Volume 8, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1384-6647
  • E-ISSN: 1569-982X
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Interpreter educators who strive to recruit and retain students with the potential to succeed in their post-secondary programs want to be able to identify the complex personal and cognitive characteristics typical of these students. The present investigation expanded upon previous studies of second-language students and working interpreters by focusing on the characteristics of sign language interpreting students who had transitioned from language learning into interpretation coursework. An instrument was designed to evaluate student and faculty perceptions of the academic habits and skills, information processing, and personality traits most important for success in interpretation courses and those that needed the most development. A sample of sign language interpreting students and faculty (N = 1,357) was recruited in Austria, Canada, Great Britain and the United States, and participants selected online or paper versions of the instrument. Results indicated that achievement might be affected by factors such as interaction in the native sign language community, interaction with instructors, and repetition of language courses for enhancement. The responses of students and faculty were compared for agreement on the characteristics most likely to motivate students to complete rigorous interpreting programs and for characteristics that must be developed to improve confidence and performance.


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