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Sign Language 101 Review

Friday, May 24th

2024 Sign Language Lesson Reviews

Sign Language 101 Review 4.5 Star Rating

Sign Language 101

4.5 Star Rating
  • Pricing: Individual courses at $49.99 each, bundle options at discounted prices
  • Founded by Dr. Byron W. Bridges, a respected figure in Deaf Studies and ASL education
  • Courses are IACET accredited
  • Free videos covering basic vocabulary and complex elements of sign language
  • Paid courses offer HD videos, quizzes, and activity worksheets
  • Self-guided courses that allow learners to move at their own pace
  • ASL courses for children, taught by deaf actress Sandra Mae Frank
  • Active on various social media platforms, posting relevant vocabulary and occasional discount codes
  • 30-day refund policy if not satisfied with the course

Dr. Byron W. Bridges, a Deaf individual from a Deaf family who has used American Sign Language his entire life, is a respected figure in Deaf Studies and ASL education with degrees from California State University of Northridge, Gallaudet University, and Lamar University. Having over 30 years of experience, he co-founded Sign Language 101 with his son in 2013. His fun teaching style and charisma makes learning ASL really enjoyable - he reminds us a bit of Tom Hanks. It looks like his energy spreads because the other signers on this platform's social media channels are also fun to watch. The platform, initiated with a free course, has grown into a major online ASL hub, offering multiple levels of courses, ASL workbooks, the opportunity to earn Continuing Education Units, and even the first ASL course for children, thus reaching hundreds of thousands of learners globally.

IACET accredited

You'll be glad to know that the sign language lessons you're considering at Sign Language 101 are accredited by the International Accreditors for Continuing Education and Training (IACET). This accreditation is like a gold seal of approval: it means the courses are top-notch in terms of what you'll learn, how you'll learn it, and what you achieve. It's a promise that you'll be learning the very best the industry has to offer, and your teachers will be pros in their field.

What's in the free videos?

Under the Free Videos tab, you'll find a total of 10 video lessons that cover topics from basic vocabulary to more complex elements of sign language. These lessons will teach you about common words, numbers, colors, pronouns, how to read signs, hand shapes, signing speed, and more. The lessons also touch on specific topics like hobbies, people, body parts, and calendar words.

Best Sign Language Lessons

Paid course access expires after 1 year

In contrast, the paid ASL courses include all new HD video, quizzes, and activity worksheets to extend your learning. By doing the paid courses, you can track your progress across multiple devices and even earn a certificate of completion. The courses are self-guided, meaning you can start whenever you're ready, immediately after you've enrolled and registered. There's no set start or end date, so you can move at your own pace. But be aware - once you've purchased a course, you'll have access to it for only one year. (As far as we can tell, this is a recent change.) They recommend that you complete each level in a minimum of 5 weeks to give yourself enough time to practice between lessons.

$50 each or $90 for total access

There are three pricing options for learning ASL with Sign Language 101. Each option gives you different benefits, so let's break them down:

  • ASL Essentials Bundle ($89.99): This is a great starting point for committed newbies to ASL. This bundle combines two courses of 5 lessons each, Levels 1A & 1B, for a lower price than if you bought them separately. You'll learn the basics of ASL, including facial expressions, body language, numbers, colors, everyday signs, and more. It's a thorough introduction to ASL that can get you signing in no time.
  • Complete Course Bundle ($149.97): If you're serious about learning ASL, the complete bundle of 20 lessons is the best value. It includes all the content available on the platform, covering a wide variety of topics. You'll not only learn the basics but also dive deeper into more advanced topics. Just remember - your access expires after a year, so you'll need to stick to a schedule to get the most use out of all the lessons in this bundle.
  • Individual Courses ($49.99 each): Finally, if you want to take one course at a time, you can do that too. In order, they are: Getting Started with ASL, Building on the Basics of ASL, Elevating your Signing Skills, and Refining your ASL Skills. Each course contains 5 lessons.

We also spotted a pop-up advertising 15% off when you sign up for their mailing list.

ASL for kids

Sign Language 101 has two courses for kids: "Discovering Sign Language" and "Going Beyond the Basics". These are priced $49.99 each, and, just like the price structure for the adult courses, you can also get the bundle for $89.99. These lessons are taught by deaf actress Sandra Mae Frank, known for her roles in Broadway and TV shows like NBC's New Amsterdam. She uses clear signing and a lively teaching style that are loved by kids and parents alike.

