Biomechanical comparison of American Sign Language interpretation and conversation

Año: 2013
Editorial: Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting, Vol. 57, Nº 1 (2013) pp. 384-388
Tipo de código: DOI
Código: 10.1177/154193121357
Soporte: Digital


Traducción e Interpretación


Sign language interpreting is an occupation that requires a combination of high physical and cognitive demands. Professional sign language interpreters frequently suffer from work-related musculoskeletal disorders, but the problem does not seem to be as widespread for Deaf people who, similar to interpreters, frequently use a signed language. This study compares the biomechanics of American Sign Language (ASL) interpreting with the biomechanics of ASL used in casual conversation between professional interpreters and Deaf students. Results indicate that interpreters use, on average, 22% larger wrist deviations and 7% higher levels of wrist velocity when they interpret, compared to when they use ASL in conversation. During conversation, no significant differences in wrist kinematics were observed between the Deaf students and interpreters who participated in the conversation. However, the Deaf students tended to sign with larger wrist deviation than the interpreters.