The British Sign Language (BSL) norms for age of acquisition, familiarity, and iconicity

Abstract

Research on signed languages offers the opportunity to address many important questions about language that it may not be possible to address via studies of spoken languages alone. Many such studies, however, are inherently limited, because there exist hardly any norms for lexical variables that have appeared to play important roles in spoken language processing. Here, we present a set of norms for age of acquisition, familiarity, and iconicity for 300 British Sign Language (BSL) signs, as rated by deaf signers, in the hope that they may prove useful to other researchers studying BSL and other signed languages. These norms may be downloaded from www.psychonomic.org/archive.

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Vinson, D.P., Cormier, K., Denmark, T. et al. The British Sign Language (BSL) norms for age of acquisition, familiarity, and iconicity. Behavior Research Methods 40, 1079–1087 (2008). https://doi.org/10.3758/BRM.40.4.1079

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Keywords

  • Sign Language
  • American Sign Language
  • Familiarity Rating
  • Classifier Construction
  • Signed Language