Learning a new language is a difficult endeavor, so busting out a dictionary is usually the first thing one does during the process. It’s no different when learning American Sign Language, only instead of just text, you need videos as well. ASL Dictionary, developed by appsavers.com, can be your best friend while learning ASL. With over 4,800 signed words, it is unlikely that you’ll be lost in conversation. Words found in this iPhone app fall under categories such as time, money, dates, general numbers, etc., and include words with multiple meanings, common phrases, and even 55 idioms. Just scroll down the alphabet on the right side, or type a word into the search bar on the top to find a word. Tapping on a word will bring you to a video that will show you the correct motions.
ASL Dictionary is extremely light-weight, which is both a good and bad thing. It means that it won’t be a lagging monster to deal with, but it also means that it’ll require an Internet connection to use (3G or wireless); loading time for videos will depend on your Internet speeds. Also, an option to keep the video on-screen to repeat without tapping the word again in the dictionary would be nice. This app is also just a dictionary: there are no general lessons in facial expressions or any of the other factors that go into signing (those can be found in other apps), so this app would be of greater benefit to someone who already has some experience in signing and just wants to build their vocabulary. ASL Dictionary is currently on sale for $0.99, so grab it while you can; hopefully there will be updates in the future that will provide even more words to learn.
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