News

1st December 2016 – public awareness poster released

We’d like to draw attention to a public-awareness poster (in Polish) presenting basic information about Polish Sign Language (PJM), entitled “Migajmy razem!” (Let’s sign together). It was created through the efforts of the Polish Sign Language Council, whose members for the past four years (the first time of the council) have included Joanna Łacheta and Paweł Rutkowski from the Section for Sign Linguistics. The content was developed by members of the Council, and the graphic design was handled by Edyta Ołdak. The poster can be distributed without restriction, serving as a source of basic information (in Polish) about Deaf individuals and about Polish Sign Language (PJM).

1st December 2016 – Polish Sign Language Council (RPJM) term ends

The Polish Sign Language Council (RPJM) today marks the end of its first four-year term. At its last gathering on 31 August, it adopted a report on its activities in its first term, which is available for download (in Polish, in the Polish version of the post) – including all the resolutions the council passed over the entire four-year period.

29th November 2016 r. – Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science

A new article by Dr. Paweł Rutkowski about sign languages has been printed in a book published by Springer on evolutionary psychological science.

Paweł Rutkowski (2016), Sign language, in: Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science, eds. Todd K. Shackelford, Viviana A. Weekes-Shackelford, New York: Springer International Publishing (online: DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-16999-6_3323-1).

23th November 2016 – medals for UW's 200th anniversary

On 23 November, a gala event was held to mark the University of Warsaw's 200-year anniversary, at which "Medals for the 200th Anniversary of the University of Warsaw" were ceremoniously awarded. We take great pleasure in the fact that one of the medal-winners was Professor Marek Świdziński, without whose invaluable, pioneering efforts through the 1990s today's research on PJM and even the Section for Sign Linguistics itself would not exist. We were thrilled to see such esteemed recognition of Prof. Świdziński's years of hard work. Moreover, we are pleased to report that the head of the Section for Sign Linguistics, Dr. Paweł Rutkowski, also received a medal.
Here's hoping that this marks the beginning of another 200 years of sign language research at the University of Warsaw!

23th November 2016 – meeting with Professor Trevor Johnston

Members of our team are now meeting with Prof. Trevor Johnston on virtually a daily basis, discussing and comparing the annotation methods implemented in the PJM and Auslan corpora, seeking to develop the best solutions for annotating the PJM corpus. Recent meetings have involved the evaluation of elicitation sentences, the problem of dividing up the linguistic material in a corpus into "clause-like units", and the classification of indicative signs.
We'd like to thank Professor Johnston for much inspiration and a lot of valuable pointers that will definitely help us improve what we do.

23th November 2016 – lecture by Professor Trevor Johnston

We are grateful to Prof. Johnston for giving a very interesting lecture on "The uses and limitations of sign language corpora".

17th November 2016 – invitation to a lecture by Professor Trevor Johnston

On Wednesday 23 November, at 11:30 a.m., Prof. Trevor Johnston (Sydney, Australia) will deliver a lecture on "The uses and limitations of sign language corpora". The lecture will be held in room 207 (second floor) of the Old Library building (central campus of the University of Warsaw, at the address of Krakowskie Przedmieście 26/28).

17th November 2016 – "Bilingual Child Migrants in a Multilingual Europe" conference

We are pleased to report that on 16 November, at the conference entitled "Bilingual Child Migrants in a Multilingual Europe: COST New Speakers Workshop" organized at the University of Warsaw, Magda Schromová from the Section for Sign Linguistics and Justyna Kotowicz presented a joint poster on the "Relationship between executive function and sign language skills in school-aged deaf children". Reporting their findings from studying children using Polish Sign Language (PJM), the poster enjoyed considerable interest. The authors were invited by Asst. Prof. Agnieszka Otwinowska-Kasztelanic to present their findings at the University of Warsaw's Institute of English Studies.
Congratulations!

14th November 2016 – Professor Trevor Johnston begins visit to Warsaw

We would like to extend a big welcome to Prof. Trevor Johnston, now in Warsaw!

