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Charles Herbold

An American Sign Language expert with a passion for sharing Deaf culture and experiences.

Charles Herbold’s time as an ASL specialist cultivated his ability to accommodate diverse learning styles in the classroom, so every student can engage with the language and culture of the Deaf community. His courses include Educational and Life Experiences of Deaf People, The Deaf Narrative, and American Deaf Culture. “Most, if not all, students enjoy the immersive experience of learning ASL and its beauty, and it is quite rewarding to watch them blossom,” he says.
What inspires you to teach ASL?

I am passionate about teaching ASL because, as a Deaf person, I understand the importance of effective communication and equal access for all. ASL is a vibrant and expressive language that allows Deaf individuals to fully engage with the world around them. Through teaching I can empower others to bridge the Deaf and hearing communities, break down barriers, and foster inclusivity. This not only benefits the Deaf community but enriches the lives of those who learn ASL and gain new perspectives. ASL is not just a language; it is a rich and expressive form of communication that reflects the values, history, and experiences of the Deaf community.

What aspects of ASL do you find most interesting?
One of my favorite subjects is linguistics, since ASL grammar, syntax, and structure differ from English. It is fascinating to study how ASL uses handshapes, facial expressions, and body movements to convey meaning. I also enjoy analyzing and appreciating the unique features of ASL literature, such as classifiers, role-shifting, and visual storytelling. Like spoken languages, ASL has rich literary traditions — its poetry holds a special place in my heart. Through storytelling, poetry, and performances, ASL literature captures the essence of Deaf culture and experiences.
What do you hope students take away from your courses on Deaf culture, experiences, and literature?

I aim to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of ASL and culture in the Deaf community. I want them to be immersed in the richness and complexity of ASL and recognize it as a legitimate and valuable means of communication. My hope is that students gain increased empathy toward individuals who are Deaf or hard of hearing by learning ASL and interacting with them.

About Prof. Herbold

Lecturer in American Sign Language
Subject: American Sign Language Studies
Department: American Sign Language

Outside of the Classroom


He likes to surf, so he looks for great waves when traveling. He loved Nicaragua, and his next trip will be to the Mentawai Islands, Indonesia.


A big reader, the best book he read lately is “A Tale of Two Cities” by Charles Dickens.


His go-to pizza topping combo is pepperoni and pineapple.