New course at the University of Palermo for expert pedagogists in sign language.

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“With the start of the new academic offer, from the next academic year 2024-2025, the University of Palermo will offer the first master’s degree course, at national level, in Pedagogical Sciences for inclusive communication mediated by the Italian Sign Language (LIS). Three university campuses will be involved: one in the South, one in the Center, and one in the North of Italy. Alongside the University of Palermo, chosen as the administrative headquarters, there will be Roma Tre University and Ca’ Foscari University of Venice.

“We are happy – explains Rector Massimo Midiri – to be pioneers, together with Rome and Venice, in this new master’s course. This represents a further commitment of our University in promoting and disseminating actions and projects aimed at increasing inclusivity. I strongly wanted Unipa to offer support services for teaching, tutoring, counseling, and guidance for the most fragile students. Now we take a further step forward in the field of professional training, aware of being responsible for educating highly qualified figures who can be put in the service of society.”

The master’s degree program will aim to train pedagogists, experts in inclusive communication processes. A central figure in institutions and educational services where there are deaf students or hearing students who, due to other difficulties and disabilities such as Down syndrome or autism, use Italian Sign Language as the main tool for communication. There will be a total of 114 places available for the three university campuses. Therefore, the University of Palermo has launched an expression of interest that will end on May 31.

“Currently, the training path for people with difficulties in verbal communication – emphasizes Professor Elena Mignosi of the Department of Psychological, Pedagogical, Physical Exercise, and Training Sciences at the University of Palermo – is very lacking, so much so that Italy is at the bottom of Europe in terms of deaf graduates. Also, the Communication Assistant, provided for by Law 104 of 1992, starting from kindergarten, does not have a clear role or a uniform qualification because there is still no national legislation. In addition, Provinces and Municipalities operate following different contractual and remunerative guidelines, generating great territorial disparity. We hope that this degree course will push, in general, towards a greater attention to the quality of inclusive paths within educational contexts and towards the professional training and recognition of specialized figures, in order to prevent learning difficulties and early school dropout.”

The master’s degree course, which will mainly be articulated in the area of Education Sciences and Linguistics, will be housed in the Department of Psychological, Pedagogical, Physical Exercise, and Training Sciences and aims to train a qualified professional figure to operate within schools of all levels and universities. It will also provide theoretical knowledge and appropriate operational skills to carry out a coordination and consultancy action to initiate and monitor territorial inclusive interventions and projects. Among the additional innovative elements of the upcoming master’s degree course, an approach to learning based on problem-solving.”

Università di Palermo, nasce il corso di laurea per pedagogisti esperti in lingua dei segni

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