Course curriculum

  • 1

    New Chapter

    • PowerPoint slides

    • Identifying Phonological Processes in American Sign Language

    • Quiz

    • Evaluation

    • Continuing Education Credits

Course info

Course Description: This presentation will involve a review of key concepts in sign language phonology including: how sign languages have phonology, the formational parameters from which signs are built, the types of segments which make up signs, and syllable structure. Next, we’ll move into listing and describing various phonological processes in American Sign Language. We’ll also discuss processes which are more developmental in nature and likely seen only in young children, as well as processes that seem to be related to learning a manual language (L1 or L2) regardless of age. Portions of the presentation will be interactive.



10 minutes: Fundaments of sign language phonology 

10 minutes: Formational parameters (phonemes)

10 minutes: Segment types

15 minutes: Syllable types

15 minutes: Phonological processes


Learner Outcomes:

Participants will be able to:

  1. List ASL formational parameters and phonological processes

  2. Identify the two types of segments in signs and signs of various syllable structures

  3. Compare and contrast developmental phonological processes and modality phonological processes

  4. Use new information to identify various phonological processes from sample signs


Leah Geer

Dr. Leah Geer is a professor of American Sign Language and Deaf Studies at California State University, Sacramento. She received her PhD in Linguistics from the University of Texas at Austin and her Master's in Linguistics from Gallaudet University. Her current interests are in adult acquisition of phonetics and phonology in ASL.

Speaker disclosures

Financial disclosure: Leah receives a salary from California State University, Sacramento, is a co-author/creator of ASL at Home, and receives royalties for this course.

Nonfinancial disclosure: Leah is a member of the Linguistics Society of America, California Hands & Voices, California Educators of the Deaf, and Sacramento Valley Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf.

Continuing Education

This course is offered for 0.10 ASHA CEUs.