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Gallaudet University Review

Saturday, December 3rd

2022 Sign Language Lesson Reviews

Gallaudet University Review 3 Star Rating

Gallaudet University

3 Star Rating
  • Variety of free sign language lessons
  • Videos and interactive lessons
  • Well-known, professional ASL University

Founded in 1864, Gallaudet University is a bilingual, private university federally chartered for the education of the deaf and hard of hearing. Their in-person campus is located in Washington D.C. They have over 50 degree programs available online or on campus. Students can get their Bachelors, Masters, or Doctorate degree from Gallaudet University. Although this is a professional, expensive University, they offer an ASL Connect program online for free.

Impressive selection of topics

"ASL for free" is a way for people to get their feet wet in the world of American Sign Language. It gives people a starting place to learn the basics of communication through videos and interactive lessons. We were surprised by how many topics there were to choose from including numbers, transportation, baby items, fruits, emotions, colors, animals, sports, weather, basic needs, and more.

Speed learning

Each video is about 45 seconds long, so you either need to internalize everything you're seeing really quickly or do a lot of stopping and rewinding. Videos show the word you're being taught and the sign language interpretation in an ongoing video. For example, if you're learning how to sign different fruits, you'll see an apple on the screen, then the sign, an orange, then the sign, grapes, then the sign, and so on.

Best Sign Language Lessons

Three lesson modules

The lesson modules are a bit more comprehensive than the videos: you are shown one sign at a time and asked to copy. There are three modules: basic personal information, making an encounter, and people. The lessons are short, but teach you how to identify vocabulary related to genders, describe what people are doing with action verbs, answer "yes" or "no" questions, and use appropriate pronouns. Each module has between 1 and 4 lessons.

Good for refreshing your memory

Obviously a huge selling point of using ASL for free through Gallaudet University is that it's... well, free. Because of this, it isn't an extensive program that tracks your progress over time or lets you choose lessons based on your knowledge level. This is just a free resource for anyone to use if they want to teach themselves the basics at whatever pace they want. It's probably best to refer to Gaulladet's free ASL course for quick refreshers rather than learning from scratch.

Brush up on your vocab

If you want all that Gaulladet has to offer for learning sign language, you'll have to sign up for their courses. Each class is about $316 and gives you credit toward a degree at Gallaudet University. This is an amazing institution who has served the deaf community for a long time, so whether you enroll in their courses or take advantage of their free ASL videos, it will be a great benefit to you. This isn't our first choice since you don't have an option to get extensive course content for a budget-friendly price, but it is a good place to refer to if you need to quickly brush up on your ASL vocabulary.

Where Can You Find the Best Sign Language Lessons?

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.

The Best Sign Language Lessons Compare Sign Language Lessons Compare Sign Language Lesson Reviews What are the best Sign Language Lessons Best Sign Language Lesson Reviews

Sign Language Lesson FAQ

According to the Communication Service for the Deaf, around one million people use American Sign Language (ASL) as their primary means of communication in the US and Canada. There are also approximately 16,000 people in the US who serve as interpreters with sign language.
Yes, because there is no universal sign language. Even among countries where the same spoken language is used (like Australia, England, and the United States), sign language users from different nations may not understand each other. There are also three different primary forms of sign language within the US: ASL, Pidgin Signed English, and Signed Exact English, with ASL being the most commonly used.
ASL has its own structure and is a language in its own right. The visual component of sign language means that the hands, arms, face and head are all used to convey meaning in ways that aren't an inherent part of spoken English. Also, many of the grammatical constructs common to English (like pluralized nouns and articles like "a" and "the" ) don't exist as words within American Sign Language.
You might think that sign language will be easy to learn quickly, because it seems similar to English. Experts say that's a misconception: expect it to take 2-3 years of regular study to get to an intermediate level of fluency, and an additional 2 years of interpretation training if you want to reach full fluency.
No. Some people use sign language to teach basic words and concepts to their babies, like "more" and "all done", before the children are able to talk. Sign language can also be used by people who are non-verbal. And, many learners like studying ASL just for the enjoyment of it!
Finding a sign language class near you might be difficult. While there are often beginner courses taught at libraries and community centers, or offered by colleges and universities, you might not be able to find lessons near you - or ones that fit your schedule and budget. The nice thing about online sign language lessons is that you can learn at your own pace. Need to watch the instructor do each new word or phrase 20 times before you feel you've got it? No problem!
Not necessarily. Some providers of ASL instruction charge a one-time fee for books, videos, and/or downloadable materials, while others operate on a month-to-month subscription basis for access to online coursework. Both approaches to sign language lessons are affordable, and are usually much less costly than paying for classes at a college or university.
Sometimes. It depends on where you buy your sign language lessons. We recommend that you see what each course offers as a preview before you sign up, whether that's a demo lesson, downloads of sample coursework, or a free 7-day trial. The more you know about how the lessons are taught and what's covered beforehand, the easier it will be to determine which ASL coursework is right for you.
Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

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:

  • Price and Pricing Structure. Your first question should probably be how much the lessons cost - and for how long. Some services give you unlimited lifetime access for a one-time fee, while others put you on a monthly or annual subscription.
  • Free Trial or Content. Most sign language lessons have a way for you to try them out before you make a commitment. Make the most of any free access or lessons to determine if you like the approach the platform takes to teaching ASL.
  • Number and Level of Lessons. How much will you be given to study? Does it match the time you have available and your current skills? If you already have some experience with sign language, the provider you choose needs to have room for you to grow.

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!

The Best Reviews of Sign Language Lessons