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Sign Language Teachers

Meeting the Need for ASL Teachers

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Updated July 28, 2009

Many people are interested in learning sign language. Someone has to teach them. A professional, certified teacher can make all the difference in whether the "student" develops good sign language skills and an understanding of deafness. Organizations

There is an organization sponsored by the National Association of the Deaf, the American Sign Language Teachers Association (ASLTA). ASLTA has state chapters nationwide, some of which have their own web sites. According to Florida's web site, the ASLTA had its roots in an organization called the Sign Instructors Guidance Network (SIGN). Since the mid-70s, the SIGN organization, which evolved into the ASLTA, has been evaluating sign language teachers and holding conventions. Certification

The ASLTA certifies sign language teachers. Their web site has information on the certification levels and requirements, plus an application form. Some states have certification requirements for ASL teachers, particularly those who teach in public schools.

Discussion

Sign language teachers and prospective sign language teachers, can discuss teaching ASL on the TeachASL discussion list. Another discussion list that addresses sign language teaching though teaching sign is not the primary focus of the list, is the Creative Teaching list.

Education

Sign language teachers have to learn how to teach sign language! For instance, Gallaudet University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sign Language that prepares students to teach ASL. One of the courses offered is "Methods of Teaching Sign Communication."

Employment

It is not hard to find a job as a sign language teacher. ASLTA posts job announcements on its web site, and additional positions can be found via the employment subject page.

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Signing with Children
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