John D. Bonvillian

Learn More
A longitudinal study of sign language acquisition was conducted with 13 very young children (median age 10 months at outset of study) of deaf parents. The children's sign language lexicons were examined for their percentages of iconic signs at two early stages of vocabulary development. Iconic signs are those that clearly resemble the action, object, or(More)
Sign language production of 14 low-functioning students diagnosed with autistic disorder was examined. Videotapes of the students signing with their teachers were analyzed for frequency and accuracy of sign location, handshape, and movement production. The location aspect of signs was produced more accurately by the subjects than either the handshape or(More)
This study examined 40 deaf and 20 hearing students' free recall of visually presented words varied systematically with respect to signability (i.e., words that could be expressed by a single sign) and visual imagery. Half of the deaf subjects had deaf parents, while the other half had hearing parents. For deaf students, recall was better for words that had(More)
The sign language and motor development of 11 young children of deaf parents were studied across a 16-month period. The subjects showed accelerated early language development producing, on the average, their first recognizable sign at 8.5 months, their tenth sign at 13.2 months, and their first sign combination at 17.0 months. In contrast, children learning(More)
The acquisition of the movement aspect of American Sign Language signs was examined longitudinally in 9 young children of deaf parents. During monthly home visits, the parents demonstrated on videotape how their children formed the different signs in their lexicons. The parents also demonstrated how they formed or modeled these same signs. Overall, the(More)
The acquisition of the location aspect of American Sign Language signs was examined in 9 young children of deaf parents. In monthly home visits, the parents demonstrated on videotape how their children formed each newly-acquired sign in their lexicons; these videotaped records served as the basis for the present analyses. Sign locations, overall, were(More)
The purpose of the study was fourfold: (a) to document the hand preferences of nonspeaking individuals with autism as they produced signs and nonsign actions; (b) to find out if sign-language proficiency in such individuals is associated with directionality or consistency of signing hand preference; (c) to explore the link between hand preference for(More)
Hand preference for signing and for nonsign actions was examined longitudinally in 24 young children (3 deaf, 21 hearing) with deaf parents. Most of these children showed a strong preference for their right hands in their sign production. This preference emerged early in their development, was relatively consistent over time, and predicted mature hand(More)
The relationship between parental risk condition and parents' sensitivity to infants' cues was measured in one father-infant and 59 mother-infant dyads. Parents were videotaped at home, playing with their infants. Systematic differences in interactional patterns were found across six parental risk groups--neglectful, abusing, mentally retarded, low-income,(More)