Asking a yes/no question in ASL
A yes-no question is usually accompanied with the upward brows, widened eyes and forward head. Sometimes, holding the last word at the end of sentence also anticipates a response.
Practice non-manual grammar for yes/no questions: raise brows and lean your head forward.
Gloss: you married?
English translation: Are you married?
A wh-question is referred to when, what, why, who, how, and where. Below is the indicators of the wh-questions:
- eyebrows downward
- head slightly forward (sometimes upward)
- slightly hold the last signed word
English translation: What is your name?
ASL GLOSS: you name what?
The down eyebrows and slightly leaning-foward shoulders indiciate the wh-question.
Gloss: how you come-to class?
Translation: How did you come to class?
A rhetorical question is more of a statement. It is not a true question; it is a way of pulling a listener's attention by asking a question and then answering. The signer does not expect the listener to reply.
The attention-catching rhetorical statements are usually accompanied with the upward brows and up-tilted head.
The rhetorical question words often occur in the middle of the sentences. The common rhetorical question signs are: why, reason, how, what, and where.