Letting Go of Role

 June 13, 2017

Ames, Iowa

This presentation will explore new frameworks that have provided new approaches for interpreters.  As a foundation, the Demand-Control Schema, developed by Robyn Dean and Bob Pollard, has helped interpreting recognize its nature as a practice profession.  More recently, Robert Lee and Peter Llewellyn-Jones have used a sociological lens to develop the concepts of role-space for talking about how interpreters do their work.  In our discussion, we will look at how these two frameworks fit together to provide ways for interpreters to be more effective members of education teams – focusing on achieving the optimum results possible for students and teachers alike.

Objectives

Successful participants will be able to:

  • Identify the four steps of the dialogic work analysis of the Demand-Control Schema,
  • Describe the continuum of ethical decision making as articulated by Dean and Pollard,
  • Explain the three dimensions of role-space as described by Lee and Llwellyn-Jones,
  • Analyze a case study to apply these frameworks to ethical decision-making in the classroom.
Workshop Presentation & Handout

Workshop Resources

Workshop Resources

Each of the titles in the list below is a link.  When you click on the title, it will reveal a series of resources contained in that category.

Emerging Paradigm Resources

Educational Interpreting

Resources Related to Educational Interpreting

The National Association of Interpreters in Education

National Association of Interpreters in Education logo
The National Association of Interpreters in Education (NAIE) is a professional organization for interpreters in educational settings established in 2016.    http://naiedu.org/


More than Meets the EyeMore than Meets the Eye: Revealing the Complexities of an Interpreted Education

by Melissa B. Smith
http://gupress.gallaudet.edu/bookpage/MTMEbookpage.html

View the Ph.D. Dissertation this book is based on here.

Dr. Smith did a lecture at Gallaudet University on this topic.

You can see all of the presentations archived by Gallaudet University Regional Interpreter Education Center here.


Understanding the Impact of Interpretability in Mainstream Classrooms

This chapter by Betsy Winston lays out the limitations for rigid understandings of interpreting in classroom settings.

Winston, B. 2004.  “Interpretability and Accessibility of Mainstream Classrooms,” In Educational Interpreting:  How it Can Succeed.  Gallaudet University Press.  See the article.


Articles about Educational Interpreting

New Paradigms in the Interpreted Classroom:  An article written by Doug Bowen-Bailey for the RID Views -(in press August 2014)

Ethical Choices: Educational Sign Language Interpreters as Change Agents

Perspectives from Gina Oliva

Dr. Oliva is the author of “Alone in the Mainstream” sharing her experience as an “only” going through mainstreamed settings – as well as some of her research about other deaf people who went through the mainstream in a similar way.

  • Sign Language Interpreters in Mainstream Classrooms: Heartbroken and Gagged
    An article  on Street Leverage.  Check it out.
  • K-12 Interpreters:  A Call to Arms for Sign Language Interpreter Programs
    An article on StreetLeverage.  Check it out.

Determining a Student’s Readiness to Successfully Use Interpreting Services

This is an article from Cindy Huff, a teacher of the Deaf/Hard of Hearing, about a framework for assessing if students are at a developmental level appropriate for benefiting from an interpreted education.

View the article

Language Acquisition

The link below has a presentation in ASL about the Common Errors of Young Children Acquiring Sign Language, helpful information in seeing what is normal language development.

Common Errors by Young Children Acquiring a Sign Language

Providing Access: New Roles for Educational Interpreters

By Bernhardt E. Jones, Ed.D., C.S.C.

Originally published in the RID VIEWS

Conflicts can, and do, occur when it is unclear as to the interpreter’s role at any given time. This function changes during the day, especially in the lower grades. I am suggesting (as has Winston) that the title, “educational interpreter” is too narrow, and, in fact, this position is a multi-faceted responsibility. If this is true, how do we separate the roles? How do we define what it is that we do and when?

A year ago Winston (Views) did a fine job in delineating educational interpreting responsibilities into three roles: interpreting, tutoring and aiding. Since then, Winston has discussed the notion that consulting is also a role that educational interpreters play. Consulting may be a new area that you had not considered before. But, think about all the times you have given your input in the school situation. How many times have you talked to parents? How many times have you explained “deafness” to others in the school? to students? to administrators? to regular education teachers? You may find that this list is long. Go to the dictionary or, better, go to the Web and search the word, “consulting” or “consultant” and see what you find. Do you fit into this definition during part of the time you are working in the school setting?

