American Sign Language (ASL)

Until just a few years ago, Yale students could study ASL only through the DILS (Directed Independent Language Study) program; they could not get credit for such study nor use it to fulfill the language requirement. In Spring 2017, after students expressed strong interest in having ASL courses offered as part of the Yale College curriculum and faculty enthusiastically endorsed the idea, the administration granted permission and allocated resources to start a three-semester pilot program (January 2018—June 2019).

Given the high demand for ASL during the pilot program, Yale decided to continue the teaching of ASL in the academic year 2019-20 and beyond. If there is sustained demand and interest, as we expect, ASL will become a permanent part of the Yale College curriculum and the number of courses offered will increase to meet demand.

ASL Courses

Term: Fall 2020

ASL 110 1 American Sign Language 1

An introduction to American Sign Language (ASL), with emphasis on vocabulary, ASL grammar, Deaf Culture and Conversational skills. Use of visual material (DVD), communicative activities, grammar drills, classifiers and Deaf Culture study. ASL 120 is not required to earn credit for ASL 110 

Professor: Kristen Guynes
Course Type: ASL
Term: Fall 2020
Day/Time: Monday - Friday, 3:30 pm to 4:20 pm

ASL 110 2 American Sign Language 1

An introduction to American Sign Language (ASL), with emphasis on vocabulary, ASL grammar, Deaf Culture and Conversational skills. Use of visual material (DVD), communicative activities, grammar drills, classifiers and Deaf Culture study. ASL 120 is not required to earn credit for ASL 110

Professor: Kristen Guynes
Course Type: ASL
Term: Fall 2020
Day/Time: Monday - Friday, 4:30 pm to 5:20 pm

ASL 130 American Sign Language III

Building on ASL 120, this course covers in depth the structure of ASL grammar, fingerspelling, narratives, and visual communication. Students develop expressive and receptive skills in storytelling and dialogue. 

Prerequisites: ASL 120 or a placement evaluation by professor. 

Professor: Mikey Barrett
Course Type: ASL
Term: Fall 2020
Day/Time: Monday -- Friday, 10:30a-11:20a

ASL FAQ

Who will teach the ASL courses this coming year (2020-21)?

During Fall 2020 Kristen Guynes will offer two sections of ASL 110, and Michael (“Mikey”) Barrett will be offering the ASL 130 course.

Are enrollments capped?

Enrollment in ASL 110 will be capped at 10. We will offer two sections of the course, though we recognize that student demand might be greater than the two sections can accommodate.

Enrollement in ASL 130 will be capped at 14. (If demand exceeds this number, we might consider raising the cap to 16.)

How will students be chosen for ASL 110 and 130?

Students should select ASL 110 or 130 through the Pre-registration system, between August 7th and August 12th. In addition, students applying for ASL 110 should fill out this survey. You will be informed about whether or not you have been accepted into each course by 5:00pm on August 17th.

Do ASL courses count toward fulfillment of the Foreign Language Requirement (FLR)?

Yes, they do. Please consult the academic regulations for information about the foreign language distributional requirement.