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How Do I Find and Hire a Sign Language Tutor?


Updated April 24, 2008

Sign language or interpreting students may want to hire or find a sign language tutor to help them practice their American Sign Language skills. Parents of deaf and hard of hearing children also sometimes seek sign language tutors to help them more quickly master sign language.

People seeking sign language tutors, and those offering sign language tutoring services, have multiple options. Notices can be placed on general advertising websites or iin newsletters of social service agencies for deaf and hard of hearing individuals. There are even databases that list sign language tutors.

Sign Language Tutor Advertisements

I've seen a good number of general advertisements for sign language tutors on Craigslist.org, a popular online classifieds site. A typical advertisement might outline a request for a sign language tutor for a high school student, or detail the services of an ASL tutor (hours, location, etc.) Ads placed by tutors may also indicate what level of sign language skills they can tutor (beginner's to conversational, for example) and their hourly rates.

Databases of Tutors

Apparently the need for sign language tutoring is big enough that sign language tutoring is one of the categories in some tutor databases. "Sign language tutoring" was found listed in these databases:

ASL Tutors' Websites

Some ASL tutors set up websites to market their services. A few examples I found while searching the web: The online journal ASLPah.com sometimes carries discussions of ASL tutoring.

Why Not Just Try Self-Tutoring?

This is a question that came to my own mind, as well. There doesn't, however, seem to be much research that looks into how effective sign language tutors are compared to self-tutoring methods, such as videos, computer programs, etc. Have you had a positive experience with either method? Share your thoughts in the About.com Deafness Forum in the thread on Sign Language Tutoring.
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