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Effective: Late Spring 8-Week, 2017/2018

AMSL 101: American Sign Language I

Course Description

This course is an entry-level introduction to American Sign Language and fingerspelling. It is designed to explore the fundamentals of ASL including basic vocabulary and language structure.  Students are engaged in active language production using authentic conversations.  Course meets three hours of Foreign Language graduation requirement.

Prerequisite: None

Proctored Exams: None



Syllabus Contents

Textbooks

Required

  • Smith, Cheri, Ella Mae Lenz, and Ken Mikos. Signing Naturally: Student Workbook (Units 1-6). 8th Ed.. San Diego, CA: Dawn Sign Press, 2008.
    • ISBN-978-1-58121-210-5

MBS Information

Textbooks for the course may be ordered from MBS Direct. You can order

For additional information about the bookstore, visit http://www.mbsbooks.com.


Course Overview

This entry level course is designed to introduce students to basic vocabulary, sign production, non-manual markers and language structure. Students will learn ASL vocabulary, cardinal numbers, ordinal numbers, fingerspelling, conversational signs, descriptions, basic directions, commands, time signs, describing shapes, language backgrounds, narratives, biography of deaf individuals, and cultural notes.


Technology Requirements

Participation in this course will require the basic technology for all online classes at Columbia College:
  • A computer with reliable Internet access
  • A web browser
  • Acrobat Reader
  • Microsoft Office or another word processor such as Open Office

You can find more details about standard technical requirements for our courses on our site.

To complete assignments specific to this course participants will require the following:
  • Video camera or web cam,
  • YouTube account (Note: each student has a YouTube account that comes along with their CougarMail account)
  • In addition to reliable internet access that is required for all online classes, it is highly recommended that students use broadband internet access for this course as video is the main medium of course delivery and assignment submission


Course Objectives

  • To understand American Deaf culture.
  • To understand ASL grammatical structure.
  • To understand signs expressively and receptively.
  • To understand numbers expressively and receptively.
  • To understand fingerspelling expressively and receptively.
  • To understand non- manual markers.
  • To understand conversational/cultural behaviors using ASL.
  • To understand the basic components of American Sign Language.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate the use of basic components of American Sign Language skills in a variety of interactive situations.
  • Identify and describe general elements of Deaf culture.
  • Demonstrate the use of appropriate ASL grammatical structure.
  • Demonstrate the use of numbers expressively and receptively
  • Demonstrate the use of fingerspelling expressively and receptively.
  • Demonstrate ability to use and understand ASL expressively and receptively.
  • Demonstrate the use of appropriate non- manual markers using ASL.

Grading

Grading Scale
Grade Points Percent
A 796-885 90-100%
B 708-795 80-89%
C 620-707 70-79%
D 531-619 60-69%
F 0-530 0-59%
Grade Weights
Assignment Category Points Percent
Discussions 70 8%
Practice Exercises 120 14%
Video Submissions 70 8%
Performance Video Exams 200 23%
Self-Assessment of Performance Video Exams 100 11%
Quizzes 175 20%
Final Exam 150 17%
Total 885 100%


Schedule of Due Dates

Week 1
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 10 Wednesday/Sunday
ASL Tips and Quiz 13 Wednesday
Quality Videos Quiz 12
Video Upload Practice 0
Video Submission 10 Sunday
Week 2
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 10 Wednesday/Sunday
Practice Exercises 10 Wednesday
Assessment Quiz 25 Sunday
Video Submission 10
Week 3
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 10 Wednesday/Sunday
Practice Exercises 20 Wednesday
Assessment Quiz 25 Sunday
Video Submission 10
Week 4
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 10 Wednesday/Sunday
Practice Exercises 20 Wednesday
Assessment Quiz 25 Sunday
Video Submission 10
Week 5
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 0 Wednesday
Practice Exercises 40
Assessment Quiz 25 Sunday
Video Submission 10
Performance Video Exam 1 100
Self-Assessment for Performance Video 1 50
Week 6
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 10 Wednesday/Sunday
Practice Exercises 30 Wednesday
Assessment Quiz 25 Sunday
Video Submission 10
Week 7
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 10 Wednesday/Sunday
Assessment Quiz 25 Sunday
Video Submission 10
Week 8
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 10 Wednesday/Saturday
Performance Video Exam 2 100 Saturday
Self-Assessment for Performance Video 2 50
Final Exam 150
Total Points 885

