The Teaching American Sign Language (TASL) Program is a distance delivered master's degree with required onsite summer sessions which prepares instructors to teach American Sign Language (ASL) in a number of settings including secondary and post-secondary settings. The focus of this program is on pedagogical coursework as applicable to teaching ASL as a foreign or as a modern language, not learning or mastering ASL. Therefore, students must demonstrate ASL proficiency prior to acceptance into the program.
This program consists of 30 semester hours to be completed in five consecutive semesters and students will be expected to complete two teaching practica experiences, a portfolio, and a master's project as part of their graduation requirements. Students will also have the opportunity to take additional courses to obtain their teacher licensures in the state of Colorado which may also be accepted by other states.
Key Points to the Program
- The Teaching American Sign Language (TASL) Program is a distance-delivered master's degree with onsite summer sessions which prepares instructors to teach American Sign Language (ASL) in a number of settings including secondary and post-secondary settings.
- Two tracks are offered by the TASL Program, Master of Arts in Teaching ASL and Masters Plus Colorado Teacher Licensure. The master's program is a 30 credit hour program allowing students to graduate with a Masters of Art (M.A.) in Teaching American Sign Language (ASL) as a foreign or as a modern language. The Masters Plus Colorado teacher Licensure consists of 39 credits and allows students to obtain a Master of Arts in Teaching ASL and a Colorado teaching licensure upon graduation.
- The program is designed to provide quality instruction to prepare instructors to teach ASL. Courses are designed by content experts and are taught by highly qualified distance instructors.
- Prior to admission, students are required to provide evidence of ASL proficiency. The goal of the program is to prepare students to teach ASL, not to provide ASL instruction to the students. Therefore, ASL proficiency is an entry requirement. Much of the program content will be delivered in ASL and therefore, language fluency is necessary.
- As a bilingual program, all courses will employ different modes of communication, written English, ASL, and PSE through different forms of media.
- Students will complete two courses (6 credits) per semester for five consecutive semesters. For the Masters Plus Colorado Teacher Licensure, students will complete two to three courses (6-9 credits) per semester for five consecutive semesters.
- All courses are online with the exception of four weeks of onsite summer sessions for both summers.
- Students are required to complete a two week non-credit online orientation prior to starting their first course. This will allow students to familiarize themselves with online learning without the pressure of completing major coursework while checking out their technology and meeting with other students in the program. There is a $100 charge for the Online Orientation course.
- Students are encouraged to check their computer to determine whether it meets the minimum requirements.
- As part of graduation requirements, students are expected to complete two student teaching practicum experiences, a portfolio, and a master’s project.
- Please be forewarned that students may need to relocate for their practica experiences if there are no opportunities available locally. However - every effort will be made to locate practicum experiences locally before asking students to consider relocating for their practicum.
- Students must successfully complete their courses with a minimum of a 3.0 GPA to qualify for graduation.
- The TASL Program is housed in the DO IT Center in the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences and delivered through the Extended Campus (EC).
- This program is approved by the Colorado Department of Higher Education and the Colorado Department of Education.
- Upon graduation, students will be prepared to teach ASL in a variety of roles (i.e. ASL instructor, tutor, and specialist) to varying age groups (i.e. elementary, secondary, and postsecondary) in a variety of settings (i.e. deaf studies programs, interpreter education programs, and standalone foreign or modern language courses). In addition, students will be prepared to apply for provisional certification with ASLTA.
As academic requirements are met, you will request a degree audit to make sure everythign has been successfully completed. When that is confirmed, you will have the opportunity to participate in the UNC graduate commencement ceremony and celebrate your graduation with other UNC students, as well as your family and friends. Your diploma will be conferred via standard UNC processes/systems. You will be a UNC graduate!