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This explanatory mixed method research study investigates instructor and student perceptions regarding the factors that enhance or inhibit the self-directedness of American Sign Language (ASL) I students enrolled in institutions of higher education. Twenty students participated in the Self-Directed Learning Readiness Scale (SDLRS), also known as the Learning Preference Assessment (LPA), developed by Lucy Guglielmino (1978). The SDLRS survey answered the first research question. We then conducted video recorded interviews with ten participants, both students and instructors. As shown in research, the interviews clarified the assessment results with personal narratives to support the development of the conclusion of the study. A total of three themes emerged from this study to answer the six research questions. The goal of this explanatory mixed method study was to gain more knowledge about what the students in the introductory ASL class perceive their self-direction to be and to identify learning strategies that work for them. Findings from this study could provide deeper understanding and a rich source of information for future ASL instructors to help reduce frustration among ASL students.