British Sign Language (or BSL) is used by over 150,000 thousand people in the UK, of whom some 87,000 are deaf. However, there are only around 1,000 registered sign language interpreters in this country.
Whether you’re looking for a change of career, would like to learn a new skill, or have a friend who uses BSL and you’re keen to learn, there are many online courses you can explore.
Did you know there are also various apps to help you get started too? We found this useful list on the National Deaf Children’s Society’s website.
- Sign BSL: The British Sign Language dictionary where you can learn the basics from a collection of videos. Also available for free at www.signbsl.com.
- BSL Hands (One and Two): This is a project by Deaf Active North West which aims to teach primary school children the basics of sign language. The instruction videos have related graphics and an English voiceover.
- ITV Signed Stories: Download signed versions of popular children’s songs and books. It will also add signs from the books that you’ve bought into your personalised BSL dictionary.
- BSL Zone: Watch TV programmes for free that are presented in BSL with English subtitles and often with English voiceovers
- Spread the Sign: A dictionary app that you can also find online at www.spreadthesign.com. If you can’t find a sign on the Sign BSL app then this is a good backup. You can even look up signs in different country’s sign languages too.