Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


Barton’s major in deaf and hard-of-hearing education is unusual—there are only about 35 undergraduate programs like it in the nation, and ours is the only one east of I-95 between New Jersey and Florida. At the heart of our program is a comprehensive philosophy. This means that all of your coursework and engaged-learning opportunities emphasize the idea that deaf and hard-of-hearing children can be educated in many ways. It also means that our program prepares you to work in many different educational settings and grade levels, all the way from birth through 12th grade.

Be sure to check  out the FAQs for answers to common questions about the program.

Special Features

While the Eastern North Carolina School for the Deaf is only about two miles from the College and serves as a resource for our program, we also prepare you to work in public school settings.

Many of our students acquire a second area of licensure in elementary education, middle grades education, or special education. In most cases, you can accomplish the coursework for both the major and an additional licensure area in four years.

Course Information

Along with courses in deaf education, you’ll take general education courses—such as curriculum, classroom assessment, and classroom management—and methods courses that apply to all children.

Courses specific to the major are:

  • American Sign Language I
  • American Sign Language II
  • American Sign Language III
  • Educational and Psychological Foundations of Deafness
  • Introduction to Speech and Hearing Science
  • Methods of Teaching School Subjects to the Deaf
  • Language Development and Linguistics
  • Teaching Reading to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
  • Teaching Language to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
  • Teaching Oral/Aural Communication Skills to the Deaf
  • Student Teaching—Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Scholarships and Financial Aid

We award several scholarships to rising seniors. These include the Wilson Evening Lions Club Scholarship, the Sertoma Club Scholarship, and the Travelers Protective Association Scholarship. We also offer a number of other endowed scholarships to rising seniors each spring.

The Gamma Mu chapter of Kappa Delta Pi awards a scholarship to the graduate deemed the outstanding student teacher.


As part of the major, you’ll complete a series of practicum placements that culminate in student teaching for one full semester. These placements usually begin in your sophomore year with a 15-hour practicum in a classroom with deaf and hard-of-hearing children at the Eastern North Carolina School for the Deaf. You’ll also spend 24 hours observing and assisting in a classroom with children with special needs other than deafness. In your junior year, you’ll spend 15 hours in a regular elementary reading classroom and 15 hours in a reading classroom for deaf and hard-of-hearing children. And at the beginning of your senior year, you’ll be given your student teaching placement, where you’ll start by spending one full day a week in the classroom. In your final semester, you’ll be student-teaching there full time.

Student teaching takes place in Wilson County and in surrounding counties as well as the Eastern North Carolina School for the Deaf in Wilson.

Career Opportunities

When you graduate, you’re qualified to teach the deaf and hard of hearing. The major can also serve as an excellent springboard for graduate studies in a number of fields, such as speech pathology, audiology, reading education, counseling, and sign language interpretation.

Clubs and Organizations

The Educators of the Deaf Club supports children at the Eastern North Carolina School for the Deaf through fund-raising for special projects at the school, chaperoning dances, providing holiday parties, and after-school tutoring.

Barton’s sign language choir interprets songs—both secular and religious—in a number of performances throughout the year at schools, churches, and on campus.