The American Sign Language Program and Department of Anthropology at the University of Virginia seek to hire an Assistant Professor (tenure track) whose work explores signed languages, deaf cultures, and/or deaf communicative practices.

We welcome applications from anthropologists and scholars with training and synergistic interests in other disciplines, including but not limited to deaf studies, social studies of technology, and linguistics. The appointment will be evenly split between the two units by teaching and service, with Anthropology providing the tenure home for the successful candidate.

Geographic area and topical specialization are open, with a strong preference for candidates whose research and teaching complement those of the Anthropology Department and ASL Program faculty. Given the interdisciplinarity of this hire, we also prefer candidates who can work productively with colleagues within and across the two units and additional ones, potentially including (but not limited to) the interdepartmental Linguistics M.A. program and undergraduate major. The successful candidate will be someone with organizational and interpersonal skills to contribute to research and curricular initiatives.

UVA’s Anthropology Department includes faculty from three of anthropology’s traditional subfields: archaeological, sociocultural, and linguistic anthropology. Faculty are firmly committed to field-based methods and are excited by the possibilities inherent in community-based research and writing for diverse audiences. Faculty research specialties that overlap productively with sign language research and deaf studies are gesture and multimodal interaction; anthropology of health, ethics, and care; cultural identities and inequality; and documentation and analysis of underrepresented languages.

The UVA American Sign Language Program is dedicated to increasing knowledge about deaf people’s culture and experiences by offering courses in American deaf history, deafness in literature and film, sign language linguistics, and related topics. The program offers a four-semester sequence of ASL courses that fulfills UVA’s World Language requirement. It also offers a minor in ASL and Deaf Culture with advanced language and elective courses.

The University of Virginia is committed to providing sign language interpreters as necessary for all classes, meetings, and other University functions. Deaf people, women, minorities, veterans, and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.


Applicants must hold a Ph.D. at the time of appointment. The successful candidate will have extensive firsthand experience with D/deaf communities.

We seek candidates with an ongoing program of research and publication (commensurate with years since Ph.D.) and prior teaching experience.

Half of the hire’s 2/2 teaching load will be dedicated to language instruction in the ASL program, with the level of instruction determined by the candidate’s strengths and interests. 

The remaining classes will be in the hire’s area of specialization, contributing to the Anthropology Ph.D. program and undergraduate major.

In addition to teaching, the candidate will be expected to maintain an active research program, mentor undergraduate and graduate students, and contribute to the Anthropology Department, the ASL Program, and the wider University through service.

Application Instructions

Visit to apply.

Complete an application online with the following documents:

Review of applications will begin on November 30, 2023. Priority will be given to applications received by this date in selecting candidates for preliminary interviews. However, the position will remain open until filled.

For additional information about the position, please get in touch with Professor Lise Dobrin at

If you have any questions about the application process, please don't hesitate to contact Melanie Sponaugle, Academic Recruiter, at 

UVa is in Charlottesville, a small city in central Virginia, located 1 hour from Richmond and 2.5 hours from Washington D.C., home of Gallaudet UniversityThe Virginia School for the Deaf and the Blind is 30 minutes away. Charlottesville boasts many cultural attractions for its size, offering restaurants, an active arts scene, and excellent schools. It provides easy access to outdoor recreation in the Blue Ridge Mountains and Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

For more information about UVA and the Charlottesville community, please see and

For more information on the benefits available to faculty at UVA, visit and

The University will perform background checks on all new hires prior to employment.

The University of Virginia, including the UVA Health System which represents the UVA Medical Center, Schools of Medicine and Nursing, UVA Physicians Group and the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library, are fundamentally committed to the diversity of our faculty and staff. We believe diversity is excellence expressing itself through every person's perspectives and lived experiences. We are equal opportunity and affirmative action employers. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, color, disability, gender identity or expression, marital status, national or ethnic origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, veteran or military status, and family medical or genetic information. 

The University of Virginia offers confidential Dual Career Services to partners of incoming faculty candidates. To learn more, please visit  

Published: 11/06/2023