Adapting Tests of Sign Language Assessment for Other Sign Languages—A Review of Linguistic, Cultural, and Psychometric Problems

Haug, T. & Mann, W. (2008). Adapting Tests of Sign Language Assessment for Other Sign Languages—A Review of Linguistic, Cultural, and Psychometric Problems. The Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 13(1), pp. 138-147. doi: 10.1093/deafed/enm027

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Abstract

Given the current lack of appropriate assessment tools for measuring deaf children's sign language skills, many test developers have used existing tests of other sign languages as templates to measure the sign language used by deaf people in their country. This article discusses factors that may influence the adaptation of assessment tests from one natural sign language to another. Two tests which have been adapted for several other sign languages are focused upon: the Test for American Sign Language and the British Sign Language Receptive Skills Test. A brief description is given of each test as well as insights from ongoing adaptations of these tests for other sign languages. The problems reported in these adaptations were found to be grounded in linguistic and cultural differences, which need to be considered for future test adaptations. Other reported shortcomings of test adaptation are related to the question of how well psychometric measures transfer from one instrument to another.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Divisions: School of Health Sciences > Department of Language & Communication Science
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/3273

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