Assignment Overview

Book and DVD Assignments

The purpose of the Book & DVD assignments is for you to get the core vocabulary and grammar exposure; these will provide you with the main content of the class. Additionally, due to the unique nature of this course it is imperative that you have a copy of the book for the first day of class.

You should complete all activities within the book and watch the DVD clips assigned for the week before completing your weekly work. All assignments rely heavily on this information. Please note that there are significant weekly learning and study aids available through the text. Spend time reviewing these learning resources so you can maximize your learning experience.


Instructor Videos

The purpose of the instructor videos is to expand on what you are learning in your book and DVD. Each week in the Content area of the course there are videos of the course developer demonstrating how to properly sign specific words or phrases. These videos are required; however, like the book and DVD, they are not scored. I suggest you view the videos weekly before submitting your Performance Video Exams or Weekly Video Submissions. However, the instructor videos do not contain all the signs you are to learn, so be sure to also work through your book and DVD; do not rely only on the instructor videos.

Discussions

The purpose of the discussion questions in this course is for you to engage with others (including myself) as we learn about Deaf culture. Language should always be learned in the context of the culture in which it is used, and the same goes for American Sign Language.

Each week there will be discussion prompts related to deaf culture. You will be expected to post an initial post by Wednesday and at least 2 substantive replies to your peers within that discussion by Sunday.


Video Submissions

The purpose of the weekly video submissions is twofold: (1) to provide you with an opportunity to demonstrate your expressive ASL skills, and (2) for me to provide you with feedback on those skills. It’s something you should look forward to doing! These are not tests or quizzes, but opportunities for feedback that will help you in your performance assessments and overall expressive language skills. My feedback to you will be text and/or signed, and may include links to videos for you to watch if there are errors in your signing.

You will complete seven Weekly Video Submissions. These are student-created videos (self-made recordings) that demonstrate your ASL skills. Directions for the Weekly Video Submission are located in the Content area of the course under the appropriate week. Students are advised to complete the Book & DVD assignments as well as watch the “Instructor Videos” for the week before completing the video submissions.

Submitting videos:
Videos must be submitted using YouTube; as a student of Columbia College you all have a YouTube account associated with your CougarMail account. You may submit your video as “unlisted”. You are urged to refer to the “Video checklist” before submitting the assignment to make sure your video permissions are set correctly and your video is good quality.

The following reasons will earn you automatic points off of your video score and no instructor feedback:

  • If your video is set to PRIVATE (-10 points, I won’t be able to see it at all)
  • If there is more than one video to complete the assignment (-10 points)
  • If the video is not of good quality ( -10 points if I cannot see your signs)
  • Ifyou forget to send the linkor for any other reason I can’t view your video )-10 points)

Practice Exercises

The purpose of the practice exercises is, like the instructor videos and exercises, to expand on what you are learning in your Book and DVD and give you an opportunity to practice and learn until you achieve mastery of understanding what is signed. These should be fun! These exercises are due the Wednesday of each week unless otherwise noted. These are found in the Quizzes section. You are given unlimited attempts, so the focus of these exercises is on learning rather than testing. Your highest score will be the one recorded. However, late submissions or attempts will not be accepted, so start practicing early!

Assessment Quizzes

The purpose of the assessment quizzes is to allow me to assess your receptive skills (how well you understand elements of ASL).

