With SooSL, you can make several different types of dictionaries:
- A general dictionary is for everyone to use, with vocabulary that people use in ordinary conversation. General dictionaries can get very large, with several thousand different signs. If you want to gather signs for a general dictionary, you can look for signs to include in several ways:
- Look through standard lists of vocabulary in other languages, such as the Swadesh 200-word list or vocabulary that is taught in each grade in school.
- Look at dictionaries in other sign languages, either SooSL dictionaries, other web dictionaries, or printed dictionaries.
- Look through stories and other videos for new signs that people use.
- Ask people to think of signs in different meaning categories, such as food, games, work, medical, etc. There is a method called Rapid Word Collection that does this. You can use it to collect thousands of signs in just a couple weeks, with a team working together.
- A specialized dictionary is for special groups of people to use. For example:
- technical signs for fields of study, like biology, chemistry, physics, geology, sociology, linguistics, and medicine
- signs for special subjects like art, design, dance, countries, decision-making, and education
- religious or Bible signs
- a directory of people and their name signs in an organization
- Most sign language dictionaries are bilingual: they have one sign language and one written language. However:
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