The public school educational interpreter is viewed quite often as a paraprofessional and, in fact, is categorized that way in many states. However, we can make the case that, although the interpreter does perform many of the duties of the paraprofessional, she/he also performs a duty that is quite different and requires separate and distinct knowledge and skills: interpreting itself. Are we not, then, more than an educational interpreter? Might we be, to use a term that Winston has expressed, an “Accessibility Specialist?” I don’t want to confuse the issue with additional terms for us, but think about the variety of tasks you perform. Perhaps we are not “just the interpreter,”but we are more than the interpreter.

Take a look at your day (or week or month, if you would like). Make a list of all the duties you perform. Try to think of everything that happens in your job. What do you do? How long do you do it? Make the list as long and comprehensive as you can. You should have a collection of everything you do. You may be surprised to see that you do quite a bit for the school and the students (both deaf/hard of hearing and hearing).

The Windmill Model

WindmillGraphic

Note: The graphic has been updated since the article was written so it does not perfectly correspond to the article.

The next step is to draw your own windmill and categorize the duties/tasks that you have listed. Interpreting will include anything you do in the role of an interpreter. Tutoring will include all the tasks you do within that context. Aiding is a large and varied area or responsibility. Think of all the things you do in an aiding capacity. As discussed above, consulting is also an important role of the educational interpreter.

Isn’t this appropriate? A windmill spins in the wind and must be flexible (accommodating) in order to operate effectively and efficiently. If one of the blades is broken or damaged, the windmill will not operate properly. Are we like that?

I suggest that we are. With this model we can delineate our roles. When we are able to do that, we can better understand why dilemmas cause conflict. Conflict arises when we are not sure on which blade to categorize our dilemma. We are better able to handle conflict if we know the rules by which to address the conflict. When conflict arises, we know where it fits and, therefore, we know how to respond (how to “spin” our windmill). [I guess it depends upon who is blowing on our windmill.] The blades of the windmill can be viewed as contexts. When we know the contexts, we know the rules. This is where the Code of Ethics has caused us concerns. When applied to the interpreting blade (role, context) of the model, it is easy to understand the importance of the Code and to adhere to its principles. When we apply those same criteria to the other blades (roles), it becomes cloudy and appears to conflict with the role. The problem is compounded if other professionals do not know our contexts and/or confuse our contexts (roles, blades). We then can apply the “educating others about our role(s)” principle of the Code by explaining our contexts and the roles to others on the educational team. The other members of the educational team will not realize this by themselves. We have a professional obligation to educate our fellow professionals. By doing so, we will be viewed as professionals.

This is only the beginning. When we understand which role we are working within, we can start addressing bigger questions in our field. These questions might involve questions of interpretability in the classroom, accessibility to content, an interpreted education. These questions impact our windmill and, therefore services to students who are deaf and hard of hearing.


Information about the Educational Interpreter Performance Assessment

This site provides information both about the test and about the expectations for interpreters  working in educational settings.  classroominterpreting.org

Guides for Classroom Interpreting for Parents, Professionals, and Students

Dr. Brenda Schick, the co-creator of the EIPA, along with Boys Town, created a series of guides for the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center.

http://www.gallaudet.edu/clerc-center/our-resources/publications/classroom-interpreting-for-students-who-are-deaf-or-hard-of-hearing.html

Training in Interpreting Public Schools (TIPS)

TASK12:  This is the organization that led to the development of the Training in Public Schools (TIPS) module. The project serves 14 states and provides both training and assessment with the EIPA.

Post-Secondary  & Transition Resources:

The Minnesota Transition Guide for Teachers of Deaf/Hard of Hearing was created as a pilot project for the school year 2012 – 2013. It is meant to give guidance in the area of transition for Deaf or Hard of Hearing students.  View Transition Guide.

PEPnet:  An organization focused assisting Deaf and hard of hearing students in their transition to post-secondary education.   They have a module, Map It!, that is designed as a support for students in the transition stages.

