Talking through touch: adapting sign languages for use by Deafblind people

Project: Research

Project Details

Project Description

People who are both Deaf and blind are at high risk of social isolation and often have only a limited number of
people with whom they can communicate fluently. Those who were born deaf and lose vision as adults often use
a tactile form of sign language, but how visual sign languages are modified for tactile delivery is poorly
understood. Drawing on a corpus of conversational data from experienced tactile signers, the project will use
conversation analysis to document and describe Tactile Australian Sign Language. This analysis aims to inform
interpreter/ case worker training for working with Deafblind clients as well as making a significant contribution to
our understanding of touch as a previously underexplored language modality.
Effective start/end date28/01/1631/12/20


  • Australian Research Council (ARC): A$220,000.00
  • Monash University
  • National Institute of Informatics
  • Victoria University of Wellington