Interpreting program has experienced several changes this semester, beginning
with the expansion of the current ASL lab. The lab is now located in two rooms, directly
across the hall from each other.
director, the number of students in the program had outgrown the existing lab
location in the lower level of Burton Business Building.
to work on tutoring sessions and lab assignments. The traffic in the room
was very distracting for those working on the computers,” said Garrett.
tutoring room that we are naming ‘The Bottega.’” [Bottega is an Italian word meaning “a place where master artists
work and invite new younger artists to come work with them and learn their
creating two separate rooms for each use.
lab for lessons,” said Sharon Mehl, a junior ASL major from Higginsville, Mo.
“However, it would be nice if the room itself were a little more spacious; we
often have to commandeer the commuter lounge for labs because there is no
four lab stations with Mac computers installed with Final Cut Pro, and a Teacher’s
their signing/interpreting skills and watch other Deaf people sign too,” says
Pat Adams, faculty/lab liaison. “Then their professors can watch their signing
skills or listen to their voice interpreting from those computers.”
new feature to the ASL lab.
he has worked with the lab, he is able to coordinate the lab curriculum with
the faculty courses in ASL,” said Garrett. “He meets regularly with the other
ASL professors to work on curriculum updates, program outcomes and lab
curriculum. This is to provide the best educational experience for all
resource, Adams and the eight other lab tutors provide a supportive environment
for learning ASL.
more and I see a variety of signing styles on a daily basis,” said Darian
Lightfoot, a sophomore ASL major from Fort Madison, Iowa. “They also act as
liaisons between me and the Deaf community.”
reinforcing what they have been learning in class by reviewing signs,
exhibiting facial expressions and playing word games with ASL signs.
with their signing,” says Adams. “They are very patient and excellent in
finding ways to help the students understand their signs.”
of 1997. From using VHS camcorders originally to state-of-the-art Mac computers
today, the technology has improved tremendously. WWU is also one of the few
schools in the country whose lab is staffed solely by Deaf people.
lab, the main one always goes back to the number of students in the program.
“The number of ASL students enrolled has increased drastically and it means
more work for us lab tutors as well as ASL professors. Gone are the days
that we only had students choosing to major in ASL Interpreting. Now we
have all kinds of students choosing ASL for their common studies foreign
language requirements or for their minor. The work is cut out for us, but the
future looks bright in the ASL department.”