American Sign Language

American Sign Language (ASL) is one of the most-studied languages in American universities and is the third-most-used language in the U.S. Learning ASL opens doors of opportunity for careers in interpretation services, makes communication possible with those in the deaf community and extends the reach of client services in health care, legal services and education.

ASL classes at Wake Tech are taught by both hearing and deaf instructors and make use of a video-based curriculum.

Looking for a private class for your group? We can tailor our courses to meet the unique needs of your business, church, civic or social group.

For more information, email [email protected].

Search by course name, course number, class section number, or keyword

Can't find what you are looking for? Contact us | View Full Non-degree Catalog | View Available Non-degree Classes

Discover Sign Language IISEF-3001AAE1 available classes
Learn to build phrases and sentences with the vocabulary you used in Discover Sign Language 1, as well as some new vocabulary. You will practice phrases and sentences by recording your own signing and uploading them for review. Not only that, but you will also continue to ex...
American Sign Language ICOM-3709B2
Master the basics of speaking and understanding American Sign Language (ASL) in part one of the four-part ASL series. In this course you'll learn the manual alphabet, including numbers, develop conversation skills, and learn about culturally appropriate behaviors. Students s...
American Sign Language IICOM-3709C2
Continue to develop your abilities in American Sign Language in part two of the ASL series. Lessons cover recognition and demonstration of more sophisticated grammar in ASL, with a focus on increasing fluency and accuracy. Students will also continue to expand cultural aware...
American Sign Language IIICOM-3709D2
Take your American Sign Language abilities to the next level in part three of the ASL series. Lessons cover recognition and demonstration of more advanced grammar in ASL, with a focus on increasing fluency and accuracy in the use of narratives. Students are encouraged to th...
American Sign Language IVCOM-3709E2
Achieve advanced fluency and accuracy in American Sign Language in part four of the ASL series. Lessons cover recognition and demonstration of advanced grammar in ASL, as well as cultural norms for conversation and story-telling. Students are expected to participate in socia...
Sign Language I Part ACOM-3709A3
Up to 500,000 people in the United States use American Sign Language to communicate. Take the first step towards becoming a part of this language community by enrolling today. In this course, you will study the fundamental elements of American Sign Language and its’ cultural...
Sign Language I Part BCOM-3709B3
This course is the second course in a series designed to introduce the fundamental elements of American Sign Language within a cultural context. Emphasis is placed on the development of basic expressive and receptive skills.
Sign Language I Part CCOM-3709C3
Have you learned American Sign Language – but need more practice conversing? This intermediate-level course focuses on conversation skills on topics introduced in parts A and B. All instruction and classroom discussions will take place in sign language. Students will be aske...
Sign Language I Part DCOM-3709D3
Improve your American Sign Language skills with practice! This intermediate-level training in ASL focuses on building conversation skills. The course is taught completely in sign language – with no speaking/voicing – and students are expected to refrain from spoken communica...
Sign Language II Part ACOM-3709E3
Continue to develop communication skills in American Sign Language (ASL). Review finger-spelling vocabulary, basic sentence structure, and grammatical features of ASL. Learn how to communicate at a more complex level, including non-manual signs, culturally appropriate behavi...
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Frequently asked questions

Isn’t it really hard for adults to learn another language?

Yes and no. Language learning requires quite a bit of time and effort. The busy lives of most adults don't allow much extra time to memorize, study and practice another language. However, the self-discipline and life experience of adult learners contribute to successful language learning. Studies show that learning another language is great exercise for our brains and can result in increased cognitive function. It's never too late to learn another language.

If my instructor is deaf, how will I communicate with him or her?

In some cases, introductory levels will be taught by hearing instructors. In the case where an introductory level is taught by a deaf instructor, interpreters will be present on the first night of class. Our instructors are expert at making sure they are able to communicate with their students.

Do these classes require us to "turn off" our voices?

Yes. Unless absolutely necessary, students will not use their voices during an ASL class. Introductory levels may use more voicing, but students will use ASL as much as possible as they progress through the levels.

Why do we use a video-based curriculum?

ASL is a language of movement. Changes in facial expression and the movement of hands are used to indicate meaning. Movement is nearly impossible to capture in a static image found in traditional textbooks. Video-based lessons provide a way for students to practice with accuracy and precision at home.

Can I learn ASL on my own with videos?

There are many great resources for people who would like to learn ASL on their own. These resources can be great supports for learning grammar and vocabulary. However, if we want to develop communicative competence, we need to practice using ASL with real people.

Is it possible to become fluent within a few months?

Most people require quite a lot of time and effort to acquire another language. The old adage "use it or lose it" was never more true than with language acquisition. Regardless of age or stage, second languages require lots of practice. The more time a person is able to devote to memorizing and practicing signs, the faster they will acquire ASL.

Is there a placement test for ASL?

We do not currently have a placement test available for any of our languages. If you're not sure which level to take, we can send you a list of topics covered in each level to help you decide which class is right for you.

Will these classes transfer for high school or college credit?

These classes are all non-credit and will not count for transfer credit.

Can my child take one of the language classes?

Students must be at least 16 years old on the first day of class. Students under 18 must register in person.

How often are classes offered?

Classes begin throughout the year and do not necessarily follow a semester schedule.

The class I would like to take isn't offered right now. Can I add my name to a notification list?

Yes. If the class you would like to take is not available, click the "Notify me when offered" button to register your email address. You will be notified as soon as a section of that class becomes available.