Quizzes are available for completion from Monday to Sunday of each week and must be completed no later than Sunday at 11:59PM (Central Time).  Quizzes are videos conducted in sign language.  You will watch the video and choose the answer you think is correct. You are quizzed on what you have learned in the previous week(s). Quizzes will include phrases, words, numbers, and shapes. There is one quiz required each week. You only have one timed attempt. You are not to use your book as a reference. You are to do these on your own without assistance.

Performance Video Exams

The purpose of the performance video exams is to allow me to assess your expressive ASL skills (how well you can produce ASL).

You will complete two Performance Video Exams during the session (Week 5 and Week 8). These are videos of yourself that demonstrate the ASL skills you have learned. Detailed information used to complete each video is located in the Content area of the course. Videos must be submitted using YouTube. You are advised to complete your Book and DVD as well as watch the instructor videos prior to completing your exam. You are urged to refer to the “Video checklist” before submitting the assignment to make sure your video permissions are set correctly and your video is good quality.

The following reasons will earn you automatic points off of your video score and no instructor feedback:
  • If your video is set to PRIVATE (-10 points, I won’t be able to see it at all)
  • If there is more than one video to complete the assignment (-10 points)
  • If the video is not of good quality ( -10 points if I cannot see your signs)
  • If you forget to send the link or for any other reason I can’t view your video (-10points)

Self-Assessment of Performance Video Exams

The purpose of the self-assessment of the performance video exams is to allow you to reflect on your video and expressive ASL skills. You are not expected to sign everything perfectly; but even the best signers are able to watch, reflect, and analyze how they can sign it better next time.

You will complete a detailed self-analysis on both of your Performance Video Exams. Using the rubric provided in the Content area, you will complete a self-assessment based on the four categories within the rubric. You must provide two examples in each section from your video to justify the score given out of 100 points.

Final Exam

The purpose of the Final Exam is for me to assess your comprehensive receptive knowledge of ASL that you have learned in this class. The Final Exam is divided into three parts. The exam is video intensive! Please ensure you have a good Internet connection before beginning each portion of the exam.

The Final Exam must be completed by Saturday at 11:59PM Central Time of Week 8. The Final Exam will be a comprehensive exam of what you have learned during the session. The exam will consist of videos, much like the quizzes. Signs included but are not limited to phrases, words, numbers, shapes, and special instructions. You will watch the video and select the correct answer (or type the answer, when appropriate.)


Course Outline

Click on each week to view details about the activities scheduled for that week.

Week 1: Units 1:1-1:6, Introducing Yourself
Book and DVD
Pages v-xiv & v-22, Units 1:1-1:6. Complete the “Circle the number” and “Write the number” on page 7. Complete “Circle the letter” and “Circle the letter 2” on page 13. Complete “Circle the number” and “Write the number” on page 22.
Instructor Videos
Watch the instructor videos and the “Deaf Culture” presentation in the Content area.
Discussion
Introduce yourself, including what you hope to learn and accomplish in this course.

Then, look at the Strategies for Learning American Sign Language on pages 4 and 5 in your textbook.  Which strategy do you think will be the most important and why?
ASL Tips and Quiz
ASL isn’t just about making signs with your hands.  There are lots of other things that matter, like facial expressions, positions of the hand, and word order, all of which are a part of communicating in ASL. 

After viewing the “ASL Tips” document in the Content area, complete the “ASL Tips” quiz in the Quizzes area of the course.
Quality Videos Quiz
This practice quiz will help make sure that you are ready to create quality videos for the course and should be completed after viewing “How to Make Quality Videos.” Complete this practice quiz in the Quizzes area of the course.
Video Upload Practice
This practice will guide you through properly creating and submitting a video to the Dropbox.  Because videos are the only way you can communicate what you have learned to your instructor, it is important that the technology not get in the way.  Therefore, this practice exercise must be successfully completed prior to gaining access to any other folder located in the Dropbox area of the course. 

