A Prose Recall Test Using Stories in American Sign Language

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Abstract

Objective

To develop a test of American Sign Language (ASL) prose recall, modeled after the Logical Memory subtest of the Wechsler Memory Scale.

Method

Two ASL stories were developed and presented to participants, whose verbatim recall in immediate and delayed conditions was videotaped. Three ASL-fluent raters scored the responses. Recall scores were correlated with performance IQ (PIQ) and Signed Paired Associate Test (SPAT) results.

Participants

41 ASL-fluent deaf adults.

Outcome Measures

ASL Stories Test, Wechsler Adult Intelligence Test PIQ, SPAT.

Results

Mean recall scores for the 2 stories were 58% and 66% (immediate condition, a significant difference) and 63% and 68% (delayed condition, also a significant difference), respectively. Interrater reliability coefficients ranged from .77 to .94. Immediate and delayed recall scores for the 1st story correlated with PIQ. Combined ASL story recall scores correlated with more challenging elements of the SPAT.

Conclusions

The 1st ASL story was more difficult than the 2nd. Reliability scores, correlations with PIQ and SPAT performance, and other test properties that are comparable to the Logical Memory subtest suggest the ASL Stories Test shows promise as a verbal memory research and clinical evaluation tool with deaf individuals who use ASL.

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