About the Press

Mission Statement

Gallaudet University Press is a nonprofit scholarly publisher that shares knowledge by and about deaf people and signing communities with the world. We are the only academic press with a mission to publish content that advances awareness and recognition of deaf people, deaf communities, and signed languages. Our publishing program supports Gallaudet University’s role as a beacon to impact and elevate deaf, deafblind, deaf disabled, and hard of hearing people, and it reflects the rich cultures and diverse perspectives of these communities. 

Who We Are

The Gallaudet University Board of Trustees formally chartered the founding of Gallaudet University Press in 1980. Since then, GU Press has published groundbreaking books in the fields of deaf studies, deaf history, deaf education, signed language linguistics, American Sign Language reference, translation and interpreting studies, and more. In addition to scholarly publications, the Press is home to creative works by deaf and Coda authors, such as memoirs and poetry. GU Press also publishes two journals: American Annals of the Deaf, with a focus on deaf education, and Sign Language Studies, which presents research on signed languages and signing communities.


Gallaudet University Press upholds the highest standards of editorial excellence. Submitted manuscripts undergo a rigorous peer-review process to ensure the publication of high-quality content. Publishing decisions are made by an editorial board comprised of members of the Gallaudet academic community. By working in partnership with these stakeholders, we endeavor to produce scholarly and creative works that are relevant and impactful to their fields as well as to their readers. Our audience includes scholars, students, researchers, professionals, advocates, and the interested public.


Why Our Work Matters

Scholarship related to signed languages and the deaf community is relatively new as compared to other fields, but it is growing rapidly with increased recognition of the validity and vibrancy of signed languages and related areas of study. This scholarship not only advances their respective fields, but also contributes to improving the lives of deaf people around the world. Linguistic research leads to recognition of marginalized signed languages and signing communities. Sign language acquisition research leads to better early intervention and educational strategies for deaf children. Sign language interpretation research results in enhanced communication access for deaf people. Research on deaf history and deaf culture has an impact on the positive identity development of deaf people. The importance of representation of deaf authors, whether as scholars or creatives writing works of poetry, memoir, or fiction, cannot be overstated. 

Two books are sitting on a library shelf.

Another critical component of this work is the impact on audience members who are newly discovering deaf culture and sign language, and the continued need to spread awareness as a means to dismantle audism and ableism in society. Gallaudet University Press works in service to these goals and strives to communicate the value of human diversity both within the academy and beyond to broader audiences.

Our Commitment to Accessibility, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Gallaudet University Press recognizes that the principles of accessibility, diversity, equity, and inclusion are the foundation of a successful publishing program. We also recognize that inherent biases exist in scholarly publishing and that we must take specific steps to incorporate these principles both in our role as publishers and as allies of deaf communities and deaf people. These steps include:

• Prioritizing diversity in peer review

• Providing an editorial internship program that offers deaf graduate and undergraduate students at Gallaudet hands-on training, a living wage, and course credit

• Offering accessible digital content, including signed language video and alt-text

• Supporting the signing ecosystem by working with deaf freelancers 

• Ensuring diverse representation in contributed scholarly volumes

• Cultivating a work environment that values the identities and perspectives of all GU Press staff members.

These guidelines will continue to grow and evolve as we expand our understanding of best practices in making accessibility and DEI principles a reality. 

Gallaudet University Press has adopted the Joint Statement of Principles of C4DISC (The Coalition for Diversity and Inclusion in Scholarly Communications).

Learn more about C4DISC here.


On the left in grey text in all caps reads "Association of University Presses." On the right is an abstract design that resembles a kite shape, with long inverted triangles that are orange and turn red at their ends. They radiate from the center of the design outward.

We are a member of the Association of University Presses and share their core values of diversity and inclusion, integrity, intellectual freedom, and stewardship. 

Find out more about these core values here

View the AU Presses mission statement, signed in ASL by Felicia Williams.


With respect and recognition, we work on the traditional grounds belonging to the Nacotchtans, also known as the Anacostan and Piscataway.