Research

The vocabulary of Auslan is still being documented and described. It is changing particularly because the language is being used in areas in which it was never used before. This is partly due to improved availability of Auslan interpreters and the development and diversification of the deaf community itself, e.g., improved educational and employment opportunities.

A recent vocabulary project (Medical Signank) enlisted the support of the deaf community and Auslan interpreters and interpreting service providers (such as the National Auslan Booking and Payment Service) to encourage feedback through Auslan Signbank on medical and health related vocabulary in Auslan. Some additional new signs were identified and added to the dictionary. In other cases, the lack of a sign for a frequently occurring concept was noted and an entry for that concept was added to Signbank. At the entry (which can be found by searching for the English word for that concept) a short video clip in Auslan explains the medical or health-related word.

A new project ("Educational Signbank") is working with Auslan educational interpreters in the state of Victoria to identify signs for English words that frequently occur when interpreting course material in Colleges for Technical and Further Education (TAFE).