(Conclusion from 2012 SWM ASL Institute Workshop)
Sign Language interpreters tend to have difficulty giving and receiving feedback about their signing skills. The last two articles presented the concept “Take Off Your Interpreter,” as a way to improve the feedback process. In conclusion, here are some practical suggestions.
1. Do not take feedback as a personal attack. Think positively about feedback so you can improve. There is always more to learn. Welcome feedback as an easy way to learn without sitting through boring classes.
2. Realize that the person giving feedback may sincerely want to help. Be patient with their shortcomings. They may not use the right words, their timing may be poor, but their intention may be good.
3. Consider your interpreting from the other person’s point of view. What did they see that you might have missed? Keep an open mind so you can continue to improve.
4. Consider all feedback, even when it is uncomfortable to hear. Do not defend or make excuses. Simply listen and take notes. Mature people can learn from all situations. Learn from everyone – mentors and casual observers. Thank the person for his help.
5. Put “your interpreter” back on. Improve and change. Be willing to try new ideas, Change as needed and appropriate.
Words of Wisdom…
“I would rather change and improve,than to have my way and fail.”
Come to ASL Institute – Check www.silentwordministries.org for details.