Date of Award

Spring 5-12-2023

Document Type


First Advisor

Deanna Gagne

Second Advisor

Onudeah Nicolarakis

Third Advisor

Ardavan Guity


This capstone project focuses on language research among the deaf community in Rwanda, Africa. This study examines sign language in Rwanda, the language’s context, and considers one’s positionality as the researcher. This is a three-tiered project. The first tier is an analysis of research positionality and how to do ethical research. The second tier applies qualitative research methods to understand sociolinguistics by interviewing Rwandans in the deaf and signing community. The third tier is a linguistic analysis of colors in data previously collected in Rwanda by Dr. Cecily Whitworth. The ultimate goals for this project are to learn about positionality as a researcher, gain a better understanding of the sociolinguistics context of the deaf community in Rwanda, analyze color data to see the potential influences within the data sample provided, and doing all of these things in an ethical way.



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