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Auslan Video: Online Learning - Intro to Auslan

00:07 Auslan, Australian Sign Language, was first coined by linguist Trevor Johnston

00:15 after lengthy consultation with the deaf community.

00:20 Although the name came into being in 1989, the language itself has been around for many years.

00:27 Originating from British Sign Language and Irish Sign Language has taught in the first Deaf schools

00:32 the language has developed over time through use in the community.

00:37 School, family and social events, places of employment, religious settings

00:43 have all influenced Auslan over the years.

00:48 Auslan is not a made up language but has naturally evolved over time as all languages do.

00:55 Another aspect of Auslan in common with other language

00:59 is the existence of variation within the language.

01:02 These variations may be the result of the signers age, gender,

01:07 education, social network, religious affiliation and socioeconomic status.

01:17 There is also a north and south dialect

01:19 which provides some variation in the vocabulary for such things as colours and numbers.

01:26 The sign for 'Afternoon' is signed differently in Victoria, Queensland, New South Wales and Tasmania.

01:40 Part of the reason for variation within the language is Irish Sign Language

01:44 being taught in early Catholic schools

01:46 by comparison to British Sign Language being taught in other schools.

01:51 Auslan has also been influenced by Deaf people who have been exposed to other sign languages

01:56 through travel and even written language.

02:00 The videos in this section include both left and right handed signers,

02:05 female and male, northern and southern dialect

02:10 as well as variation from other influences throughout their lives,

02:14 whether they grew up in a deaf family, had a deaf sibling or were exposed to Auslan later in life.

02:21 There are many factors that can influence language

02:23 including if the person is bilingual with a strong grasp of English.