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CCOG for ASL 103 archive revision 201403

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Effective Term:
Summer 2014 through Winter 2020
Course Number:
ASL 103
Course Title:
First Year American Sign Language III
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:

Course Description

Continues work of ASL 102, further developing all skills. Primary emphasis on the student's active communication in ASL. Includes grammar and culture information. Proficiency target level: Intermediate low. Prerequisite course must have been completed within one year of class enrollment; proficiency interview within one term.

Addendum to Course Description

ASL 103 is the third term of a three-term sequence in First Year American Sign Language at the college level. Communicative proficiency is the main objective of the sequence.

This course utilizes the Functional/Notional approach in learning grammar in the context of communicative activities. It is designed to help the students build their receptive skills, learn vocabulary through context, and develop strategies for figuring out meaning and to build upon that foundation. This course uses curriculum from, Signing Naturally, Level 1 Units 7 -12 and Curriculum Review and American Sign Language: A Student Text, Units 1-9.

Communicative proficiency is the main objective of the sequence. The curriculum and the lessons are designed to help the class and the program meet the five areas of Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons and Communities outlined by American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL). In addition, students will gain cultural awareness and appreciation.

Due to the design of the curriculum and the lessons, instructors and students will be required to have access to computers to use CD-Rom as part of teaching and to do the assignments.  In addition, ASL is a visual language so it is critical that the classrooms are of appropriate size (square not long and narrow) so students can sit in asemi-circle and be able to see everyone in order to participate in dialogues and develop their receptive skill by viewing other students and instructor’s dialogues.  This is critical for a maximum learning environment.

ASL 102 is offered for 5 hours of transferable credit. It satisfies part of the foreign language requirement for the B.A. degree, counts as an elective for the A.A. degree, and contributes to the general education requirement for other Associate Degrees.

Prerequisite: Successful completion of ASL 102 or the equivalent language experience in ASL as determined by the Sign Language Proficiency Interview. Students whose skill level in ASL is more advanced than that of ASL 102 will not be admitted.

 Special Fee: ($15.00 to $20.00 to CyberASL as part of course requirement)

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Are able to handle successfully a variety of uncomplicated, basic and communicative tasks and social situations in a culturally acceptable manner.
  • Can ask and answer questions and participate in simple conversations on topics beyond the most immediate needs; e.g. giving directions, describing others, making requests, about family and occupations in depth, attributing qualities to others, talking about routines and maintaining and interrupting conversation at appropriate times.
  • Continue to apply language-learning skills outside the language classroom.
  • Act with respect and better understanding of Deaf people and ASL, with an appreciation for their linguistic and cultural diversity.
    To have a passing grade, students will exhibit mastery of target language at Intermediate Mid level (ACTFL guideline) at completion of course.

Integrative Learning

Students completing an associate degree at Portland Community College will be able to reflect on one’s work or competencies to make connections between course content and lived experience.

Course Activities and Design

Uses activities and materials from Signing Naturally, Level 1, Units 1-9 and American Sign Language: A Student Text, Units 1-9 as stated specifically in Addendum to Course Description.

Students are expected to attend all classes, participate actively in classroom activities, and prepare expressive homework assignments. Students may video record their work in the classroom or Lab or at home (as indicated by the instructor).  ASL will be used in the classroom at all times. No spoken language or voice will be permitted in the classroom. Students should plan to spend at least one hour in preparation and practice outside of class for each class hour.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Assessment strategies include observation of students' in-class receptive and expressive use of ASL, written quizzes on cultural knowledge and on receptive skills, and videorecording of students' expressive use of ASL. Students will be assessed in their competence in using the language as demonstrated by the quality of receptive and expressive preparation and participation and assignments. Attendance is an important factor but it is not used as assessment tool. As part of this course, the students will also take quizzes online through Cyber ASL. 

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

The course focuses on the acquisition and correct use of parameters, non-manuals signals, grammatical markers, grammatical structures, functional vocabulary, and cultural concepts for the purpose of successful communication in ASL. Successful students have reviewed, expanded and perfected previously learned material, have practiced, and will be able to use the following communication topics and structures:

Explaining and giving directions, making requests, and talking about routines

Identifying and describing others, talking about family and occupations, and attributing qualities to others


Cardinal Numbers and Ordinal Numbers: Age, Ranking, Placements, Money numbers, multiples of 10 and 11, Clock numbers

List on weak hand and reference to point

Number form, movement and palm orientation for letter combinations, hand position

Cross-cultural communication, and Brief History of Deaf America

Non-manual Signals (conversational behaviors), Grammatical markers, Grammatical Structures

Sentence Types


Contrastive structures

Narrative Structures

Negate sentences, Negative statement

Yes/No questions

Wh-questions: what, who, where, how-many, which, when, how come, how long

Rhetorical questions


Use various transitions in context

Pronouns, Personal pronouns, Possessive pronouns, third person personal and possessive pronouns, plural pronouns

Use of spatial location, role shift,

Verbs: action, agreement verbs, verb types

Word order with time signs, and frequency

Appropriate form, movement, palm orientation, hand position for fingerspelling words and numbers

Use of grammatical markers and non-manual signals

Use of signing space, spatial agreement, referring to established location, map orientation (vertical and horizontal), transitions


Eye gaze

Weak hand as reference point, weak hand functioning as a dominant hand

Pauses, engaging the audience

Tell a cohesion story, retell story, setting up of a story


Non-manual signals (facial markers)