Best Sign Language Lessons

30 days to get a refund

If you're not happy with your Sign Language 101 course, you can get your money back. But, there are three caveats. First, you can't have finished more than half of the course. Second, you can't have asked for a refund for this course before. And, you have to ask for the refund within 30 days of buying the course. Makes sense!

Active on Facebook, Instagram, Tiktok, and YouTube

We suggest you follow Sign Language 101 on social media, because they're always posting vocabulary relevant to current events. You can even find discount codes sometimes - we spotted a 30% discount on all courses over a recent holiday.

Highly rated by TopConsumerReviews

While it's hard to find student feedback on Sign Language 101, you don't need to rely on reviews when you can see for yourself - the site offers tons of free content for you to explore before deciding on a paid course. While we wish the paid lessons didn't expire after a year, we still think Sign Language 101 is an excellent resource for learners of all ages.

Where Can You Find the Best Sign Language Lessons Online?

Maybe you've decided to learn sign language because you have a deaf child, or perhaps there's a new student at your school who is hard of hearing and you'd like to befriend them. Or it could be that you're simply fascinated by this beautiful, expressive language and want to expand your communication skills. Whatever your reason, learning sign language opens up a new realm of possibilities for connection and understanding.

Learning sign language is unlike picking up any spoken language. You're not just memorizing vocabulary and grammar; you're learning to convey and interpret messages through gestures, facial expressions, and body language. Imagine expressing complex emotions or detailed narratives with your hands and face - it's a whole new way of thinking and communicating.

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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.
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Continued from above...

Also, keep in mind that sign language is not universal; each country, and sometimes regions within countries, has its own sign language with distinct rules and grammar. This means that learning American Sign Language won't necessarily enable you to communicate with someone who uses British Sign Language (BSL), for example.

Online sign language lessons have surged in popularity over the years. This can be attributed to several reasons that make these lessons an attractive option for a diverse range of learners. But one of the main reasons for the popularity of online sign language lessons is the unparalleled convenience they offer.

Sign language learners can access courses over the internet from anywhere in the world, eliminating the need for physical attendance at specific locations. This flexibility is particularly beneficial for people with busy schedules, letting them learn at their own pace and at times that suit their personal and professional commitments.

Another reason why online sign language lessons are so popular is they can provide a wealth of resources and interactive tools that enhance the learning experience. These can include video tutorials, live classes, interactive exercises, and community forums, all designed to foster a deeper understanding and proficiency in sign language.

The multimedia approach of online sign language lessons caters to different learning styles, ensuring that both visual and auditory learners can all benefit from the courses. High-quality video demonstrations by native signers help learners grasp the nuances of signs, facial expressions, and body language, which are crucial aspects of effective communication in sign language.

If you're considering online sign language lessons, you'll find them a flexible, accessible way to learn. Maybe your schedule is packed, and you need to fit lessons in between other commitments. Or you live in a place without a strong Deaf or hard-of-hearing community to practice with. Online lessons offer the chance to learn from the comfort of your home, with resources like video tutorials that show you exactly how to form each sign, and interactive courses that provide feedback on your signing skills.

When you're choosing an online sign language course, keep these points in mind:

  • Content quality and relevance. You'll want a course that covers everything from the basics to more advanced conversations. For example, if you're learning sign language to communicate with a deaf child, look for lessons that include signs for family, emotions, and daily routines.
  • Interactive learning tools. Opt for courses that make learning fun and effective with quizzes, games, or even a virtual practice buddy. This can help you practice signing in real-time, which is crucial for building your confidence.
  • Feedback and support. It can be helpful to have access to personalized feedback on your signing. Some platforms may offer video assessments or allow you to connect with experienced signers for advice.
  • Flexibility and accessibility. Whether you prefer learning late at night or during your morning commute, the best online lessons work with your schedule and are accessible on various devices.

Top Consumer Reviews has taken a close look at the available options and ranked the best sign language lessons to help you on your way. Whether you're just starting or looking to deepen your knowledge, we hope this guide aids you in finding the perfect sign language lessons to fit your life and learning goals.

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