Interpreters & Captioner's Role in an Academic Environment Faculty Guidelines

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The interpreters/captioners employed by CSU, Stanislaus are highly skilled professionals. They have studied long and hard in the field of deafness and interpreting and are bound to abide by a strict code of ethics. Interpreters/captioners provide an effective accommodation to a student, which enables them to achieve their academic goal(s).

The Code of Ethics emphasizes the need for all assignments to be strictly confidential, for the interpreter/captioner to remain neutral, and for the interpreter/captioner to follow the intent of the speaker at all times. The interpreter/captioner cannot participate in class discussion or advise the deaf student.

The interpreter/captioner is there to facilitate communication between the student, the instructor, and fellow classmates. The interpreter/captioner will not only interpret/captioner the lectures and classroom activities, but will also voice what the deaf student signs. It is important to include the deaf student in any classroom discussion, and encourage participation as you would with any student. The interpreter/captioner is usually a sentence or two behind the speaker while interpreting. For this reason, it may take the deaf student a few seconds longer to respond. If at all possible, try to limit class discussion to one person speaking at a time.

The interpreter/captioner is not responsible for the student's behavior, comments, study habits, or progress. Remember, anytime the interpreter/captioner speaks during class, it is the words of the deaf student and not the interpreter's ideas or feelings being expressed.

The interpreter/captioner will sign all comments heard during class. This includes environmental noises when possible. If the interpreter/captioner is asked a direct question, he or she will sign and talk at the same time so the deaf student always knows what is being said. Please refrain from making comments that you don't want the interpreter to sign.

It is important for the deaf student to be able to watch the interpreter/captioner and the speaker at the same time. For this reason, it is preferred that the interpreter/captioner sit facing the class, as close to the speaker as possible, without interfering with the speaker. For a short while, other students may be curious and may tend to watch the interpreter/captioner; this attention wanes soon after the first week.

The interpreters/captioner have very busy schedules and may not stay with one deaf student throughout the day. Please respect the time limits of the class, and understand if the interpreter must leave when the class is scheduled to end.

If you have questions or concerns about services or the student, please contact the DRS Office at 667-3159. Please refrain from questioning the interpreter.