Designated or preferred? A deaf academic and two signed language interpreters working together for a PhD defence: a case study of best practice

Maartje De Meulder, Jemina Napier, Christopher Stone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

In this paper we present an appreciative inquiry case study of our work together in a PhD defence, which we believe demonstrates a best practice in the field of signed language interpreting. We call into question the meaning and relevance of the ‘designated interpreter’ model, examining whether there is a ‘perfect formula’ for deaf academics and interpreters working together, not only in PhD defences, but also in academia more generally. We also challenge the very system for the provision of interpreter services as an institution creating structural inequalities, because it is heavily based on privilege. We argue that what is key is preference (i.e. the ability to exercise real choice) and familiarity, rather than the assignation of a ‘designated’ interpreter, and that simply achieving a degree in interpreting cannot guarantee that an interpreter will be prepared to meet the needs of deaf professionals. We also argue that sign language interpreter education needs to focus more than it does now on training to work into English (and/or other spoken languages in non-English-speaking countries), on performing visibly comfortable language work, and on specific specializations linked to deaf professional access and continuing professional development.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-26
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Interpreter Education
Volume10
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 26 Dec 2018

Fingerprint

interpreter
best practice
language
spoken language
specialization
privilege
speaking
guarantee
ability
education

Keywords

  • sign language
  • sign language interpreting
  • academics
  • deaf
  • PhD defence
  • designated interpreter model

Cite this

@article{884db2f208814565bb806abd9b49682f,
title = "Designated or preferred? A deaf academic and two signed language interpreters working together for a PhD defence: a case study of best practice",
abstract = "In this paper we present an appreciative inquiry case study of our work together in a PhD defence, which we believe demonstrates a best practice in the field of signed language interpreting. We call into question the meaning and relevance of the ‘designated interpreter’ model, examining whether there is a ‘perfect formula’ for deaf academics and interpreters working together, not only in PhD defences, but also in academia more generally. We also challenge the very system for the provision of interpreter services as an institution creating structural inequalities, because it is heavily based on privilege. We argue that what is key is preference (i.e. the ability to exercise real choice) and familiarity, rather than the assignation of a ‘designated’ interpreter, and that simply achieving a degree in interpreting cannot guarantee that an interpreter will be prepared to meet the needs of deaf professionals. We also argue that sign language interpreter education needs to focus more than it does now on training to work into English (and/or other spoken languages in non-English-speaking countries), on performing visibly comfortable language work, and on specific specializations linked to deaf professional access and continuing professional development.",
keywords = "sign language, sign language interpreting, academics, deaf, PhD defence, designated interpreter model",
author = "{De Meulder}, Maartje and Jemina Napier and Christopher Stone",
year = "2018",
month = "12",
day = "26",
language = "English",
volume = "10",
pages = "5--26",
journal = "International Journal of Interpreter Education",
issn = "2150-5772",
publisher = "Conference of interpreter trainers",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Designated or preferred? A deaf academic and two signed language interpreters working together for a PhD defence: a case study of best practice

AU - De Meulder, Maartje

AU - Napier, Jemina

AU - Stone, Christopher

PY - 2018/12/26

Y1 - 2018/12/26

N2 - In this paper we present an appreciative inquiry case study of our work together in a PhD defence, which we believe demonstrates a best practice in the field of signed language interpreting. We call into question the meaning and relevance of the ‘designated interpreter’ model, examining whether there is a ‘perfect formula’ for deaf academics and interpreters working together, not only in PhD defences, but also in academia more generally. We also challenge the very system for the provision of interpreter services as an institution creating structural inequalities, because it is heavily based on privilege. We argue that what is key is preference (i.e. the ability to exercise real choice) and familiarity, rather than the assignation of a ‘designated’ interpreter, and that simply achieving a degree in interpreting cannot guarantee that an interpreter will be prepared to meet the needs of deaf professionals. We also argue that sign language interpreter education needs to focus more than it does now on training to work into English (and/or other spoken languages in non-English-speaking countries), on performing visibly comfortable language work, and on specific specializations linked to deaf professional access and continuing professional development.

AB - In this paper we present an appreciative inquiry case study of our work together in a PhD defence, which we believe demonstrates a best practice in the field of signed language interpreting. We call into question the meaning and relevance of the ‘designated interpreter’ model, examining whether there is a ‘perfect formula’ for deaf academics and interpreters working together, not only in PhD defences, but also in academia more generally. We also challenge the very system for the provision of interpreter services as an institution creating structural inequalities, because it is heavily based on privilege. We argue that what is key is preference (i.e. the ability to exercise real choice) and familiarity, rather than the assignation of a ‘designated’ interpreter, and that simply achieving a degree in interpreting cannot guarantee that an interpreter will be prepared to meet the needs of deaf professionals. We also argue that sign language interpreter education needs to focus more than it does now on training to work into English (and/or other spoken languages in non-English-speaking countries), on performing visibly comfortable language work, and on specific specializations linked to deaf professional access and continuing professional development.

KW - sign language

KW - sign language interpreting

KW - academics

KW - deaf

KW - PhD defence

KW - designated interpreter model

M3 - Article

VL - 10

SP - 5

EP - 26

JO - International Journal of Interpreter Education

JF - International Journal of Interpreter Education

SN - 2150-5772

IS - 2

ER -