ASL University ►


ASL Topics:  Lexicon vs Vocabulary?



Lyn Wiley writes:

Hi Bill,
Re: the concept of 'building one's sign vocabulary.'
Do you refer to the accumulation of signs as a 'sign-vocabulary?' Or, as a 'sign-lexicon?'
Or perhaps I am ignorant to some other term that would be more correct, more suitable?
When I think of the words 'vocabulary' and 'lexicon' I think of 'spoken words' (but perhaps I'm wrong about that).
Hope you're having a good week!
Lyn

 

Lyn,
Depends on your audience eh?
The typical ASL student doesn't know the word "lexicon."
The two terms overlap quite a bit (see the dictionary entries below).
But to answer your question, a student builds up his/her signing vocabulary by studying the lexicon of ASL.
The lexicon of ASL consists of the signs, lexicalized fingerspelling, facial expressions, and loan-signs, as well as the head, shoulder, and torso movements (which have established meanings) in ASL. A student develops his ASL vocabulary by learning more and more of the ASL lexicon.
-- Bill 
(William G. Vicars, Ed.D)


VOCABULARY:
1:  A list or collection of words or of words and phrases usually alphabetically arranged and explained or defined: lexicon
2:  A sum or stock of words employed by a language, group, individual, or work or in a field of knowledge
3:  A list or collection of terms or codes available for use (as in an indexing system)
4:  A supply of expressive techniques or devices (as of an art form)

LEXICON:
1: A book containing an alphabetical arrangement of the words in a language and their definitions : dictionary
2: The vocabulary of a language, an individual speaker or group of speakers, or a subject
3: The total stock of morphemes in a language
4: Repertoire, inventory
 

 


You can learn American Sign Language (ASL) online at American Sign Language University
ASL resources by Lifeprint.com    Dr. William Vicars


Dr. Bill's new iPhone "Fingerspelling Practice" app is now available!   GET IT HERE!  


NEW!  Online "ASL Training Center!"  (Premium Subscription Version of ASLU)  ** CHECK IT OUT **


Also available: "ASLUniversity.com" (a mirror of Lifeprint.com less traffic, fast access)  ** VISIT NOW **

Want to help support Lifeprint / ASLU?  It's easy!     

back.gif (1674 bytes)