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Deaf student invents new scientific sign language terms

Shared by Ana Duarte on 2019-10-23 10:20

About the solution

Some scientific words, like “deoxyribonucleotide”, are very difficult to spell in sign language. It was already tough for Liam to keep up with all the college workload, let alone to spell these scientific words.

Although there are some British Sign Language (BSL) translations for scientific vocabulary words, it’s very limited for college-level communication. As this was making Liam more and more frustrated.

“Watching the interpreters for a one-hour lecture is very tiring. There are a lot of new words and scientific words are often very long, like ‘deoxyribonucleotide’ and ‘deoxyribonucleoside’. Sometimes the interpreter would be fingerspelling for ages and I was having to watch it. We would make up new signs which meant it was easier next time, but it also meant I had to learn new signs which was very tiring”, the student explained.

That led Liam to create over 100 new signs (up to July 2019) for scientific words that have been officially recognised in formal BSL.

Adapted from: https://bit.ly/2ZemoMM

This solution shall not include mention to the use of drugs, chemicals or biologicals (including food); invasive devices; offensive, commercial or inherently dangerous content. This solution was not medically validated. Proceed with caution! If you have any doubts, please consult with a health professional.

About the author

Liam Mcmulkin, from the UK, was born deaf. Because he pursued higher education, he felt the need to invent new sign language terms for scientific words.

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