Complete this practice by first viewing the video titled “How to Make Quality Videos” in the Content area, then create your own video and upload it to the Dropbox according to the guidelines located in the Content area. You will receive feedback from your instructor on the quality of the video in order to make future weeks go more smoothly.
Video Submission
Submit to Dropbox. Directions for the Weekly Video Submission are located in the Content area of the course under Week 1.
Week 2: Units 1:7-Unit 1 Review: Introducing Yourself
Book and DVD
Pages 23-44, Units 1:7 – Unit 1 Review. Complete “Circle the name and cross out the name” and “Write the name” on page 24. Complete “Mini-dialogues” on page 27.
Instructor Videos
Watch the instructor videos located in the Content area.
Discussion
There are distinct differences between the terms "Deaf" and "deaf" within the Deaf community.  First, read through a few of the articles provided in the Content area. After you have a good idea of the difference between "Deaf" and "deaf," discuss how you feel about this distinction.  How does this fit in with any assumptions you had about the Deaf community?  Do you feel that these terms symbolize pride in the community or is it some type of prejudice and segregation? Respond to at least two classmates' posts.
Practice Exercises
There is 1 interactive exercise: “Same, different, which?”
Assessment Quiz
Complete in the Quizzes area. Topics: names and vocabulary.
Video Submission
Submit to Dropbox. Directions for the Weekly Video Submission are located in the Content area of the course under Week 2.
Week 3: Units 2:1-2:4: Exchanging Personal Information
Book and DVD
Pages 48-64, Units 2:1 – 2:4. Complete “Mini-dialogues 1” and “Mini-dialogues 2” on page 53. Complete “Circle the number” and “Write the number” on page 59. Fill in your language background on page 64 and practice this for your performance video exam 1.
Instructor Videos
Watch the instructor videos located in the Content area.
Discussion
Read the three "Deaf Profiles" in your book on Andrew Foster (pgs. 14-15), Regina Olson Hughes (pgs. 70-71), and Douglas Tilden (pgs. 113-114). What do you see as the most important similarities (besides being Deaf) or differences between each of these people?  Whose contributions were the most significant to the Deaf community and why? Respond to at least two classmates' posts.
Practice Exercises

There are 2 exercises.

  1. “Math problems”
  2. “Next Number”
Assessment Quiz
Complete in the Quizzes area. Topics: Colors, commands, describing people, numbers, same or different
Video Submission
Submit to Dropbox. Directions for the Weekly Video Submission are located in the Content area of the course under Week 3.
Week 4: Units 2:5-Unit 2 Review: Exchanging Personal Information
Book and DVD
Pages 65-105, Units 2:5 – Unit 2 Review. Complete “Who enjoys what?” on page 69. Complete all assignments on pages 73-74. Complete “Mini dialogue” 1-3 on pages 78-80.
Instructor Videos
Watch the instructor videos located in the Content area.
Discussion
Read through the insights on pg. 52 and 54 of your textbook. What insights about the Deaf community did you find most fascinating and why? Respond to at least two classmates' posts.
Practice Exercises

There are 2 exercises this week.

  1. “Shapes from the signer’s perspective”
  2. “Picking people by description”
Assessment Quiz
Complete in the Quizzes area. Topics: Phrases
Video Submission
Submit to Dropbox. Directions for the Weekly Video Submission are located in the Content area of the course under Week 4.
Week 5: Units 3:1-3:6: Exchanging Personal Information and Discussing Living Situations
Book and DVD
Pages 109-124, Units 3:1-3:6. Complete all “Mini-dialogues” 1-3 on pages 120-121.
Instructor Videos
Watch the instructor videos located in the Content area.
Discussion
Use this ungraded topic to discuss the performance exam and ask questions of your classmates or instructor.
Practice Exercises

There are 4 exercises this week.

