Eyasu H. Tamene


I did my BA and MA in General Linguistics at Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. While doing my MA, I got a chance to join an Ethiopian Sign Language (EthSL) dictionary project at ENAD in 2005. From then on, I become more enthusiastic to learn and explore Ethiopian Sign Language and its Deaf community. Working as a lexicographer and a linguist on the project together with a number of Deaf people helped me become a signer in a short period of time. During my two and half years on the project helped me understand basic challenges in the education system of Deaf people in Ethiopia. 

After completing the project in 2007, I joined team of experts as a lecturer and program coordinator designing a project to launch a sign language program in Addis Ababa University. In 2008, we launched Ethiopia’s first BA program in Ethiopian Sign Language and Deaf Culture and a good number of Deaf people started to enroll. The BA program consists of courses in sign language, sign language linguistics, Deaf culture, interpretation, special needs education, Deaf psychology, etc.  I teach courses in sign language linguistics, sign language society, survey of Ethiopian languages and EthSL, language and Identity. 

My interest areas include sociolinguistics and descriptive linguistics. As of September 2012, I am an affiliate UCL/DCAL research student. I am currently pursuing my PhD research entitled The Sociolingistics Study of EthSL under the supervision of Prof. Bencie Woll. This focuses on language use and attitudes towards EthSL. My field work in Ethiopia begins in April 2013.  

Email: Eyasu Tamene