Learning American Sign Language on the screen | The Arizona State Press – statepress.com

language students are turning to film and streaming services to enhance their learning experience. 

At ASU, American Sign Language students are watching videos to gain a deeper understanding of the nuances of the language. 

Lindsey Patterson, an ASL professor at ASU, has her masters in ASL and Deaf studies from Gallaudet University, and over 20 years of signing and interpreting experience. She frequently assigns videos to her students to review for homework. 

“It’s the one way that (my students) can see how the Deaf community interacts with each other that I can’t provide them in the classroom,” Patterson said. “To see the language truly in action is hugely beneficial for students to gain not only their receptive skills but also their expressive skills.”

Patterson added that often the media her students watch exposes them to vocabulary not included in the curriculum or used in the classroom. 

“One thing about the language (ASL) is it’s very visual. The more you’re exposed to it, the more you’re going to be able to pick it up,” said Sydney Brooks, a sophomore studying speech and hearing science and an ASL 101 teaching assistant. “It’s one thing seeing a sign used in a classroom setting, it’s another to see it used in public and used in social situations where you may not have thought to use a sign a certain way.”

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