  1. “Fingerspelling Part ”
  2. “Finding places on a map"
  3. “Placing objects on a grid”
  4. “Placement of objects”
Assessment Quiz
Complete in the Quizzes area. Topics: Phrases and vocabulary
Video Submission
Submit to dropbox. Directions for the Weekly Video Submission are located in the Content area of the course under Week 5.
Performance Video Exam 1
Consists of material covered in Units 1 and 2. Directions for Performance Video Exam 1 are located in the Content area of the course under Week 5.
Self-Assessment for Performance Video 1
Replace this text with your 'Section' text.
Week 6: Units 3:7-3:12: Discussing Living Situations
Book and DVD
Pages 125-145, Units 3:7-3:12. Complete “Write the number” and “How many of what?” on page 129. Complete “Mini-dialogues” 1-2 on page 133. Complete “Mini dialogues” 1-3 on pages 134-135. Complete “Activity” and “Amount of time” on page 144.
Instructor Videos
Watch the instructor videos located in the Content area.
Discussion
Read the "Cultural" features in your textbook on pages 23, 33, and 152.  Which of these customs do you feel is the most important to know and why?  How are the customs of the Deaf community different from the hearing world and why do you think those differences have developed? Respond to at least two classmates' posts.
Practice Exercises

There are 3 exercises.

  1. “Numbers 30-66”
  2. “Fingerspelling Part
  3. “Crossword puzzle”
Assessment Quiz
Complete in the Quizzes area. Topics: Sentences and vocabulary
Video Submission
Submit to dropbox. Directions for the Weekly Video Submission are located in the Content area of the course under Week 6.
Course Evaluation
Please evaluate the course. You will have an opportunity to evaluate the course near the end of the session. A link sent to your CougarMail will allow you to access the evaluation. Please note that these evaluations are provided so that I can improve the course, find out what students perceive to be its strengths and weaknesses, and in general assess the success of the course. Please do take the time to fill this out.
Week 7: Units 3:13-3:15: Discussing Living Situations
Book and DVD
Pages 146-174, Units 3:13 – 3:15.  Complete all the strategies 1-5 and “Mini-dialogues” 1-6 on page 151.
Instructor Videos
Watch the instructor videos located in the Content area.
Discussion
Read the "Cultural" features in your textbook on pages 56-57 and 150.  These two readings focus on the importance of education and living space tailored to the needs of the Deaf community.  Do you feel that the emphasis on difference and separation from the hearing community is positive or negative?  Explain your answer. Respond to at least two classmates' posts.
Assessment Quiz
Complete in the Quizzes area. Topics: Numbers, phrases, sentences, and vocabulary
Video Submission
Submit to dropbox. Directions for the Weekly Video Submission are located in the Content area of the course under Week 7.
Week 8: Review Units 1-3
Book and DVD
Review Units 1-3
Discussion
Reflect on the last 8 weeks.  Have you learned everything you hoped to?  What are the next steps in your language and culture learning journey? Respond to at least two classmates' posts.
Performance Video Exam 2
Consists of material covered in Unit 3. Directions for Performance Video Exam 2 are located in the Content area of the course under Week 8.
Self-Assessment for Performance Video 2
Directions for Self-Assessment for Performance Video 2 are located in the Content area of the course under Week 8. Submit to the dropbox.
Final Exam
Comprehensive receptive exam of all information presented in the course.


Course Policies

Student Conduct

All Columbia College students, whether enrolled in a land-based or online course, are responsible for behaving in a manner consistent with Columbia College's Student Conduct Code and Acceptable Use Policy. Students violating these policies will be referred to the office of Student Affairs and/or the office of Academic Affairs for possible disciplinary action. The Student Code of Conduct and the Computer Use Policy for students can be found in the Columbia College Student Handbook. The Handbook is available online; you can also obtain a copy by calling the Student Affairs office (Campus Life) at 573-875-7400. The teacher maintains the right to manage a positive learning environment, and all students must adhere to the conventions of online etiquette.

Plagiarism

Your grade will be based in large part on the originality of your ideas and your written presentation of these ideas. Presenting the words, ideas, or expression of another in any form as your own is plagiarism. Students who fail to properly give credit for information contained in their written work (papers, journals, exams, etc.) are violating the intellectual property rights of the original author. For proper citation of the original authors, you should reference the appropriate publication manual for your degree program or course (APA, MLA, etc.). Violations are taken seriously in higher education and may result in a failing grade on the assignment, a grade of "F" for the course, or dismissal from the College.

