ASL University

 American Sign Language: "UM"

A student writes:
Is there a sign for "um" in ASL?  It seems that when interpreting there should be some sign, or indication, or something that would communicate "he/she is not saying anything, but is saying something." Hopefully that makes sense. Do Deaf people have a comparable sign or something like "um?"


1.  The typical "um" equivalent is to use a loose hand and rotate it in the air (pivoting at the wrist) while using a facial expression that looks like you are trying to think of something.
Some people spell UMMMMMMM by doing a "U" and then sliding an "M." Thus it is somewhat of a "joke sign."

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