Article from 2003 RID Views

 

Posted in: "Exploring Emerging Paradigms" Resources, "Finding Your Place" Resources, "Part of the Team" Resources, "TIPS-Light" Resources, "Turning on the Light" Resources, Case Conferencing Resources, Emerging Paradigm Resources, In Service to Literacy, Mentoring Resources, Moving toward Best Practice, Sense of Place, Swiss Army Knife Tools

Theory of Mind

Developing a Theory of Mind

Brenda Schick, in a chapter in the book, Educational Interpreting:  How It Can Succeed, explains how the developing of a Theory of Mind (ToM) is related to educational development for students and how that can be impacted by receiving schooling through an interpreter. Theory of Mind is defined by Wikipedia as “the ability to attribute mental states—beliefs, intents, desires, pretending, knowledge, etc.—to oneself and others and to understand that others have beliefs, desires, intentions, and perspectives that are different from one’s own.”

Schick argues that an important part of children developing this ability is to see how people talk about certain topics – recognizing that different people will display different emotions. Receiving information through an interpreter can distort the ability to see/hear how other people are conveying information. Based on the EIPA scores of approximately 1,3000 interpreters, she notes the average prosody score for elementary interpreters was 2.8 for elementary interpreters and 3.0 for secondary interpreters.  (Many states recognize 4.0 as an overall score denoting being qualified to work in classrooms.)  Schick writes of this situation:

Ironically, elementary-aged deaf and hard of hearing children with hearing families, who are likely to be delayed in their Theory of Mind skills and who are still developing their understanding of how minds work, may have the least amount of information in the classroom interpretation to figure out register and identity of the speaker.  (pp 77-78)

Interpreters working with students developing a ToM need to be particularly aware of identifying who is speaking in the classroom and providing information about how someone is talking about the topic and what might be the underlying meaning to the message conveyed by the prosodic nature of the discourse.  Schick gives the example of a teacher “issuing a warning to finish seatwork by saying ‘It’s getting close to reeecceeesss,’ meaning ‘you may not get to go out if you don’t finish.'”  Note that in this example, the teacher’s pronunciation of the word “recess” is elongated giving it a different meaning than is contained by the word on its face.  If an interpreter doesn’t include that prosody, then a student would not have access to the actual meaning of the phrase.

So, another important thing for interpreters in educational settings to attend to in helping support the educational development of students who are deaf, deafblind, and hard of hearing.

Schick, B.  “Learning through an interpreter,” (pp 73-87) in

Book cover: Green background with gemoetric shapes in blue and pink. Title is: Educatioanl Interpreting: How it can succeed - Elizabeth A. Winston, EditorEducational Interpreting: How it Can Succeed

Edited by Elizabeth Winston

View more information on Gallaudet University Press web site.


 

Picture of three masks used for theatre showing different emotionsNot What You Say, But How

See a more extended consideration of Theory of Mind and its implications for educational interpreters in a blog post I wrote for MRID.  Click here to see the post.

 

Posted in: "Exploring Emerging Paradigms" Resources, "Part of the Team" Resources, Emerging Paradigm Resources, Mentoring Resources, Sense of Place, Swiss Army Knife Tools

How We Learn

Learning from Cognitive Science and Psychology

For the grant project that I am working with the CATIE Center on, this is a real focus for me now – looking at evidence-based practices for how we actually learn.  Here are the two books that I am finding extremely helpful.

Make It Stick:  The Science of Successful Learning

by Brown, Roediger, and McDaniel  Published in 2014.

This books uses stories to illustrate evidence-based practices that help promote durable learning – that is things that last beyond regurgitating items for a test.  Here are some of the principles that help learning last:

  • Effective learning is effortful.  (If it is easy, you probably won’t remember it for the long-term.)
  • Effective learning is spaced out.  (Waiting a week and then testing yourself to try to see if you remember the information – using techniques like flash cards to make yourself try to remember – and then checking to see if you did accurately.)   It is the trying to remember that actually helps establish the neural pathways which allow you to retrieve information for use.
  • Effective learning includes reflection, elaboration, and generation.  Reflect: look back on what you studied and think of how it connects with what you already know; elaborate: make connections to other concepts you use and see how the ideas can be tied together into a mental model; and generate:  imagine how you would apply the concepts in future scenarios.
  • Effective learning uses dynamic assessment.  This includes frequent and low-stakes assessment – like quizzes that both help you know where you stand and also force you to try to retrieve information.  Research shows that this is much better time spent than re-reading or re-watching texts.

