What is DCAL?

DCAL is the acronym for the Deafness Cognition and Language Research Centre, based at University College London. It is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). DCAL brings together leading Deaf and hearing researchers in the fields of sign linguistics, psychology, and neuroscience.

DCAL started its research in 2006 and now is in its sixth year of activity. It is the largest research centre in this field in Europe with nearly 40 staff and research students, about one third of whom are Deaf.

The vast majority of research studies on language and thought are based on languages which are spoken and heard. DCAL's research provides a unique perspective on language and thought based on Deaf people's communication. DCAL places sign languages and Deaf people in the centre of the general understanding of how language and communication work within linguistics, psychology, child development, and neuroscience of language.