learn American Sign Language?

Enroll in ASL language courses to fulfill the University's foreign language requirement.  Our Program offers the following courses:  SGNL 1301, 1302, 2301, and then 2302.  These language courses must be taken one at a time.  You should also enroll in COMD 3301 (Deaf Culture) to learn more about American Deaf Culture and the people who use ASL daily to communicate.

What if you've already learned some ASL in high school or from your family?

Then you qualify to take our placement test!  You must take our placement test before enrolling in UH SGNL 1302, 2301 and 2302 courses.  Our language courses are intensive and you will want to make sure you are prepared before enrolling.  Learn more about placement testing process here.  Students that have not signed up for placement testing will be dropped from courses as the first day of class approaches.  You can enroll in SGNL 1301 without taking a placement exam. 

If you already have a university degree, can you still enroll in ASL courses?

If you have earned a BA degree at another university, then you should apply to UH as a Post-Baccalaureate student.  The University will then determine which courses will be needed to complete the SGNL degree.  Learn more here.

Do you want to become a professional interpreter?

Great! You are considered a UH ASLI pre-major.  We recommend taking the language courses HERE at the University of Houston.  Starting in the fall or summer is ideal.  You will need to take the following courses and earn a grade of B- or better:

SGNL 1301, 1302, 2301 (for majors) & 2302 (for majors): Language courses

COMD 3301:  American Deaf Culture

SGNL 2233: History of Interpreting and Translation Profession (only offered in the Fall)

SGNL 2335: Privilege and Equity in ASL Interpreting (only offered in the Spring)

After completing those courses, you will then formally apply to major in ASL Interpreting.  Our faculty will guide you thru the application process while you are enrolled in SGNL 2335.

What if you are already a certified interpreter?  Or what if you want to learn how to teach ASL?

The purpose of this program is to prepare students to gain entry-level certification as a professional interpreter.  Only a limited number of students can be accepted and trained each year.  Students are accepted based on their ability to achieve this goal. 

The University of Houston's program is not designed to prepare you for Advanced or Master level certification nor will it prepare you on how to teach ASL in high school.  It is recommended that you look for a degree that has a specialization to meet your needs.  SGNL courses in the major are NOT waived for students who possess certification.  Attendance class meetings and community service involvement is a requirement for enrolled students and exceptions are not granted for working interpreters. 

Learn more about available programs here.

I'm ready to Major in SGNL.


Applicants must have successfully completed SGNL 2301 Intermediate American Sign Language III (ASL 3) and SGNL 2233 History of Interpreting and Translation Profession prior to applying. Students may be currently enrolled in SGNL 2302 Intermediate American Sign Language IV (ASL 4)  and SGNL 2335 when submitting an application to the program.

Please review the application packet and curriculum information carefully.

Deadline for to apply:   May 

Here's what you'll do:

Step one: Check to make sure you meet the prerequisite requirements listed above.  

Step two: Register to take the BEI Test of English Proficiency.  Click here to learn more about the BEI Test of English Proficiency such as test fees, test sites and to take a sample TEP test.  To register with BEI and apply to take the test, click here.  Applicants should register and schedule testing by April of each year.

Step three:  Contact the SGNL Advisor to prepare for application submission.  

Have you taken courses from another Interpreter Training Program?

The following courses are typically accepted by the University but may require further review:
  • SGNL 1301: Elementary American Sign Language I
  • SGNL 1302: Elementary American Sign Language II
  • SGNL 2301: Intermediate American Sign Language III
  • SGNL 2302: Intermediate American Sign Language IV

Step one: Apply to UH as soon as possible. Starting in the FALL is the best time to take the required SGNL/SGNL courses. 

Step two: If accepted, you must take an SGNL placement test before the semester starts.  You will also need to attend an Advising and Registration for Transfer (ART) students to meet with the SGNL advisor.  Bring printed or electronic copies of the syllabi of ASL/ITP courses you have taken to your ART session.

Step three:  The SGNL advisor will inform you of which classes you will need to take. 

For fall enrollment, students typically take SGNL 2233 and/or SGNL 2301-for premajors only

For spring enrollment, students typically take SGNL 2335 and SGNL 2302-for premajors only

Step four:  Apply to the Program after completing SGNL 2233 and 2335.

Application Requirements

Send the complete application packet along with the $75 application fee via check or money order to:

SGNL Admissions Committee
3871 Holman St. Room M156
University of Houston
Houston, TX 77204