The effect of nonverbal communication training on the acquisition of sign language.
AuthorDilka, Karen Lynn.
KeywordsSign language -- Study and teaching.
Sign language acquisition.
Nonverbal communication -- Study and teaching.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe purpose of this study was to determine the effect of nonverbal communication training on the acquisition of expressive and receptive sign language skills. Thirteen skills were included. Twenty-eight participants enrolled in the Beginning Interpreter Training Program (BITP) held at the University of Arizona were selected as subjects. The subjects were randomly assigned to two groups, a control group and an experimental group. The experimental group received ten hours of nonverbal communication training in the categories of kinesics, eye movement, facial expression, proxemics, chronemics, haptics, and artifacts, concurrently with their participation in the BITP. A rating instrument was devised and administered that measured the subject's performance on thirteen expressive and receptive sign language skills. A comparison of pretest and posttest performances was made utilizing the analysis of covariance. The results of the statistical analysis indicated that the experimental group improved significantly on the skills of receptive clarity and receptive fluency. No statistically significant differences were found between the experimental group and the control group on the other eleven skills although the experimental group mean score values were consistently higher than the control group mean score values. The importance of the results for the two groups of subjects involved in this study and the field of interpreting is that nonverbal communication training appears to enhance the receptive clarity and fluency abilities of sign language interpreters. This study should serve as an impetus and a reference point for others wishing to investigate the inclusion of nonverbal communication training in sign language interpreter training programs.
Degree ProgramSpecial Education and Rehabilitation