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There are courses, professional development and workshops out there to make you a fantastic NZSL teacher. The more you learn, the more awesome you will be at teaching.

Highly recommended qualification Certificate in Deaf Studies: Teaching New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) is the country’s only course for sign language teachers and is run by Victoria University of Wellington. This course is offered part time every two years. All interested Deaf fluent signers wanting to teach NZSL are strongly encouraged to do this course. For more information, visit Victoria University website.
Further qualifications Interested in studying more? You will need further qualifications if you want to teach NZSL in schools or at a tertiary institution. Tertiary institutions offer a range of courses in second language teaching to adults and there are teaching degrees. Some examples of qualifications include: Certificate in Language Teaching to Adults Graduate Diploma in Language Teaching Postgraduate Diploma in Second Language Teaching BA in Second Language Education / Teaching MA in Applied Linguistics / Language Studies PhD.
Professional development
Workshops NZSLTA offers training workshops from time to time. If there isn't a workshop in your area, you could consider travelling to another area to do the workshop. These workshops don't happen often, so keep your eyes peeled open for dates and grab the opportunity to attend. Visit Upcoming Trainings for updates.
National conferences NZSLTA organises a national conference on NZSL teaching every two years and these are not to be missed! NZSLTA members receive a discount. These conferences are a wonderful opportunity for you to network and catch up with others involved in sign language teaching and learning. You get to share ideas and be inspired to do new things in your teaching. There's the infamous NZSL Storyfest (NZSLTA's biannual National Storytelling Competition), held on the same weekend.
ACE (Adult Community Education) ACE offers courses for tutors or potential tutors wanting to teach to adults. This basic course usually covers how adults learn, teaching methods, learning styles, learning outcomes, course planning etc. This course is recognised for pay purposes (so you can be paid more) by the Ministry of Education. Check with your local Community Education Centre to see if they offer this course.
International The American Sign Language Teachers Association organises conferences every two years. For more info, go to website.


Yes, all courses and professional development cost money. Remember, learning makes you a better NZSL teacher. Invest money in your learning and you will be rewarded with NZSL teaching jobs, career opportunities and happy students. There are some scholarships you can apply for to help fund your study. For more information on scholarships available for the Deaf community, visit Deaf Aotearoa website.

Sharing Experiences

Watch these videos of NZSL teachers.  They'll tell you how much they benefited from training.

Last updated: 18/9/2018