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Working With Interpreters. Workshop for Teachers. Sign Language Interpreters.

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working with interpreters

Working With Interpreters

Workshop for Teachers

sign language interpreters
Sign Language Interpreters

The Americans with Disabilities Act requires the provision of qualified interpreters in a variety of settings. It states that "To satisfy this requirement, the interpreter must have the proven ability to effectively communicate...“

They will:

  • Provide voice for the Deaf student
  • Sign the spoken word for the Deaf student
interpreters background
Interpreters Background
  • Most sign language interpreters have a minimum of two years preparation, many have graduated from a degree program
  • Most Interpreters are certified by the National Association for the Deaf and/or the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf
  • Credentials are obtained by taking and passing a skills assessment
  • All interpreters adhere to a strict code of ethics
signed language
Signed Language

The interpreter translates English into the preferred signed language of the Deaf consumer. American Sign Language (ASL) is the language used by most people in the Deaf community. ASL is a distinct visual-gestural-kinesthetic language. It is not signed English.

interpreter s may be employed by
Interpreter’s may be employed by:
  • the school disrtct, or
  • a private agency, or
  • a state agency

This may determine the role and/or

responsibilities of the interpreter.

if employed by the school
If employed by the school …

interpreters may perform the following duties in addition to their regular interpreter responsibilities:

  • Engage in team teaching
  • Tutor the Deaf or hard of hearing student
  • Correct papers, tests, etc

(continued on next slide)

  • Help manage the student’s behavior
  • Make sure the student understands the material
  • Interpret outside of class time
  • Teach signs to other students or the staff
private agency interpreter s duties responsibilities
Private Agency Interpreter’s Duties & Responsibilities

If the interpreter is employed by a private or state agency, the interpreter will only voice and sign for the Deaf or hard of hearing student. It would not be the interpreter’s responsibility to facilitate the student’s learning, tell teacher if the student is understanding the concepts, or inform the teacher of inappropriate behaviors.

when working with an interpreter
When working with an interpreter:
  • Speak at your regular pace, pitch and decibel level
  • Speak to and look at the Deaf or hard of hearing student (the interpreter voices in the 1st person)
  • Include the Deaf or hard of hearing student in all activities
  • Provide enough translation time for the Deaf or hard of hearing student to respond
  • Provide the interpreter with textbooks and other materials as needed
do not
Do not….
  • Ask the interpreter if the Deaf student understands (ask the student)
  • Tell the interpreter the student’s grades or other personal information about the student
  • Speak about the student in front him/her (the interpreter is obligated to sign everything that is said)
  • Treat the student differently than the other students or have different expectations for the Deaf student
conferences iep meetings
Conferences & IEP Meetings

If the student is involved in the meeting, an interpreter needs to be present. However, the student or parents may request a different interpreter, especially if the student is having trouble with his/her regular interpreter. The School District interpreter may be directly involved in the IEP. The private interpreter may not be.

sign language interpreters12
Sign Language Interpreters…

are highly skilled professionals who listen to another person's words, inflections and intent and translates them into the visual language of signs. The interpreter must also be able to comprehend the signs, inflections and intent of the Deaf or hard of hearing student and simultaneously speak them in articulate, appropriate English. They also must understand the different cultures to promote effective communications.

  • To learn more about sign language interpreters refer to How to Become a Sign Language Interpreter.
  • To learn more about the Deaf Education refer to the Deaf Education Web Site.
  • For advice for working with Deaf students refer to I'm a regular school teacher and I'll have a Deaf student. What to do?