iBSL Entry Level Award in British Sign Language

This course follows the qualification specification laid down by iBSL

Qualification Aim

This qualification aims to introduce learners to simple and basic skills in British Sign Language (BSL) to enable them to communicate with Deaf people on everyday topics in accordance with the National Language Standards at Entry Level.

Qualification Objectives

At the end of the qualification, learners will be able to:

  • Understand simple, basic information presented to them in BSL;
  • Develop strategies to acquire simple, basic BSL information of a personal, social and work-related nature;
  • Partake in simple conversation with Deaf people, whether in social situations or work-related.

These objectives relate to the National Language Standards at Entry Level

Qualification Structure

The qualification is divided into three units, each of which can be achieved separately. However, all three units must be awarded a pass for the full Entry Level Award in British Sign Language, the units are as follows:

Unit Code Unit Title Unit Description
IBSLEB1 Understand Basic Information in British Sign Language For more details of each module’s contents, please download full specification.
IBSLEB2 Develop strategies to acquire simple and basic British Sign Language skills
IBSLEB3 Take part in and follow simple conversations in British Sign Language


Length of Course

The course will consist of 60 hours in total; 30 hours of guided learning, 25 hours of directed learning and 5 hours of dedicated assessment.

The total value of credits available for this qualification is SIX (two credits per unit).

Unit Code Guided Learning Hours (GLH) Additional Study Hours Total Learning Time Credit Value
IBSLEB1 20 0 20


IBSLEB2 20 0 20


IBSLEB3 20 0 20


TOTAL 60 0 60 2


Topics & Content

The following areas will be covered:

  • Common courtesies
  • Personal information
  • Work, school or college
  • Using numbers
  • Weather

Target Group

No previous experience of British Sign Language is required for entry into this course.

The Entry Level Award in BSL is suitable for those who:

  • wish to acquire basic British Sign Language skills for the purpose of holding simple communication with Deaf people, including by family, friends and colleagues;
  • need to acquire BSL skills as part of a programme of study or professional development;
  • are studying for personal development with a view to future employment.


Unit Code Assessment Method Marked By
IBSLEB1 Receptive test (Approx 15 mins / 12 questions), multiple-choice, via video clip(s)
The pass mark for the assessment is 67%.
IBSLEB2 Reflective learning log covering learner’s experiences, feelings and reflections (1-2 A4 pages) iBSL
IBSLEB3 Conversation with tutor covering a minimum of 10 phrases (3-5 mins). iBSL



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