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Homeschool and ASL:

In a message dated 6/4/2003 3:26:59 PM Central Daylight Time, annmarie@_______.com writes:


Dear Bill,

My daughter found your awesome site. She is currently homeschooled and going into the 9th grade. I'm interested in knowing the cost of the on-line course and is a book required? How do you show documentation of her quizzes and exams (as I would need this to present as proof of the course). One last question, a semester is how many hours of work?
Very Interested,
Catherine and Ann Marie B______
 



Catherine and Ann Marie,

A typical college-level four-credit-hour course following a semester calendar system entails 60 hours of classroom work plus 1 to 3 hours of homework per classroom-hour of instruction, plus an hour or two for a comprehensive end-of-course exam (otherwise known as a "final").

Each ASL University course has been designed to provide an online equivalent to a college-level ASL course.  For example, level 1 covers dozens of grammar concepts, over 400 vocabulary items, the manual alphabet, numbers, and basic information related to Deaf culture and history. The above content is  organized into 20 sequential lessons. Each lesson focuses on a general theme and presents corresponding grammar concepts, vocabulary, and practice sentences. Assignments include 20 receptive quizzes, a 500-word research paper, an expressive video project, and a receptive final. To facilitate the administration of quizzes, the 20 lessons were divided into four units. A CD ROM has been designed for each unit. Each CD contains five quizzes presented in full-motion video.  The CDs are known as "The Course Pack." 

Each higher level of the program presents additional important grammar concepts, 400 new signs, 400 additional signed phrases and more supporting information about Deaf culture and history. Eventually there will be 10 levels plus additional special topic areas.

A book  is not required, but you are encouraged to check your local library for available resources.

The lessons and information at Lifeprint.com (ASL University) are free for self study.  If you are homeschooling your child (or if you would like to test your own progress) I suggest you  buy the coursepack CDs. Your student can take the quizzes on the CDs by watching the signed questions and typing her responses in English.  Then you can check to see if she is right by using the master answer sheet that is included on each CD.  (On the other hand, if you are an expert at ASL, you don't need to buy the CDs, you can just sign the quizzes to her yourself.)

Next you would need to find a friend or associate who is skilled in ASL to test your daughters expressive skills. 

Another option is to use a "receptive skills only approach."  If all she is being tested on is her "receptive" skills, then you could use the phrase "ASL Level-1 Receptive" as the title for the course.  The "Receptive" label helps identify the fact that the course only accounts for receptive skill development. Some educators blanch at that idea, but I think it is legitimate since many colleges allow "reading / listening" proficiency examinations for fulfillment of foreign language requirements.

If you have access to someone who can test her expressive skills for a comprehensive final then you could use the normal "ASL Level-1" course title.

For documentation you can use the "Lifeprint Extended Transcript System " Continuing Education Unit Documentation Form:  [Click here for the form]

Of course, that form is only as authoritative as the person who signs the acknowledgement at the bottom.  As a homeschooling mother it is up to you how you want to handle that. If your school requires additional validity, you can have your daughter tested by an ASL evaluator and have him or her sign the form.

If you have the money, you can officially register her at ASL University whereby I will set up a custom syllabus, send her the ASL Coursepack CDs, personally answer her ASL questions in a timely fashion via email or instant messaging, send a receptive final on CD, evaluate an expressive video project / final exam, and provide full documentation of participation in the program including a letter grade.

Best wishes in your ASL endeavors,

Dr. Bill Vicars

 


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