This marks the beginning of another research visit to our University by one of the leading specialists in sign language research. The visit is made possible by the grant "Multilevel linguistic annotation of the Polish Sign Language Corpus", awarded to Dr. Rutkowski by the Polish National Program for the Development of the Humanities. Prof. Johnston will stay for two weeks, participating in a range of meetings with members of our Section for Sign Linguistics and giving two lectures on particular issues in his research. One of them will be open to all interested listeners (detailed information will be released soon).
Here you can have a look at some photos from today's meeting.
Prof. Johnston will be paying his next visit to Warsaw in January!

28th October 2016 – VCC conference

At the "International Symposium on Verbs, Clauses and Constructions" held at the University of La Rioja on 26-28 October, our Section for Sign Linguistics was represented by Joanna Filipczak and Monika Krawczyk. They delivered a paper entitled "How ‘THIS’ is used? A preliminary corpus-based study of pointing signs in PJM", in Polish Sign Language (PJM) with simultaneous translation into English.
Here you can have a look at some photos from Spain.

11th October 2016 – new Deaf-related Polish words recognized

We are pleased to report that the "Language Observatory" at the University of Warsaw, which keeps track of the latest newcomers to the Polish lexicon, has recently cataloged the terms audyzm ("audism"), CODA, KODA, and kodak (for "child of deaf adult") and Głuchy (the capitalized form of the adjective "Deaf"). That shows that these words have now carved out a certain place for themselves in the Polish language, presumably as a reflection of growing public awareness of the underlying issues.
The definitions (in Polish) are available below.

7th October 2016 – inaugural lecture by Dr. Rutkowski

The inaugural lecture given to launch the 2016/2017 academic year at the University of Warsaw, by Dr. Paweł Rutkowski, is now available online here. The ceremony and lecture, which was streamed live and can now be viewed on the University’s YouTube channel, was interpreted live into PJM.

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5th October 2016 – conference on "Effective Inclusive Education"

On 7 October 2016, the Polish Ministry of National Education will hold an international conference on “Effective Inclusive Education” involving experts from the European Agency for Special Needs and Inclusive Education. The objective of the conference was to facilitate the exchanging of experience and the promotion of good practices helping to boost the effectiveness of inclusive education for all students – both those with special education needs, and their fully-abled peers. The conference was transmitted online, together with live interpretation into PJM.

4th October 2016 – new academic year inaugurated

The 2016/2017 academic year has now been inaugurated by His Magnificence, the Rector Marcin Pałys. So inspired, we have now set about our research work with renewed energy in this new academic year. Some photos from the event are available in the Polish version of the post.

30th September 2016 – new corpus logo

To mark the occasion of our 50th studio recording session of material for the PJM corpus, we are reactivating its Facebook page! To get the ball rolling, we are unveiling the new logo of the corpus. If you like it, we'd appreciate it if you could take a moment to give it a “thumbs-up”!

26th September 2016 – COST report

We are proud to learn that the latest COST report (European Cooperation in Science & Technology) entitled "Investing in Europe's diversity" cited the SignGram action, which the Section for Sign Linguistics participated in, as an example of a very successful research project.

24th September 2016 – 70th anniversary of the Polish Association of the Deaf

The Section for Sign Linguistics has received a commemorative statuette in connection with the 70th anniversary of the Polish Association of the Deaf (PZG) and 140th anniversary of the Deaf Movement in Poland. Grateful for this token of appreciation for our research work, we congratulate the Association on this momentous anniversary!

24th September 2016 – International Day of the Deaf

Today is International Day of the Deaf! To mark the occasion, the Polish Association of the Deaf prepared the huge campaign entitled “Poland is All Ears” [Polska zamienia się w słuch], an initiative which we fully support. Have a look at the television programs and online ads prepared especially for the event.

23th September 2016 – check out the "Widzi-mi-się" project

We would like to encourage everyone interested to take part in the “Widzi-mi-się: Fotografia dla dzieci” project involving photography for children. The events making up the project will be translated into PJM.

21th September 2016 – inauguration of the new academic year

We take pride in reporting that this year’s inaugural lecture kicking off the new academic year at the University of Warsaw will be delivered by none other than our section leader, Dr. Paweł Rutkowski! We congratulate Paweł on receiving the honor. The lecture, entitled “The Right to Language”, will take place on 30 September at the Auditorium Maximum and will be translated into PJM!

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