The Team

Kearsy Cormier

Kearsy is a hearing sign language researcher from Texas, USA. From 2002 to 2005, she worked as a lecturer in sign language linguistics at the Centre for Deaf Studies at the University of Bristol. From 2006 to 2016, she worked at DCAL at University College London as a Senior Researcher. She was director of the BSL Corpus Project in 2011, and was Principal Investigator on the Directional Verbs Project (2012-2014), and the Digging into Signs Project (2014-2015), and Language Attitudes Project (2017-2019). She is now Reader in Sign Language Linguistics at DCAL UCL Linguistics and Principal Investigator on the BSL Syntax Project (2016-2020) and the Enactment Project (2019-2021), and Co-Investigator on ExTOL (2019-2023). For more information about Kearsy, visit her personal website. Email: k.cormier at

Adam Schembri

Adam is a hearing sign language researcher originally from Sydney, Australia. Over the last two decades, Adam has worked as an English teacher, an Australian Sign Language (Auslan)/English interpreter, a researcher and lecturer. During 2000-2002, he was a lecturer in sign language linguistics at the Centre for Deaf Studies at the University of Bristol. He then moved back Australia to work on projects on Auslan, before returning to the UK in 2006 to work at DCAL at University College London until 2010. He was Principal Investigator on the original BSL Corpus Project from 2008 to 2010 and was Co-Investigator on the Directional Verbs Project (2012-2014). He is now a lecturer at the University of Birmingham and is a Co-investigator on the BSL Syntax Project (2016-2019). For more information about Adam, visit his page. Email: a.schembri at

Jordan Fenlon

Jordan is a Deaf sign language linguist from Britain. From 2009 to June 2014, he was involved in the development of the BSL Corpus and BSL SignBank as a postdoctoral researcher. He was also a Fulbright Scholar in the Linguistics Department at Gallaudet University (2011-12), a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow within the Department of Linguistics at the University of Chicago (2014-16), and an Assistant Professor in British Sign Language at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh (2016-2019). He was a Co-Investigator on the Language Attitudes Project (2017-2019) and is a Co-Investigator on the BSL Syntax Project (2016-20). Currently he is a Research Officer at the National Deaf Children’s Society and also holds an honorary position at UCL. Email: j.fenlon at

Gabrielle Hodge

Gabrielle is a Deaf linguist from Australia. She earned her PhD from Macquarie University in 2014, supervised by Prof. Trevor Johnston (pioneer of signed language corpus linguistics). Her doctoral research used the Auslan Corpus to investigate how to identify and describe clause structure in the signed languages of deaf communities. Most recently, Gabrielle was involved in the development of the bilingual, multimodal Auslan and Australian English archive and corpus at La Trobe University. She is currently Research Associate on the BSL Syntax Project (2017 – 2020) and CI on the BSL Enactment Project (2019 – 2020).

Neil Fox

Neil is a Deaf, native BSL signer, originally from the West Midlands in UK. He worked as a research assistant at UCL starting in 2008, working on psycholinguistics with Prof. Gabriella Vigliocco and Dr. David Vinson, and completed an MRes in Speech, Language and Cognition in 2010. Neil has been working as a research assistant on the ExTOL (End to End Translation of British Sign Language) project since January 2019.

Sannah Gulamani

Sannah is Deaf from a family that has embedded the use of sign language throughout her childhood; having a mother who is a qualified interpreter, IV (Internal Verifier) and an EV (External Verifier), a sister who is Deaf and a step-father who works in the academic field of sign theatre. She was previously an intern at DCAL since April 2013, working alongside Dr Kearsy Cormier and Dr Jordan Fenlon on the BSL Corpus Project and helped support the growth of BSL SignBank. She worked as Research Assistant on the Digging into Signs Project (2014-2015), BSL SignBank (2015-2016), a Project Administrator on the BSL Syntax Project (2016-2020) and is now a Research Assistant on the Enactment project (2019-2020). She has also contributed to the Language Attitudes Project (2017-2019) completing an MA from Birkbeck University looking at attitudes in the British Deaf Community toward hearing signers of BSL. For more information about Sannah, visit the DCAL website. Email: s.gulamani at

Heidi Proctor

Heidi is a hearing PhD student from the UK. In 2016 she completed an MSc in Linguistics specialising in Sign Language Studies at University College London. She is currently studying for a PhD at the same institution; her topic is the investigation of the syntax of the noun phrase in British Sign Language and the BSL Corpus forms a key resource for this. She is supervised by Dr Kearsy Cormier and Professor Ad Neeleman.