Collaboration conducted between students without prior permission from the instructor is considered plagiarism and will be treated as such. Spouses and roommates taking the same course should be particularly careful.

All required papers may be submitted for textual similarity review to Turnitin.com for the detection of plagiarism. All submitted papers may be included in the Turnitin.com reference database for the purpose of detecting plagiarism. This service is subject to the Terms and Conditions of Use posted on the Turnitin.com site.

Non-Discrimination

There will be no discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, ideology, political affiliation, veteran status, age, physical handicap, or marital status.

Student Accessibility Resources

Students with documented disabilities who may need academic services for this course are required to register with the office of Student Accessibility Resources. Until the student has been cleared through this office, accommodations do not have to be granted. If you are a student who has a documented disability, it is important for you to read the entire syllabus as soon as possible. The structure or the content of the course may make an accommodation not feasible. Student Accessibility Resources is located in Student Affairs in AHSC 215 and can be reached by phone at (573) 875-7626 or email at sar@ccis.edu.

Online Participation

You are expected to read the assigned texts and participate in the discussions and other course activities each week. Assignments should be posted by the due dates stated on the grading schedule in your syllabus. If an emergency arises that prevents you from participating in class, please let your instructor know as soon as possible.

Attendance Policy

Attendance for a week will be counted as having submitted any assigned activity for which points are earned. Attendance for the week is based upon the date work is submitted. A class week is defined as the period of time between Monday and Sunday (except for week 8, when the work and the course will end on Saturday at midnight.) The course and system deadlines are based on the Central Time Zone.

Cougar Email

All students are provided a CougarMail account when they enroll in classes at Columbia College. You are responsible for monitoring email from that account for important messages from the College and from your instructor. You may forward your Cougar email account to another account; however, the College cannot be held responsible for breaches in security or service interruptions with other email providers.

Students should use email for private messages to the instructor and other students. The class discussions are for public messages so the class members can each see what others have to say about any given topic and respond.

Late Assignment Policy

An online class requires regular participation and a commitment to your instructor and your classmates to regularly engage in the reading, discussion and writing assignments. Although most of the online communication for this course is asynchronous, you must be able to commit to the schedule of work for the class for the next eight weeks. You must keep up with the schedule of reading and writing to successfully complete the class.

No late discussion posts will be accepted.

No late video submissions accepted. If you submit your video and I am unable to access your video for any reason (eg private setting), it will be considered late. 

To be fair and equitable to the group you need to turn your work in on time. Time management is an essential part of the college experience.   If there are extreme unforeseen circumstances, please contact me prior to the due date. 

Course Evaluation

You will have an opportunity to evaluate the course near the end of the session. A link will be sent to your CougarMail that will allow you to access the evaluation. Be assured that the evaluations are anonymous and that your instructor will not be able to see them until after final grades are submitted.


Additional Resources

Orientation for New Students

This course is offered online, using course management software provided by Desire2Learn and Columbia College. The course user guide provides details about taking an online course at Columbia College. You may also want to visit the course demonstration to view a sample course before this one opens.

Technical Support

If you have problems accessing the course or posting your assignments, contact your instructor, the Columbia College Helpdesk, or the D2L Helpdesk for assistance. Contact information is also available within the online course environment.

Online Tutoring

Smarthinking is a free online tutoring service available to all Columbia College students. Smarthinking provides real-time online tutoring and homework help for Math, English, and Writing. Smarthinking also provides access to live tutorials in writing and math, as well as a full range of study resources, including writing manuals, sample problems, and study skills manuals. You can access the service from wherever you have a connection to the Internet. I encourage you to take advantage of this free service provided by the college.

Access Smarthinking through CougarTrack under Students -> Academics -> Academic Resources.


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