Sign Language Workshops and Sign Language Seminars offered by SLSI

Sign Language Continuing Education Activities

RID Approved Sponsor #0015

Seminars and workshops are designed to engage participants’ critical thinking skills and open a professional dialogue between the instructor and the participants, and between the participants themselves. The presentation format is organized to remind and instruct the participants about the historical development of the field as it pertains to each topic area, to describe the current status of the profession in the topic area, and to create a desired future direction. Problem-solving and discussions about current issues revolve around a case study approach evolving from Participant interests and experience. Audience participation is expected.

Seminar Titles: Contact us for seminar description, goals, and objectives.


Performing Arts Interpreting: Can ASL and English Dance Together?

Interpreters are actresses and actors. We assume the character and characteristics of the persons for whom we interpret in each and every assignment. It is, therefore, no surprise that many of us provide services in a variety of theatrical settings. The question now becomes, “Are we performing interpreters, or interpreters for the performance.” And, more importantly, how do we approach this arena of work to make it meaningful for the WHOLE audience and the cast with whom we work? This seminar is designed to take a look at one aspect: interpreting for musicals and how to make our work carry an equivalent message and associated aesthetics.

Educational Interpreters: A Response from the Nation

Educational interpreting is different…or is it? In order to find out, a national survey of stakeholders in the field of interpreting in pre-college (K-12) educational settings was conducted. Certified and non-certified interpreters, state coordinators of hearing impaired programs, program directors of schools for the deaf, consumers, parents, guardians, interpreter preparation faculty, and teachers of the deaf were asked their perceptions of the essential competencies, other related responsibilities and education necessary for the entry level interpreter, prior to beginning work in the classroom. Perceptions were requested for kindergarten/elementary, middle/junior high school, and secondary senior high school aged students. This seminar will discuss the results of that study and their implications on certification, hiring, retention, and training of interpreters working in the American public school system.

Educational Interpreting: Theory to Practice

School districts have the tendency of placing the newest interpreters at the younger levels, because the children “don’t know as much as the older students.“ However, the field knows all too well that highly skilled interpreters are needed at all levels. Seminars for interpreters in pre-college educational settings generally consist of lectures. This seminar will be a combination of lecture, group discussion and hands up/voice on interpreting. Each participant is expected to move outside their comfort zone and interpret in the hardest setting ever: in front of their peers.

Professional Conduct: The Self-Actualized Interpreters

“A life unexamined is not worth living.“ The new Code of Professional Conduct was overwhelmingly adopted by the national association for the deaf. This represents the first change in a code of ethics or professional conduct for American Sign Language interpreters in over 30 years. This seminar is designed to review the current Code of Professional Conduct and practice application of the new Code through participant-generated scenarios in a case study approach.

Introduction to Interpreting in the Legal Arena

We have all been interpreting in situations that suddenly feel legal.  This could be because they are!  Interpreting in legal settings could be an Individual Education Plan, a will, a medical power of attorney, an emergency room call that turns into a child or elder abuse investigation, a wedding, or with the victim of any crime.  The first step is being aware, then having the training to fall back on in responding.  Various settings will be discussed along with approaches.  Discussion of the Specialist Certificate: Legal will be included.

Interpreting in the American Justice System

“I am afraid of legal interpreting.  The court room intimidates me.”  As well it should.  It is designed to do so!  Legal interpreting has its tense moments, but the majority of work is rather routine.  However, it can never be routine if you know nothing about it, or have not had its inner workings somewhat demystified.  This workshop is designed to provide an introduction to interpreting within the legal system (civil and criminal).

Introduction to Legal Interpreting TOC

Waiver of Rights

Flow of Criminal Proceedings

Medical Interpreting: Meeting the Standard of Care

As the population ages, we find more and more work in the medical arena.  This work has always been there, but the spreading awareness of and on-going advocacy around the Americans with Disabilities Act has expanded this arena even more!  The new Code of Professional Conduct recognizes the need to “do no harm,” as well our role as a medical team member.  Our “bedside manner,” our professionalism, and role as the “attending interpreter” demand ongoing training as part of being a “practice profession.”  Background information, vocabulary, approaches, and case studies will be included.  Audience participation is expected.

Medical Interpreting Manual ToC

Interpreting in Mental Health Settings

Religious Interpreting: A Call to Excellence

There is a long and noble history of religious workers being one group in the triune of the genesis of Sign Language Interpreters (CODAs/Family and educators) world wide.  However, the arena of religious interpreting has largely gone ignored by the profession.  The reasons for this may be due to the traditional separation of church and state and the unique governance structure of the various religions and their denominations.  However, no arena can be more important than the health of the soul and the human spirit.  Being led to this arena, one must also be led to excellence of service delivery.  This requires on-going education not only in interpreting, but the religious tenets one interprets.  This workshop will focus on interpreting in a Presbyterian church, but a basis that can be generalized across all religious interpreting.

Standards and Testing: What You are Entitled to When Your Skills are Tested

Testing and certification of interpreters has been part of our profession since 1972. There have been several iterations of the RID testing protocol, state level screening, and specialty testing. Interpreters have accepted testing as part of their reality, but have not always had their rights protected under psychometric industry standards of valid, reliable, fair, and legally defensible testing instruments. This seminar will explore the intricacies of testing and what interpreters should expect from high stakes testing entities.

American Sign Language Testing: The Texas Assessment of Sign Communication (TASC)

For the Record: The History of RID