I really suggest that this is a book worth reading – to help you learn some powerful tools – and perhaps even more importantly, to be motivated to try some of these new techniques because research also shows that though they produce good results, people sometimes prefer what is familiar because it feels easier and gives the illusion of knowledge.  You might feel like you are learning things more quickly using strategies like re-reading a text – but the reality is that it won’t stick.

Thinking Fast & Slow

by Daniel Kahneman.  Published in 2011.

A book for the lay person by an economic psychologist and Nobel Prize laureate, Kahneman lays out many principles of how our brains work that have an impact on the way we learn.  He uses a great number of examples for the two systems of our brain:

  • System 1:  Our automated brain that is the “thinking fast” part of how we deal with the world.  This is a system designed to make connections, fit information into a cohesive narrative, and jump to conclusions.  It also sometimes fools us and makes serious mistakes because of a number of biases that are built into the process.
  • System 2:  This is the part of our brain requiring conscious effort and is designed to be a check on system 1.  This is the “thinking slow” part.

Kahneman lays out a number of psychological experiments that have demonstrated how these two systems interact and how we sometimes get caught up in thinking errors because we believe we are making decisions solely with our system 2, but that they are often influenced by our system 1.

 

 

Posted in: Discourse Mapping, Emerging Paradigm Resources, In Service to Literacy

Demand-Control Schema

Publications

The work by Robyn Dean and Robert Pollard has facilitated a fundamental shift in the interpreting profession from a deontological sense of ethics to a more teleological one. If you are curious about what that means, check out their web site at: Demand-Control Schema

From their web site, you can contact Robyn Dean for the latest information.  It is important to recognize that understandings of the Demand-Control Schema is not static.  Dean & Pollard are continuing to refine the application of DC-S so be sure to look for the most up-to-date publications and materials.

The latest article from Dean and Pollard which contains the most updated formulation of the Demand-Control Schema in an article format.

Dean & Pollard, 2012.  Context-based Ethical Reasoning in Interpreting:  A Demand Control Schema Perspective.  The Interpreter and Translator Trainer, 5(1) 2011, 155-82.

You can access more of Dean’s publications here.

Webinars & Videos

MARIE Center Webinars

Robyn Dean did a series of webinars in 2014 for the MARIE Center as part of the NCIEC.  These are presented in spoken English with captioning and ASL interpretation.



Videos as Part of NCIEC Mentoring Toolkit

Robyn Dean and Bob Pollard created a series of ASL videos explaining the Demand-Control Schema.  (These are created in ASL without any English translation.)  See those videos under the heading “Robyn Dean.”

Additional Resources

Facebook: get updated information here.

Observation-Supervision: Here’s a blog post from Robyn Dean about the important of developing these groups for observation-supervision.

Text Book:  In 2013, Robyn Dean and Robert Pollard published a textbook on Demand-Control Schema. You can order a copy here.

A Resource on Tacit Schemas for Ethical Decision-Making

Rest, J.R., Navarez, D., Bebeau, M., and Thoma, S.J. (1999).  Postconventional moral thinking:  A neo-Kohlbergian approach.  Mahwah, NJ:  Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Posted in: "Anatomy of Healthcare Interpreter" Resources, "Anatomy of Medical Interpreter" Resources, "Exploring Emerging Paradigms" Resources, "Finding Your Place" Resources, "Part of the Team" Resources, "TIPS-Light" Resources, "Turning on the Light" Resources, Case Conferencing Resources, Emerging Paradigm Resources, In Service to Literacy, Mentoring Resources, Moving toward Best Practice, Putting Theory into Practice, Sense of Place, Swiss Army Knife Tools, Wisconsin Ed Summit, Workshop Resources

Role-Space

The most complete treatment by Robert Lee and Peter Llwellyn-Jones is in their book:

Re-Defining the Role of the Community Interpreter: The concept of role-space.  2014.  Lincoln, UK:  SLI Press.  View on Amazon.

Role-Space-Graph

 

Posted in: "Exploring Emerging Paradigms" Resources, "Finding Your Place" Resources, "Part of the Team" Resources, "TIPS-Light" Resources, "Turning on the Light" Resources, Case Conferencing Resources, Emerging Paradigm Resources, Mentoring Resources, Moving toward Best Practice, Putting Theory into Practice, Sense of Place, Swiss Army Knife Tools, Wisconsin Ed Summit, Workshop Resources

 In Gratitude

Thanks to the organizations who helped to make this workshop possible.

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