American Sign Language Classes in Detroit, Michigan: A Comprehensive Guide

Updated on March 24, 2020
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MoonByTheSea is passionate about Deaf rights and American Sign Language.

Madonna University, pictured here, has a Department of Sign Language Studies offering bachelor's degrees in four specialty areas.
Madonna University, pictured here, has a Department of Sign Language Studies offering bachelor's degrees in four specialty areas. | Source

ASL options in Detroit, Michigan range from introductory ASL classes to degrees in ASL/English interpreting. If you know of other programs not listed, please let me know in the comments section at the bottom of this page.

Colleges with ASL and Interpreter Training Programs

Baker College of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills
Baker College is a private, accredited, not-for-profit college with 13 campuses throughout Michigan. The college offers a Bachelor or Associate degree in Interpreter Training (ASL); the program prepares students to take the state of Michigan interpreter certification exam.

Madonna University, Livonia
Madonna University is a private, Catholic liberal arts university located just outside Detroit. The Department of Sign Language Studies offers Bachelor degrees in four areas of study, including ASL Education, Sign Language Interpreting Studies, Deaf Community Studies, and Sign Language Studies.

Schoolcraft College, Livonia
Starting in Fall 2014, Schoolcraft College will begin offering a Sign Language Studies Dual Degree Program with Madonna University. The program allows students to earn an associate of applied science degree after approximately two years of full-time coursework that includes sign language courses, and then complete a bachelor’s degree from Madonna University seamlessly. Students interested in majoring in Sign Language Studies can being taking ASL classes as freshmen.

Oakland Community College, Bloomfield Hills
Located in Oakland County, this community college offers an Associate degree in Sign Language Interpreting. The program can be completed in 2-3 years. The Sign Language Studies program includes courses in ASL, Deaf culture, and interpreting.

Wayne County Community College offers a certificate program in ASL.
Wayne County Community College offers a certificate program in ASL. | Source

Colleges Offering ASL Certificates or Coursework

Macomb Community College, Warren
Offers four courses in American Sign Language, as well as a specialized fingerspelling class. They also offer American Deaf Culture, a course which "deals with the characteristics of sociological subculture among the hearing impaired (both deaf and hard of hearing) individuals as it relates to cultural aspects of deafness."

Wayne County Community College District, Detroit
The American Sign Language Institute offers an “American Sign Language College Certificate” consisting of 2 semesters of ASL and several courses on Deaf culture and ASL linguistics. In the first semester, students take American Sign Language I, Structure of American Sign Language, and Visual Gestural Communication. In the second semester, students take American Sign Language II, Orientation to Deafness, and Introduction to the American Deaf Culture.

Wayne State University, Detroit
The Speech-Language Pathology program offers three courses: Elementary Sign Language, Advanced Sign Language, and a course on practical use of ASL.

Community-Sponsored ASL Classes

The Holley Institute, St. John Providence
The Institute is a non-profit organization that provides services and programs for the Deaf, Deaf/Blind, and hard of hearing. It also offers at least three levels of non-accredited ASL courses to the public for a nominal fee. Classes are offered at various St. John Providence locations in metro Detroit.

Sign Language Services of Michigan, Shelby Township
This organization offers interpreting services and sign language classes. For $50, you can take a basic 6-week class in American Sign Language covering basic conversational signs, the alphabet, and numbers. For $40, they also offer a 4-week kids class, a basic sign language class focusing on fun vocabulary, the alphabet and numbers with exciting games and activities.


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    • profile image


      2 years ago


      We are curious if you can add our program to your list of ASL programs in Michigan? Henry Ford Community College offers a Deaf Studies Certificate along with ASL courses. Here is our website-

      Contact and School info is as follows;

      Henry Ford Community College

      800-585-4322-generaladmissions@hfcc.edu5101 Evergreen Rd. Dearborn, MI 48128

      Please let me know if you need any further information. We appreciate your time.

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      Hi there -

      I work at the Holley Institute, and just noted that our ASL class information has been updated/corrected as requested. Thank you SO much! We greatly appreciate it.

      Take care,

      Pamela Bright

      Administrative Assistant

    • MoonByTheSea profile imageAUTHOR


      3 years ago

      Thanks for this information! I've made the updates.

    • profile image

      Pamela Bright 

      3 years ago


      I work for the Holley Institute, which is mentioned in this article regarding low-cost ASL classes in Detroit, MI. We greatly appreciate this publicity regarding our ASL classes and have received calls from prospective students who found us thanks to this site. There are a few errors in the article, however, that we are hoping can be corrected.

      First: the fee for our ASL classes has changed from $55. We would like to get away from stating the exact cost, however, since our fee structure varies depending upon the level of instruction (advanced ASL class fee is higher than the other two level courses) and whether the student is employed at St. John Providence. To keep the article from becoming obsolete with the next change affecting tuition, we are hoping that statement can be reworded to something more general/generic, such as: "...non-accredited ASL classes to the public for a minimal fee."

      Second: our parent company changed its name and is now known simply as St. John Providence (i.e., delete the words "Health System" from the organization's name).

      Finally, regarding the list of locations, Providence Park should be deleted from the list as that's a hospital site rather than a city, like Detroit and Madison Heights. Other cities that could be added to the list include Novi, Southfield and Warren - OR, you could keep it generic by instead stating "Classes are offered at various St. John Providence locations in metro Detroit."

      Thank you,

      Pamela Bright

      Admin. Asst.

      The Holley Institute



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