<p>The Affective Norms for English Words (ANEW; Bradley & Lang, 1999) scale is a widely used instrument for valence and arousal response in English. A person whose first language is American Sign Language (ASL) might process the English emotion words differently. We hypothesized that ASL users might provide different valence and arousal ratings for emotion words in ASL, and a separate normative database might be necessary for this population. Forty-two Deaf adult signers completed ratings for the English and ASL conditions. Results showed that the rating for the arousal were similar for both conditions. However, the valence ratings were different, which could be explained by the different word frequency among the ASL users. This raises a need to create a separate valence rating normative database in ASL.</p>
Deirdre Schlehofer, Ph.D., of the National Technical Institute for the Deaf and Gaurav Mathur, Ph.D., of Gallaudet University deserve grateful acknowledgment for their ASL linguistics consultation as well as review and comment of this manuscript. We thank Justin Perez and Davina Johnson for their assistance with developing the ASL stimuli. We also thank Mary Yu for her assistance with recruiting participants.
This work was supported by National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) of the National Institutes of Health [3R01DC014463-01A1S1] diversity supplement awarded to Poorna Kushalnagar, PhD to support Sheila Bruce. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.