Learning American Sign Language: Levels I & II - Beginning & Intermediate / Edition 2

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American Sign Language is a rich and complex language. Recently declared as an official language and recognized by 48 states as a foreign language, more and more high school teachers across the country are teaching American Sign Language as an elective.

Learning American Sign Language: Levels I & II – Beginning &Intermediate is designed to prepare teachers to successfullyinteract with American Sign Language (ASL) users. Lessons are structured around language needed for common-life situations, and examples are presented in the form of dialogues coupled with grammar and vocabulary instruction. Information is also included about the culture of deaf people in the United States.

Learners will discover that the book:

  • Contains lessons designed around the conversational language needed for common life situations.
  • Illustrates hundreds of sentences and vocabulary with over 2,000 high quality colorized drawings that aid in study and memory.
  • Contains over 100 grammar and cultural notes, 72 exercises, and charts of the American Manual Alphabet (Finger spelling) and ASL number system.
  • Teaches the rules of ASL in a natural order that is predictable and compatible with everyday language of native users of American Sign Language.
  • Incorporates information about the cultural lives of Deaf people in the United States.
  • Is supported by a video demonstrating all the conversations and important structures in the text.

Order the Video!

Video to Accompany American Sign Language, 2/e
Order No. 0-205-27554-0

American Sign Language students will find themselves captivated and entertained by this state-of-the-art Video that presents all 72 dialogues and each key structure from the text in a clear and natural way. Four internationally known Deaf actors animate the dialogues bringing life to the illustrations in the text allowing students to preview and review instructional materials at home to enhance their classroom learning.

About the authors:

Tom Humphries is Associate Director of the Teacher Education Program and also teaches in the Department of Communication at the University of California, San Diego. He is currently coordinating a program to train teachers of deaf children using a bilingual approach. Prior to this he taught at Gallaudet University in the Department of English for several years and later served as an Associate Dean for the San Diego Community College District where he coordinated the development of an ASL program and an interpreter-training program. He holds a Ph.D. in Cross Cultural Communication and Language Learning. Dr. Humphries is co-author with Carol Padden of Deaf in America: Voices from a Culture and several other books and articles related to ASL and the culture of Deaf people.

Carol Padden is a Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of California, San Diego where she teachers courses on language, culture and media. She is a graduate of Georgetown University and received a Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of California, San Diego. Her recent research includes studies of reading development in young deaf children and she has written extensively about the cultural lives of Deaf people in the United States. She received a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, in addition to numerous other awards and grants for her work. In addition to the books she has co-authored with Tom Humphries, she has published several other books and articles on American Sign Language structure. Humphries & Padden (Learning American Sign Language, 2e).

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205275533
  • Publisher: Pearson
  • Publication date: 7/18/2003
  • Edition description: Subsequent
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 357
  • Sales rank: 1,160
  • Product dimensions: 8.90 (w) x 10.70 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Table of Contents

All Units end with “Vocabulary.”

To the Student.

Units and Topics.

1. Introductions and Personal Information.


Personal information.

More Personal Information.

2. Learning ASL.

Going to Class.

Objects in the Classroom.

Showing You Understand and Asking for Help.

3. Politeness.

Asking Politely.


Interruptions and Apologies.

4. Descriptions.

Physical Appearance.


Personality and Character.

5. Requests.

Polite Commands.

Requests to Do Something.

More Requests.

6. Expressing Yourself.

How You Feel.

Opinions and Preferences.


7. More Descriptions.

Objects and Their Location.

Objects, Number, and Location.

How Many.

8. Family and Friends.

Family Information.

Family Relationships.

Friends and Acquaintances.

9. More Descriptions.

How Others Look.


Physical Features.

10. At Home and Daily Living.

Your Residence.

Objects in Your Residence.

What You Do Everyday.

11. Food and Food Shopping.

The Menu.



12. Offering and Declining.

Food and Drink.

Offering Help.

Declining and Explaining.

13. More Ways to Express Yourself.

Satisfaction and Dissatisfaction.

Agreement and Disagreement.

Concerns and Feelings.

14. Experiences and Current Activity.

An Event.

A Past Event.

Current Activity.

15. Future Plans and Obligations.

General Future Plans.

Time and Place to Meet.

Future Obligations.

16. Directions and Instructions.


Descriptions of Places.


17. Suggestions and Advice.


Time and Place.


18. Attitudes and Opinions.

What Others Think.



19. Recreational Activities.


A Sequence of Activities.

Seasonal Activities.

20. Travel—Places and Experiences.

Travel Experience.

More Travel Experience.

Places You Visited.

21. Occupations and Professions.

Occupations and Professions.

Job Activity.

Work History.

22. The Body, Health, and Emergencies.

Physical Conditioning.

Health and Health Problems.


23. Current Events.

Recent News.

Current Topics of Interest.

Current Issues.

24. How Things Are Done.

A Process.

Width, Length, and Height.

Measurements and Weight.

English Translations of Dialogues.

Vocabulary Index.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2014

    WHAT A SCAM!! The book is not worth $20 let alone $53 (rental +

    WHAT A SCAM!! The book is not worth $20 let alone $53 (rental + shipping). 
    The spine is barely holding together with clear tape. Some of the pages are warped. 
    Expedited shipping? Not really. 

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2004

    Great Illustrations, Helpful for Beginners

    I'm beginning ASL and I found this book very helpful because the illustrations were very detailed. We are learning about the deaf culture more from our teacher than from the book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 8, 2012

    Excellent supplement for beginning ASL students.

    It reads in the introduction, "you should be aware that this book is not intended to be self-instructional. This book will help you to recall and practice what your teacher has presented to you in class or what you have seen on practice videos." I just finished my first semester in ASL and this book is a great review for what I have learned and since it is in a different order, I am able to pick up on vocabulary not yet learned and able to add to sentences learned. It would also be ideal for those who dropped ASL and want to refresh their vocabulary later on. I recommend the DVD that accompanies the text.(ISBN 0-205-45342-2)

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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