Hope you're all getting outside as much as possible to soak in the warm air, sunshine & friends.
For today's blog - I'm going to cover something I find real important for amateur ASL interpreters to notice.
I came upon this important law from Oregon state that sums up skills that professional ASL interpreters need to be aware of:
- According to ORS 45.275(9)(c), a “qualified interpreter” is: “a person who is readily able to communicate with the non-English-speaking person and who can orally transfer the meaning of statements to and from English and the language spoken by the non-English-speaking person. A qualified interpreter must be able to interpret in a manner that conserves the meaning, tone, level, style and register of the original statement, without additions or omissions. ‘Qualified interpreter’ does not include any person who is unable to interpret the dialect, slang or specialized vocabulary used by the party or witness.”
A lot of amateur interpreters wonder why it takes about a good solid 1 to 2 years to mentor with me when they can only commit a few hours per month. Research has proven that 4 hours per week is best amount of hours to master a foreign language - may I add, that is also IF a person is able to retain all new skills they've learned & apply it fluently and with a lot of practice to upkeep.
Because most ASL students cannot just swallow up 1,000 of new words/signs and ASL concepts in few hours...it will require a lot of time to sift through multiple layers of processing, synthesizing and expressing complex English information into ASL and vice versa---- however, I understand and respect very busy adult students who are full time schooling, parents, and working a full schedule. But I do get tired when people are suspicious that I am out for their money which is not the case at all... I expect my ASL students to be high advanced level according to the ACTFL gauge.
Because I don't want to lecture people when I am training them - they may sometimes assume I am not teaching anything important. Many times when I point out the same issues that keep cropping over over months or a year or so - it's because the students needs to drop that bad habit or add a new better skill to get ahead.
So with great ORS 45.275(9)(c) law - a "qualified interpreter" must be able to interpreter fluently the meaning, tone, level, style and register of the original statement, without addition or omissions.
So when I observe an interpreter, I am watching for all of these skills that you have to FLUENTLY demonstrate. This is A LOT to cover and a lot to remember and apply.
So always ask yourself:
1. Is my meaning the same as what the spoken message is conveyed?
2. How is my tone matching to the presenter's tone?
3. Am I using the appropriate level?
4. What style do I need to apply for this deaf customer/s?
5. Am I using the correct register for this lecture?
and the most important:
6. Am I omitting very important details?
7. Am I adding unnecessary "fluff" or untrue details that does not belong in my interpreted performance?
Apply this daily in your homework and it will surely speed up your learning progress.