Matt Brown

Matt is a hearing PhD student, based at DCAL and UCL’s Department of Linguistics. He previously qualified as a BSL/English interpreter at the University of Leeds (2012) and completed an MSc Language Sciences degree at UCL (2015). In 2018, he began a PhD study on pragmatic effects in British Sign Language, funded by the London Arts & Humanities Partnership. He is supervised by Dr Kearsy Cormier and Dr Richard Breheny. For more information about Matt’s work, visit his ResearchGate page.

  • Ramas Rentelis – Research assistant, BSL Corpus Project
  • Sally Reynolds – Research associate, BSL Corpus Project
  • Rosemary Stamp – PhD student, BSL Corpus Project
  • Maxwell Barber – Research Assistant on BSL Syntax Project
  • Janet Beck – Belfast translator
  • Roger Beeson – Multi-region translator
  • Jeff Brattan-Wilson – Cardiff fieldworker and translation consultant
  • Mischa Cooke – Greater London fieldworker
  • Linda Day – Deaf Advisory Group member
  • Carolyn Denmark – Bristol fieldworker and translation consultant
  • Clark Denmark – Deaf Advisory Group member
  • Margaret Deuchar (Bangor University) Co-investigator
  • Jen Dodds – Multi-region translator
  • Helen Dunipace – Glasgow translator
  • Frances Elton (University College London) Co-investigator
  • Helen Foulkes – Deaf Advisory Group member
  • Marie Franklin – Belfast consultant
  • Avril Hepner – Greater Glasgow fieldworker and translation consultant
  • Tom Johnston – Birmingham translation consultant and data collection assistant
  • Sarah Lawrence – Cardiff fieldworker
  • Sue Lee – Newcastle translator
  • Elizabeth Manrique – Research Fellow, Achieving Mutual Understanding in Signed and Spoken Conversation (BSL, Argentinian Sign Language, Argentinian Spanish)
  • Katie Mason – Research assistant
  • Dawn Marshall – Newcastle fieldworker and translation consultant
  • Evelyn McFarland – Belfast fieldworker
  • Cathryn McShane – Cardiff translator
  • Francis Murphy – Deaf Advisory Group member
  • Melinda Napier – Greater London fieldworker, translation consultant & Deaf Advisory Group member
  • Delroy Nelson – Technician
  • Mark Nelson – Greater London fieldworker
  • Dónall Ó Baoill (Queens University Belfast) Co-investigator
  • Rosemary Oram – Manchester translation consultant
  • Tessa Padden – Deaf Advisory Group member
  • Jacqueline Parker – Greater Manchester fieldworker
  • Kyra Pollitt – Bristol translator (and lead translator for the 2008-2011 Translation team)
  • Gary Quinn – Deaf Advisory Group member
  • Elvire Roberts – Birmingham translator
  • Sherratt Rowan – Multi-region translator
  • Kate Rowley – Deaf Advisory Group member, Research Associate on Language Attitudes Project
  • Mark Schofield – Muti-region translator
  • Robert Skinner – London translator
  • Gemma Smith – Bristol data collection assistant
  • Sandra Smith – Research assistant
  • Rachel Sutton-Spence (University of Bristol) – Co-investigator
  • Graham H. Turner (Heriot-Watt University) – Co-investigator
  • Alan Wendt (University College London) – Research Assistant on BSL Directional Verbs Project
  • Jenny Wilkins (née Beech) – Birmingham/West Midlands fieldworker
  • Bencie Woll (University College London) – Co-investigator
  • Ramon Woolfe – Multi-region translator