Deaf Studies: Speech to Text Support Services

Degree offered

Associate in Arts in Deaf Studies

Credits required 64


Joanne Preston

Program contact 

Sandra Lygren, Coordinator and Professor of Deaf Studies, ext. 2748

Program Goals Statement

Deaf Studies explores the language, culture, history and contemporary issues of Deaf people. Fundamental to our program are both competency in American Sign Language and a desire to work with the Deaf community as allies (or advocate members).  As such, all Deaf Studies concentrations share the same ASL and Deaf Studies core courses. This career concentration also provides specialized workforce skills. C-Print Pro™ is a computerized Speech to Text system invented at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf. Students in this option are preparing themselves to primarily work with Deaf/HH persons in educational settings. Students in this option are prepared to work upon graduation as an entry-level freelance C-Print™ captionists or to transfer to the BA/BS program of their choice. Students who complete all requirements will also graduate with a certificate of completion from the National Technical Institute of the Deaf for C-Print Pro™.

Student Learning Outcomes

See Learning Outcomes

Program Information


  • BCC offers several Deaf Studies concentrations to meet your career and academic goals. The concentration options are: Transfer, Interpreter Transfer, Education, Human Services and Speech to Text Support Services. Students unsure of which option to choose should choose Deaf Studies: Transfer.
  • This is not real time captioning (CART) as seen on TV although C-Print Pro™  but can be and is used to create open captions for the internet and real time meaning for meaning access.
  • Students who have taken non-credit “sign language classes” in the past, or, are heritage signers (Deaf/signing family) should meet with the program director to discuss Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) opportunities.
  • Students who have taken 2 or more ASL classes in high school, with a B or better, should meet with the program director for placement.
  • Although individual courses may be offered on different campuses in both day/evening formats, Deaf Studies courses are primarily offered on the Fall River campus as day enrollments. Some Deaf Studies courses may be offered completely on-line.

Standards & Expectations

  • Students not earning a C or better in any ASL class, DST 101 or DST 110 Deaf Culture will not be able to complete an AA Deaf Studies program and should speak to the program director about options including retaking courses in the Prep Certificate.
  • Students spend an additional hour per week engaged in language lab activities with every ASL class taken. Students are expected to attend various Deaf events and get involved with their program throughout their studies to apply their language skills and develop them further in real world, practical situations.
  • A CORI may be required for service learning, practicum or ASL 285 placements.
  • In classroom settings, captionists may serve with other “auxiliary aides” such as interpreters. Understanding the role of interpreters, including their professional code of conduct, will be a benefit. As such, students may choose to take DSC 225 Introduction to the ASL/English Interpreting Profession as an extra elective.
  • In order to meet program outcomes, students need to be able to:
    • touch type and demonstrate keyboarding speed of at least 40 wpm in a three minute timing before starting Speech to Text courses
    • use word processing software and their own lap top.

Additional Costs

  • Students are responsible for associated costs such as C-Print Pro software (available only through bookstore), a laptop if not already owned, peripheral equipment desired for use with laptop, professional attire for practicum, and transportation to and from practicum.

  • As stated above, Deaf Studies majors are required to attend Deaf events every semester. Most are not on campus and some options will have a registration fee or ticket price; students are responsible for their own transportation.

  • Deaf Studies majors may incur copying costs (after the BCC free allotment given per semester) associated with their Intro. to Deaf Studies course when creating their resource portfolio.

Career Pathways and Essential Functions

The Deaf Studies welcomes all interested students to our courses and programs but strives to be completely transparent with incoming students about the career pathways and essential functions required (or expected) at transfer institutions or in the workforce. The Speech to Text Support Service option prepares students for entry level work primarily in educational settings. As such, essential functions in those settings include certain cognitive, physical and sensory abilities which are necessary to perform the daily duties of a professional C-Print captionist.

These are:

cognitive abilities - ability to process spoken language and deconstruct it phonetically; ability to process images from a blackboard, whiteboard, LCD projection and laptop screen; ability to deconstruct auditory information in working memory while still actively listening to and comprehending a spoken message.

physical abilities - ability to touch type at an eventual speed of 60+ wpm; ability to transport self and equipment needed for captioning; ability to sit for extended periods.

sensory abilities - ability to access (fully) visual information on a blackboard, white board and LCD screen projection, as well as, a laptop screen; ability to access (fully) and comprehend spoken language.

If you are unsure about meeting these essential functions of employment, with or without accommodations, please contact the program director for a consult.

After BCC

  • Students can work as entry level captionists, captionist/aides in a K-12 Deaf ed setting, or can transfer to the BA/BS program of their choice.
  • Students who continue to develop advanced proficiency with both keyboarding and C-Print Pro™ will be employable for remote captioning, internet captioning and transcription creation.
  • Students who plan to transfer into interpreter training on a part-time basis may find it quite beneficial to work as captionists utilizing and maintaining their signing ability and Deaf cultural norms.

Infused General Education Competencies


First-Year Experience, Oral Communication


Degree Requirements

General Courses

COM 113Interpersonal Speech

3 credits

ENG 101Composition I: College Writing

3 credits

ENG 102Composition II: Writing about Literature

3 credits

HST 111The West and the World I

3 credits

PHL 152Ethics: Making Ethical Decisions in a Modern World

3 credits

Total Credit Hours:15

Program Courses

ASL 101Elementary American Sign Language I

3 credits

ASL 102Elementary American Sign Language II

3 credits

ASL 181Visual/Gestural Communication

2 credits

ASL 201Intermediate American Sign Language I

3 credits

ASL 202Intermediate American Sign Language II

3 credits

ASL 284ASL/Deaf Studies Capstone Seminar

1 credit

ASL 285Community-based Learning in Deaf Studies

1 credit

DSC 221Introduction to Speech to Text Support Services in the Deaf Community

3 credits

DSC 235Speech to Text for Deaf Community

3 credits

DSC 236Speech to Text for the Deaf Community Practicum I

1 credit

DSC 281Speech to Text for the Deaf Community Practicum II

1 credit

DST 101Introduction to Deaf Studies

3 credits

DST 110Deaf Culture

3 credits

DST 151Deaf History

3 credits

DST 251Deaf Literature and ASL Folklore

3 credits

DST 210The Deaf Community in Society

3 credits

Total Credit Hours:39

Choose one of the following Elective Courses

Behavioral/Social Science Elective: PSY 101 or SOC 101

3 credits

Total Credit Hours:3


Elective Courses

Mathematics Elective

3 credits

Scientific Reasoning and Discovery Elective - Lab

4 credits

Total Credit Hours:0-7
See General Education Competency Courses for course listings.

Recommended Course Sequence - Fall Semester 1

ASL 101, DST 101, DST 110, ENG 101, PSY 101/SOC 101

Recommended Course Sequence - Spring Semester 2

ASL 102, ASL 181, COM 113, DSC 221, DST 151/DST 251PHL 152

Recommended Course Sequence - Summer

Students are encouraged to take a Gen Ed course (HST 111, ENG 102, Lab Science Elective, Math Elective) in the summer between semesters 2 and 3 to lighten the work load.


Recommended Course Sequence - Fall Semester 3

ASL 201, DSC 235, DSC 236, DST 210, ENG 102, Mathematics Elective

Recommended Course Sequence - Spring Semester 4

ASL 202, ASL 284, ASL 285, DSC 281, DST 151/DST 251, HST 111, Science Elective
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