Subject Area



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.