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Title: The role of visual-spatial skills in learning sign language
Authors: Tan, Stacy Bei Yi
Keywords: DRNTU::Humanities::Linguistics::Sign language
Issue Date: 2015
Abstract: Hearing adults acquire sign language differently from deaf and hearing children as they have not only passed the sensitive period for language learning, but are also challenged by the novel visual and spatial modalities of sign language. This research study was interested in finding out if a hearing adult's level of visual-spatial skill is related to how efficiently and proficiently sign language is acquired. 23 hearing adults were first assessed on their visual-spatial skills through the use of a mental rotation MCQ test (task 1), followed by the undergoing of a sign language learning period (task 2). Finally, to test for final sign language proficiency, the participants were asked to produce the learned signs (task 3). It was found that there was a positive correlation between the scores recorded from task 1 and task 3, which suggests that visual-spatial skill transfer does take place, and that high visual-spatial skill gives the individual an advantage in the learning of sign language as an L2. The current study also supported previous research on gender-based differences in visual-spatial skill. Lastly, the results provided insight on whether general language learning faculty or visual-spatial skill play a greater role in learning sign language.
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:HSS Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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