To quote from members' comments page: "The ASL Fingerspelling site offers a number of tools for novices and experts to help them become proficient at fingerspelling. For novices, there is a standard dictionary to learn the basic fingershapes. You can also see what a word looks like with the fingerspelling converter and practice your receptive skills with an interactive quiz. A stand-alone Macintosh program which gives you all of the features of the web site, with the addition of a speed control for various skill levels, can be down-loaded from this site."
Users can learn the ASL alphabet, practice spelling in ASL (expressive language), and use a quiz to help assess their receptive ASL skills.
Target Student Population:
Anyone who wants or needs to understand and use ASL fingerspelling will find this site useful. Instructors will appreciate this site for the interactive ability that allows users to independently work on their ASL fingerspelling skills.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
No prior knowledge of ASL is required. The website is targeting beginning level students who need or want to learn or practice ASL fingerspelling skills.
Type of Material:
The site provides tools for students to become proficient at fingerspelling. Faculty can use this site to introduce fingerspelling, have students learn the alphabet, and encourage students to practice their receptive and expressive fingerspelling skills.
Macintosh users can download the stand-alone program.
Evaluation and Observation
Given that understanding ASL is core knowledge for many teachers who work with students who are deaf or hard of hearing, this is an excellent reference site. It is easy to use and interactive for the beginning learner. Because many of today's classrooms are inclusive in nature, this skill would help both general and special education teachers communicate with hearing impaired students or those with other disabilities who use ASL to communicate. The site enables users to practice receptive (in which the user types in the word that the website spells using ASL in a ?quiz? format) and expressive (in which the user types in a word and then practices using ASL to sign along with the simulation) fingerspelling skills. The ASL alphabet images are clear, even for those signs which require movement.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
This site could be used to instruct or reinforce beginning ASL fingerspelling. Faculty could use it as an introduction to the ASL fingerspelling alphabet, without having to spend time in class teaching the alphabet. In addition, instructors could assign, as homework, spelling particular words given in class. The ?quiz? allows students to work on receptive language skills, which could be reinforced in class as well.
One suggestion for enhancing this site would be to add a method by which faculty could submit their own words for students to practice, or a way by which they could create their own fingerspelling ?quiz? and get the scores of students as they take the quiz.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
Links within the site all work smoothly. The user can maneuver within the site without getting lost,
as there are only 3 basic links. It is engaging, appealing, interactive, and has high design quality, though simple in concept.