Dawn Duffin


One of the greatest barriers to the deaf student's continuing and further education is the accessing of course texts and research papers. A native ISL user will not necessarily have acquired fluency in accessing written information in English during the course of his or her previous educational experience. At university the deaf student cannot hope that more than a percentage of course materials will be translated into ISL onto video tape and so often loses insight into the chosen course normally gained through the range of reading of text required by third level study if her or she lacks skill in accessing written English. My research is a response to this need for deaf students to be able to access academic text and takes a ‘meta-linguistic’ approach to reconciling the grammatical differences between English and ISL. I am developing a curriculum that ‘bridges’ the two languages by deconstructing the grammars of both under a Chomskian model of universal grammar. This paper gives examples of possible solutions to aid reconciliation of the grammatical differences of these languages from my prototype curriculum. The course components are presented as a series of easily learned tools, yet are underpinned by contemporary linguistic theory.