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Unread 08-30-2006, 09:27 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Math in ASL

Before I run off to my calculus morning on this fine morning, I wanted to ask you a question about math signs. This is my first time I've taken math WITH a 'terp, even though in the past, I passed college-level math without the aid of one, much less a real-time captioner or a notetaker. While I am doubtful about how a 'terp can greatly facilitate my (re)learning calculus, I still want to make the best out of it.

Do you guys have signs for the following words/concepts:

equation
expression (as in a polynominal expression)
algorithm (once a 'terp signed this, it looked like a derivation from the sign for algebra, except the hands ended in flapping the Ls)
derivative
function (as in the notion of a function)
limit (as in the concept of limit of a function)

And anything else you know would come in handy too!
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Unread 08-30-2006, 09:37 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Oooh! Math!

These are the signs I've been using with my interpreters over the years.

Derivative: fingerspell "dx" really quick

Equation: sign for sentence (in the sence that an equation is a statement)

Expression: same as equation

Function: (an "F" left and right along your non-dominant forearm) If the function is expressed in terms of a variable (like f(x)), then we sign "f" and then "x" -- often the interpreter will mouth "of" between each letter.

Limit: We imported the normal sign for "limit" (as in, my career is limited because Jake has a nostril on his rostral fungus).

And for algorithm, nothing comes to mind.

What do you use for integral? We've been imitating the integrand with an "i" handshape.
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Unread 08-30-2006, 05:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Equation: sign for sentence (in the sence that an equation is a statement)
I often sign it with an initialized E.

That list of signs matches up with mine, although I know there are variations on some of them. I've used "shaky I" for integral but that may have been specific to that class. It seems like I use more nonce signs (signs that are made up and agreed upon by interpreter and client for a particular assignment but aren't necessarily standard) in math than in other classes. There's a lot of checking with the student about how they want things signed -- "variable" comes to mind.
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Unread 08-30-2006, 10:40 PM   #4 (permalink)
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May I suggest perhaps we can try video here ?
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Unread 08-31-2006, 12:15 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I dont know the signs for those, but if you need help with calculus I can help you with that I am a math major in my Bachelor of Education.
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Unread 08-31-2006, 09:28 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Oooh! Math!

What do you use for integral? We've been imitating the integrand with an "i" handshape.

Thank you! You're very helpful. Why am I not surprised to see you here?

I'd use the shaked I handshape for integral too. Just exactly like what Interpretrator said.
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Unread 08-31-2006, 09:30 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Interpretrator View Post
That list of signs matches up with mine, although I know there are variations on some of them. I've used "shaky I" for integral but that may have been specific to that class. It seems like I use more nonce signs (signs that are made up and agreed upon by interpreter and client for a particular assignment but aren't necessarily standard) in math than in other classes. There's a lot of checking with the student about how they want things signed -- "variable" comes to mind.
There seems to be a lack of standardization when it comes to academic ASL, especially in the areas of math and sciences. I've never had a 'terp in biology or physics, so I have no way of knowing how that'd work out!
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Unread 08-31-2006, 09:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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May I suggest perhaps we can try video here ?
That's a good idea! But I think some of us don't have webcams set up to make short video clips of math signs in ASL.
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Unread 08-31-2006, 09:32 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I dont know the signs for those, but if you need help with calculus I can help you with that I am a math major in my Bachelor of Education.
Cool beans! I'll have to keep your kind offer in mind. Trouble hasn't hit the roof yet.
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Unread 08-31-2006, 12:43 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by me_punctured View Post
There seems to be a lack of standardization when it comes to academic ASL, especially in the areas of math and sciences. I've never had a 'terp in biology or physics, so I have no way of knowing how that'd work out!
Yeah, and even within one school different interpreters may use different signs. I wonder why it is that these particular disciplines (math and science) have this problem. I guess it has to do with the fact that often students are required to know the English (or Latin) vocabulary itself, not just the concept as represented by a sign or series of signs. It wouldn't do for a deaf medical student not to be able to know the Latin names for parts of the anatomy, for example.

Can you take ten minutes with your interpreter and go over what signs you'd like to use?
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Unread 09-02-2006, 06:36 PM   #11 (permalink)
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American Sign Language
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Unread 09-03-2006, 01:28 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Interesting -- how would you describe this "shaked I" for integral? I'm having a little challenge picturing it.

And I see I spelled sense as sence. Here's a round of applause for blonde moments!
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Unread 09-03-2006, 03:59 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Interesting -- how would you describe this "shaked I" for integral? I'm having a little challenge picturing it.
Oh...in interpreter-land, "shaky [whatever]" just means to hold up the handshape for that letter and shake it back and forth. So in this case it would look the same as the sign INSURANCE. The sign for WHERE could be described as "shaky D" or "shaky 1" (depending on how you sign it), if that makes any sense.

I like that above website for academic signs but that model seems way too happy about the math signs. Still, those signs are definitely not standard. For "pi" I rarely fingerspell it but generally use a sign that looks like the Texas Longhorns sign upside down to represent the Greek letter. There's also a two-handed version that someone showed me but I don't remember how it's signed. I find the less fingerspelling in math, the better, since you're often dealing with variables so it can get confusing to have lots of extra letters thrown in. Luckily it's usually all written on the board too!
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