ChaLearn LAP Large Scale Signer Independent Isolated Sign Language Recognition Challenge: Design, Results and Future Research

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Sincan O. M., Jacques Junior J. C. S., Escalera S., Keles H.

IEEE/CVF Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR), ELECTR NETWORK, 19 - 25 June 2021, pp.3467-3476 identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • Doi Number: 10.1109/cvprw53098.2021.00386
  • Page Numbers: pp.3467-3476
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: No


The performances of Sign Language Recognition (SLR) systems have improved considerably in recent years. However, several open challenges still need to be solved to allow SLR to be useful in practice. The research in the field is in its infancy in regards to the robustness of the models to a large diversity of signs and signers, and to fairness of the models to performers from different demographics. This work summarises the ChaLearn LAP Large Scale Signer Independent Isolated SLR Challenge, organised at CVPR 2021 with the goal of overcoming some of the aforementioned challenges. We analyse and discuss the challenge design, top winning solutions and suggestions for future research. The challenge attracted 132 participants in the RGB track and 59 in the RGB+Depth track, receiving more than 1.5K submissions in total. Participants were evaluated using a new large-scale multi-modal Turkish Sign Language (AUTSL) dataset, consisting of 226 sign labels and 36,302 isolated sign video samples performed by 43 different signers. Winning teams achieved more than 96% recognition rate, and their approaches benefited from pose/hand/face estimation, transfer learning, external data, fusion/ensemble of modalities and different strategies to model spatio-temporal information. However, methods still fail to distinguish among very similar signs, in particular those sharing similar hand trajectories.