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14:2 Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Qualifying Healthcare Interpreters

New Volume Provides a Standardized Body of Knowledge on Healthcare Interpreting

“Given the importance of healthcare interpreting, both in terms of the high stakes involved and the fact that it affects almost all deaf individuals and their family members, it is time for our field to seriously expand the number of evidence-based publications that are accessible and available to educators, consumers, and students.” Laurie Swabey and Karen Malcolm, editors of In Our Hands: Educating Healthcare Interpreters, make this careful observation noting the difficulty in obtaining qualified interpreters in the healthcare industry. “As a contribution to that effort,” they continue, “In Our Hands seeks to engage educators in building stronger courses in healthcare interpreting and to further engage the profession in the important work of preparing interpreters to facilitate full access to healthcare communication for Deaf people around the world.”

Swabey and Malcolm also note that, “an equally glaring lack in the field of signed language interpreting is an agreed-upon standardized body of knowledge that all interpreters who work in healthcare settings should master before working unsupervised in these settings. Additionally, there is a lack of professional standards related to decision latitude, particularly in regard to the minute-by-minute decisions regarding boundaries and involvement that interpreters face during every healthcare encounter. Further, the field is in need of additional research on which to base curricula for teaching healthcare interpreters. Consumers and practitioners in the healthcare system face a variety of challenges, but, as educators, the one that is in our hands is the education of healthcare interpreters. May this book be one of the guideposts for significantly increasing the number of qualified interpreters who are well prepared to work in healthcare settings.”

Read more about this new volume, the fifth in the Interpreter Education series, in the editors’ introduction. Order your copy of In Our Hands today and receive 20% off the regular price with your exclusive subscriber discount. For online orders, type “FEB2012” in the box labeled “use promo code” next to the checkout button. Click here to order by mail.


The completely revised and updated edition of Signs of the Times was highlighted in Reference & Research Book News: “This beginning ASL textbook can be used in the classroom or for self-study. Organized into 44 lessons, it presents more than 1,300 signs representing 3,500 English glosses. Each lesson contains simple [black and white] drawings illustrating all signs, English equivalent words and synonyms, sample sentences to define vocabulary context, and practice sentences to reinforce ASL usage. This second edition contains new student activities that can be done in class, as homework, or as quizzes, plus new sign illustrations. This edition features a contextual sign/word appendix that displays groups of sentences using the same English word to show different meanings along with the corresponding ASL signs. It also includes an expanded index, vocabulary lists, and a reading reference list. Also new in this edition, lessons are enlivened with tips, mnemonic devices, and fact boxes on ASL grammar and Deaf culture.” Learn more about the revisions to this second edition, and order Signs of the Times here or by mail.


Reference & Research Book News also noted Jeremy L. Brunson’s new book, Video Relay Service Interpreters: Intricacies of Sign Language Access: “A nationally certified sign language interpreter, Brunson explores the ongoing issue of the professionalization of sign language interpretation, using the emerging medium of video relay service as a case study. He ponders what it means to be a professional, the appropriate relationship between professionals and consumers, and how that relationship is impacted by the growing integration of electronic technology into daily life. Among his topics are the architecture of access, textualizing the on-call and off-call interpreter, and connecting the dots and pointing in new directions.” Video Relay Service Interpreters, the eighth volume in the Studies in Interpretation series, considers the complexities of video relay services, constraints on access imposed by regulatory processes, and future directions suggested by 21 formal interviews with video relay service interpreters. Read chapter two, “The Architecture of Access,” and place your order online or by mail.


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