In the quest for the best practices, the field of interpreting and transliterating have borrowed from other professions to support the delivery of quality services. One of those techniques taken from the medical field is case conferencing to hone what Rushworth Kidder terms ethical fitness.
This workshop will outline the process for participating in case conferencing to discuss situations faced by interpreters and transliterators. Using the Demand Control Schema as developed by Robyn Dean and Robert Pollard, participants will be able to present their own cases and explain what challenges they face and the steps taken to address these demands.
This initial face-to-face workshop will provide the foundation for ongoing case conferencing supported by the Region III Low Incidence Project which will occur alternately online and in face-to-face settings.
While designed specifically to address issues faced by interpreters and transliterators ~ other members of the educational team, such as teachers, speech language clinicians, parents, etc ~ would be welcome participants.
Successful participants will be able to:
- Identify the four categories of demands in the Demand Control Schema
- Explain the three dimensions of interpreter role-space
- Evaluate sample case studies to determine effectiveness for case conferencing
- Construct a case study to be used in a case conferencing session
This session will be extremely interactive – using a combination of brief presentation and large and small group discussions.
Case Conferencing Resources
Resources Related to Educational Interpreting
The National Association of Interpreters in Education
The National Association of Interpreters in Education (NAIE) is a professional organization for interpreters in educational settings established in 2016. http://naiedu.org/
by Melissa B. Smith
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)
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.
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.
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
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.
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
Here are a list of articles that touch on the importance of Case-Conferencing:
Suggestions for Preparing a Case
These are suggestions based on my experience of helping to facilitate case conferences. It is based strongly on the Demand-Control Schema as developed by Robyn Dean and Robert Pollard. (See more on the DC-S here.)
- Case conferencing is about improving our practice. While it may be interpreters talking to each other, we need to keep at the forefront or discussion how this benefits the people with whom we work.
- Describe the case in a non-evaluative manner. Share the facts of what happened and specific observations. Do not include judgements and conclusions.
- Be as discreet as possible in sharing identifying information. If possible, check with those involved to ask for their permission in sharing the case as a situation from which to learn with colleagues.
- Be accountable. This process is not only about looking at our role, but also our responsibilities. (Dean & Pollard, 2011) The person presenting the case is the one who determines where dilemmas exist. You will learn from your colleagues in the discussion, but it is vital for the discussion that you acknowledge that you have the greatest insight into the situation because you were there. This is not about simply looking at the choices of the interpreter but also looking at the consequences for all participants.
What to Consider:
- The Participants: Share who was involved in the case. If relevant, include:
- Demographic information: age, gender, race, ethnicity, hearing status/identity, language, education
- Relationship between participants, including balance of power
- The Purpose/Goal(s) of the interaction
- Recognize different participants may have different purposes or goals for being present
- The Setting:
- Description of the physical environment and the logistical set-up;
- Any other stimulus (e.g. visual aids, music, background noise) that affects the dynamics
- Duration and frequency of interaction
What to Present:
- Demands, Controls, Consequences & Resulting Demands
- Share the points in the interaction that represented the dilemma for you as the interpreter
- Use DC-S dialogic work analysis (Dean & Pollard, 2011)
- What were the constellation of demands? (Identify both main & concurrent)
- Environmental, Interpersonal (most commonly main), Paralinguistic, or Intrapersonal
- What controls were used?
- Where did they fit on the conservative to liberal continuum?
- What were the consequences?
- What were the resulting demands?
- What were the constellation of demands? (Identify both main & concurrent)
- What role-space was occupied implementing different controls?
- How did you align with the participants?
- What degree of influence did you exert over the interaction between participants?
- What level of presentation of self did you use?
- What questions were generated by your experience in this case?
- What is your sense of the perceptions of the participants about the interaction?
- What did you learn from this case that you will apply to your future practice?
- What information can your colleagues provide you that can help clarify the issues in this case?
- Dean & Pollard, 2011. “Context-based Reasoning in interpreting” in The Interpreter and Translator Trainer 5(1), 155-182.
- Lee & Llwellyn-Jones, 2014. Redefining the Role of the Community Interpreter: The concept of role-space. Lincoln, UK: SLI Press.
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.
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.”
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.
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.
- The presentation from Robert Lee and Peter Llewellyn-Jones from the CIT Conference
- A paper from Supporting Deaf People conference in 2011
- A video explanation in ASL of this concept by Robert Lee – created for the Gallaudet University Regional Interpreter Education Center
Relational Autonomy – Presentation by Anna Witter-Merithew & Brenda Nicodemus
Blog Posts on Street Leverage on related topics by Anna Witter-Merithew:
- Sign Language Interpreters: Stepping Out of the Shadow of Invisibility
- Sign Language Interpreters: Are Acts of Omission a Failure of Duty?
- Sign Language Interpreters: Breaking Down Silos Through Reflective Practice
- Nurse Autonomy as Relational by Chris MacDonald (Contact Doug for further information)