[[abstract]]This purpose of this study was to explore the origins, the visual makeup, and patterns/principles of name signs of the students at Taipei School for the Hearing Impaired﹝hereinafter TSHI﹞as well as how students from different backgrounds go about designing names and how they consider the traditional way of naming. The research seeks to strike a balance between qualitative and quantitative methodologies by conducting a field research on the 339 name signs used by the 310 TSHI students enrolled between the academic years of 1999 to 2001 as the collected data was broken down quantitatively and analyzed qualitatively. In addition, a questionnaire survey was conducted in the 2001 academic year on 50 senior high school students. The paper was also completed with a literature review and findings of campus activity observation. The main findings of the paper are as follows： 1.The Hearing-Impaired Students get name signs based on their physical characteristics, real names, and gender, among other sign language principles from peers privately or publicly upon receiving education for the hearing- impaired mainly to facilitate the addressing and identifying called for on social occasions. The name signs will be used as a identifier among hearing- impaired communities and will be changed only when someone with the same name signs comes along or when the name is found to be implying vulgarity. 2.The visual makeup of a name signs consists of such components as the shape, the movement, and the location of the hand. Among the most often performed hand shapes using the fingers of the right hand are palming, straightening, fisting, curving, crossing, joining, and touching, while these shapes can be used independently or at times combined. The movement of the hand hinges on whether the performer is imitating the referee’s physical movement, physical features, shapes, or gesturing a related Chinese character, etc. As to the location of the hand, most end up in front of the head, the face and the chest. The three components shall combine to create a gesture corresponding to the human body mechanics. 3.Most of the name signs belong to the “single-gesture name” category, which is characterized by using the fingers of the right hand in a single movement. Most of them include a reference to gender. The names can be divided into single-morpheme words, derivative words, and compound words, morphologically, while any given name can be broken down to main part and affiliated part, syntactically. 4.Students from different backgrounds are found to develop both similarities and distinctions in terms of name signs. A gender-specific use of finger combinations is also spotted. 5.An understanding is attained of NSHI students’ points of views towards such subject matters or problems as name signs, inappropriate name signs, identical names, changing names, translating names, among others. Their expectations are also included. Lastly, this research will, with the above findings and research limitations in mind, offer suggestions to the parents and students of NSHI as well as future researchers.
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