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Whether you're interested in connecting with people in the Deaf community, trying to communicate with a non-verbal child, or facing hearing loss yourself, you're in good company. It's estimated that over 500,000 people in the US and Canada use American Sign Language (ASL).
If you're hoping to learn to sign, it's important to choose lessons that teach not just the signs themselves but also about Deaf culture and the differences between ASL and English. (It surprises many people when they learn that they don't correspond in a 1:1 fashion. In fact, ASL often uses a completely different word order, and facial expressions are a critical component of using ASL fluently.
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Start ASL is a comprehensive sign language learning platform with hundreds of lessons spanning three fluency levels - all at no charge. You'll only have to pay if you'd like access to instructor feedback, online practice events, and/or a completion certificate to get credit from your school or job. This service can also connect you with one of six tutors if you need even more personalized instruction. Whether you're just starting out or you're a more advanced ASL student, Start ASL has plenty for you to learn. This is our most recommended option among sign language lessons today.
Sign It ASL is a comprehensive program for students wanting to become fluent in American Sign Language. They have hours of lessons on a wide range of topics and practice tests and quizzes to reinforce learning. Different packages are available depending on your skill level and how many lessons you want to access. Families with children 36 months or younger that have hearing loss are eligible to get Sign It ASL for free. This is an amazing place to turn if you're serious about putting in the time to study.
ASL Deafined isn't the flashiest platform, but it has everything a beginner would need to start grasping the basics of American Sign Language. For just $36/year you'll have full access to hundreds of video lessons, quizzes, grammar tips, and progress tracking. Whether you're a beginner or at interpreter-level, ASL Deafined has helpful material for you. This is a fabulous place to turn if you're looking for an inexpensive way to improve your ASL knowledge.
Sign Language 101 offers a wealth of ASL lessons for free, right on their website and through their social media channels. Your one-time fee - $30 for either Level 1 or Level 2, or $50 for both - takes you even further, letting you track progress and come away with a certificate of completion at the end. There's no risk in seeing what these sign language lessons have to offer, and we encourage you to give them a try.
Lingvano is the sign language learning platform that might take you by surprise. You won't know much about their program until you create a complimentary account and try a few of their lessons - and then your only disappointment will be having to pay to keep studying. Thousands of users give Lingvano a perfect five-star rating, whether they use it through a browser or as a smartphone app. It's definitely more spendy than some ASL lessons out there, but if you've got the cash and the commitment Lingvano is a great resource.
In a sea of subscription-based sign language lesson platforms, Rocket Sign Language is an oasis of calm - because you'll only pay once to access their program for life. For less than $70, you'll get nearly 100 hours of instruction in beginning-to-intermediate ASL. Rocket doesn't have all of the fancy tech features you'll see with some rival providers of sign language lessons, but it's a fantastic option if you want to spend money just once.
Gallaudet University is one of the most well-known universities for the deaf community and is located in Washington D.C. They offer both online and in-person courses for those working toward either a bachelors, masters, or doctorate degree. Their website features a free crash course on the basics of vocabulary and conversation. You can't track progress or learn based on your current knowledge of ASL, so there are definitely better options if you want to fully immerse yourself in learning American Sign Language. However, if you need a fast refresher on a lot of basic words, this is a risk-free resource to use.
No surprises here: The ASL App delivers sign language lessons through your smartphone. Whether you've got Android or iOs, you can access a decent amount of free content before deciding if you want to pay for specific topics or a one-off fee of $9.99 to get everything. Unfortunately, you'll find as many one-star reviews for this platform as five-star ones (in the hundreds): if it works for you, great, but because this app tends to be unreliable and may not be getting updated regularly, we suggest looking at other options for ASL before spending money here.
Skillshare includes sign language lessons in their "online learning community" , along with thousands of other topics. While some of the individual ASL instructors providing content here get rave reviews, the company itself earned an "F" rating from the BBB for not allowing users to cancel before their free trial ends and other shady practices. Get your ASL instruction from a more reputable service and spare yourself the grief.
Sign language lessons that include different instructors can help you see that individuals often have their own unique way of signing - just like someone from the South has a spoken accent that's very distinct from a New Yorker. Going back to the question of where to learn ASL, it might be possible to find classes nearby at a community college or even a library. Will they fit your schedule? Your budget?
Maybe, maybe not. Fortunately, there are many providers of sign language lessons online that let you study at your own pace, any time of day or night. (And hey, unlike other language lessons, you don't have to worry about disturbing people as you practice ASL in a quiet public place!)
What should you look for as you choose where to take sign language lessons through the internet? Here are some suggestions that can help you narrow down the options:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Sign Language lessons available today. We hope these reviews help you open new doors of communication as you learn to sign fluently in ASL right away!
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