American Sign Language

If you're not sure where to start your research this guide will point you to some of the best starting points. Don't forget, you can always get in touch directly with any questions you may have. For ASL course listings and descriptions see the undergraduate calendar.

The following is just a small selection of the books we have on American Sign Language, sign languages in general, and deaf culture.

If a print book you are interested in is already checked out, use the "Hold/Request" link to make sure you get the book next. 


Tennant, R. A. & Gluszak Brown, M. (2010). The American Sign Language handshape dictionary
Call Number: HV2465.T46 2010, see availability

Valli, C. (2005) The Gallaudet dictionary of American Sign Language. 
Call Number: HV2475.G35 2005, see availability

Bailey, C. S. & Dolby, K. (2002). The Canadian dictionary of ASL 
Call Number:   HV2475.C36 2002 , see availability


Brentari, D. (2010). Sign Languages
Call Number:  P117.S528 2010 , see availability

Marschark, M. & Spencer, P. E. (2003). The Oxford handbook of deaf studies, language, and education
Newer edition in print, Call Number: HV2380.O88 2011, see availability

Mathur, G. & Napoli, D. J. (2011). Deaf around the world: the impact of language. 
Call Number: HV2474.D43 2011, see availability

Orfanidou, E, Woll, B, & Morgan, G. (2015). Research methods in sign language studies: a practical guide

Pfau, R. , Steinbach, M. , & Woll, B. (2012). Sign language: an international handbook.
Call Number: HV2474.S539 2012, see availability

Sage deaf studies encyclopedia

Tabak, J. (2006). Significant gestures: a history of American Sign Language.
Call Number: HV2474.T3 2006, see availability


Liddell, S. K. (2003). Grammar, gesture, and meaning in American Sign Language.
also in print, Call Number: HV2474.L53 2003, see availability

Neidle, C. et al. (2000). The syntax of American Sign Language.
Call Number: HV2474.S994, see availability

Valli, C. et al (2011). Linguistics of American Sign Language: an introduction. 
Call Number HV2474.V35 2011, see availability (older edition also available)

Sociolinguistics, Discourse, Pragmatics

Hoza, J. (2007). It's not what you sign, it's how you sign it: Politeness in American Sign Language.
Call Number: HV2474.H69 2007, see availability

Lucas, C. (2001). The sociolinguistics of sign languages.
Also in print, Call Number: HV2474.S62 2001, see availability

Lucas, C. (2001). Sociolinguistic variation in American sign language. 
Call Number: HV2474.L832 2001, see availability

Roy, C. B. (2011). Discourse in signed languages.
Call Number: HV2474.D58 2011, see availability



If you're looking for journal articles for an essay related to deaf culture, sign languages etc. try searching these databases:

The Library has several journals that focus on deaf studies. Here are a few selected titles:


Our Collection:

  • To search for relevant videos in our collection: Do a Keyword search in Summon. Once you get your results, limit the "Content Type" to either "Streaming video" or "video recording" . (NOTE: you will probably have to click on the "More" under Content Type to see the video options)
    use Content Type filter on left of screen to limit to just streaming video or video recording

Streaming video:



‚ÄčOther videos



  • Marlee Signs: free iOS app, lessons with Marlee Matlin, Academy Award winning deaf-actress
  • TunesU: has a number of sign language related video courses 



Content last updated: August 29, 2017