In English

Research of the Finnish Sign Language in the University of Jyväskylä

For an overview of our research interests and publications, please see the Tutkimus - Research section. Some information in English is also available here.




General information

Why to study Finnish Sign Language in the University of Jyväskylä?

The aim of the study programme is to provide students with a comprehensive knowledge of Finnish Sign Language and with such theoretical and practical skills that the students after graduation are competent to

  • teach Finnish Sign Language as a mother tongue or as a foreign language
  • work in assignments that require expertise in sign language and sign language culture, literature and communication
  • involve in sign language research and follow the progress in the field

What do the studies of Finnish Sign Language consist of?

In the studies of Finnish Sign Language, one of two options can be chosen: K1 (the programme of SL as a mother tongue) and K2 (the programme of SL as a foreign language). The programme of K1 can be taken by those whose mother tongue is (Finnish) Sign Language or whose language proficiency is estimated to be adequate. K2 is designed for those studying Finnish Sign Language as a foreign language. Both programmes of Finnish Sign Language can be studied at three levels: basic studies, subject studies and advanced studies.

A student of Finnish Sign Language will become familiar with the basics of linguistics, with the structure of signed languages and particularly with the structure of Finnish Sign Language and learn about the sign language community and its culture, history and literature. Furthermore, the students of K1 will deal with sign language communication in greater detail, and the students of K2 will focus on acquiring language proficiency.

The Candidate’s degree in Humanities (BA) can be completed in an average of 3 years. BA studies (180 pts) include 80 pts in the major subject and 85 pts in minor subject/subjects. Candidate’s degree can only include basic and subject studies. In addition, some general courses of language and communication are required.

Master’s degree (MA) can be completed within approx. 2 years. MA studies (120 pts) include advanced studies in major subject (80 pts) and studies in minor subject/subjects, complementary studies in major subject or elective studies (40 pts).

How is Finnish Sign Language studied?

In the studies of Finnish Sign Language, the student’s active participation and involvement are emphasised. In addition to lectures and examinations, small group activities, projects, essay writing, learning journal reflection and web-based studying are used as learning media.

What to study in addition to Finnish Sign Language?

Minor subjects can be selected from a variety of possibilities. Languages, philosophy or educational science, for example, are suitable for minor subjects. To qualify as a subject teacher, pedagogical studies must be completed.

How can the studies of Finnish Sign Language contribute to one’s working life?

Those having studied Finnish Sign Language as their major subject work in assignments and jobs requiring expertise in sign language (e.g. as researchers and experts on sign language culture, literature or communication). The education of sign language subject teachers provides qualifications to work as a subject teacher of sign language in primary school, secondary and upper secondary school, vocational schools as well as in institutions of higher vocational level and adult education. The studies of Finnish Sign Language also build a firm basis for students to work as experts on learning materials and as researchers in teaching and learning.


Department of Language and Communication Studies
Finnish Sign Language
P.O. Box 35(F)
FI- 40014 University of Jyväskylä