CUHK Hong Kong Sign Language Browser Further EnhancedLegal Signs Module to Strengthen Deaf Services
The Centre for Sign Linguistics and Deaf Studies (CSLDS) of the Department of Linguistics and Modern Languages of The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) has further enhanced the Hong Kong Sign Language Browser (HKSL Browser) with the support of the Government Fund for Labour and Welfare Bureau to Implement Public Education Activities on Rehabilitation in 2013-2014. The enhanced version of HKSL Browser includes about 700 new lexical variants used by different deaf communities. CSLDS is also working on the glossary of legal signs for sign interpreters and the public, hoping to strengthen legal support for deaf people. The Module of Legal Signs is expected to be published between 2014 and 2015.
HKSL Browser is the first comprehensive online database of Hong Kong sign language. Since 2012-13, around 1,800 lexical signs (including lexical variants) have been featured in the browser. It is aimed at promoting Hong Kong sign language to the public and supporting sign language related activities, such as deaf education and sign interpretation.
Prof. Felix Sze, the project leader of HKSL Browser and Research Assistant Professor, Department of Linguistics and Modern Languages, CUHK said, ‘We strive to collect and record lexical signs, their lexical variants used by different deaf communities and their background information. Aside from the frequency of use by different deaf communities and age distribution of users, the origins of the lexical items are also introduced in the updated version of HKSL Browser. The background information will not only help the public know more about the deaf community but also bring great value for historical and academic studies.’
Following the Module of Legal Signs, HKSL Browser will continue to develop new modules for different professions, such as medicine, computers and technology, etc. This will promote the development of the sign language profession and enhance deaf services in Hong Kong.
The HKSL Browser: www.cslds.org/hkslbrowser
The Centre for Sign Linguistics and Deaf Studies: www.cslds.org