Where to learn ASL

The other month I gave ideas of how you can learn ASL. Now I am going to give you specifics, for the Bakersfield area, the pros and cons of each location/ modality and the total cost that each option offers.

I have been trying to learn ASL for about 5 years now, after having taken a class about 15 years ago in High School, and kicking myself for not taking it in College. So now a mother of 3 I have been trying to find the best way to learn ASL. I have studied the different modalities for the last 3 years and this is what I have come up with, for Bakersfield specifically.
1. BC classes - $968+ books
    - ASL 1-4: (4 credits each at $46/unit (if resident of CA) +$13 Health care +$4 Student Center + $1 Student Rep +$40 Parking (optional)) 4= $968
   - In person classes
   - Local teachers well known in Deaf community in Bakersfield, local signs
   - on East Side, commute 2 days a week. Class offering times get limited the higher you go
2. Eissler - $25 - cash only
  - Parent organization
  - local Deaf teacher
  - focuses on signs you use in everyday life
  - every few months they restart the class
  - can take kids to class
  - only one level offered
3. BGLAD $40 - cash only
  - Local Deaf Community class
  - Deaf Teachers
  - ASL 1 class
  - offered every few months
  - cheaper than BC
  - only one level offered
4. Gallaudet University $2583 +Books
   - Online
   - ASL 1-3 $861/course
   - Premier Deaf College in country
   - looking at adding more advanced ASL classes in future (4-6)
   - do a placement screening before you start a course to make sure you are in the right class
   - Classes done at your own pace, to be completed in a set amount of time
   - offer Online certificate programs as well
5. ASL University- free or $966
   - Online, his taped university classes for free
   - options for University credit at $483/ course (ASL 1&2)
   - does have basic outline for ASL 3 &4 but not at organized as ASL 1&2
   - Teacher answers questions from students
   - has a facebook page
   - has a You Tube channel that he updates
   - site is full of link, you can get lost
6. BYU Indpendent Study- $1000
   - HS level courses splits Year 1 & 2 into 4 courses $250/ course
   - Teacher led course
   - one on one signing appointments
   - student discussion boards
   - instructor hosted wiki
   - UC approved for this academic year
6. SignIt! $80/ Units 1&2
   - Online
   - From creators of Signing Time, teaches ASL 1
   - different than all other online and video Signing Lessons I have seen
   - offer free sample lesson to give you an feel for format
   - working on being credentialed with a University
   - Not finished, currently 2 of 10 Units are completed
   - Free for those with children Deaf or Hard of Hearing under age of 3 through My Deaf Child
7. DCMP- free
   - online library, has an App
   - must sign up as a student of ASL
   - check out videos, online
   - have many different subjects to watch, different lengths of videos
   - children's- professionals, can sort by grade level of ASL knowledge
   - different ASL video lessons including the 'classic' "Meet the Bravo's"
8. Signing Time- $350 -online/ $700- Video
   - Online $10/ea , Video $17/ea
   - Aimed at teaching children under 8
   -ST Series 1&2 Teaches over 1,000 signs
   - Includes Baby Signing Time focused on children under 3
   - ST Sentences teaches basics of ASL grammar
   - Sales are offered throughout the year, videos sold individually, and 2-3/ year have a $10            sale. The full set often goes on sale a few times throughout the year, esp around Black Friday.

I hope this gives you some ideas on what will be a good choice for you and your family. I know which I want to do, and what I will probably do.

I personally have tried Signing Time, DCMP, SignIt, ASL University, and (started) BC- was too pregnant to continue. I look forward to continuing my education with more formal training.


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