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American Sign Language — a pivotal element in ensuring effective communication

Homeland Language Services provides various interpreting services to facilitate communication among people who speak different languages. Among these services is American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation, a pivotal element in ensuring effective communication between the hard-of-hearing community and those who are hearing. 

The process of ASL interpretation is intricate, demanding a distinct skill set and a profound comprehension of Deaf culture. ASL interpreters must possess fluency in both ASL and English, a keen understanding of the cultural subtleties within Deaf communities, and the capacity to interpret spoken language swiftly and accurately into ASL. 

For a more in-depth perspective on ASL interpretation, we engaged in a conversation with one of our ASL interpreters, Flann Fleischer, who generously shared his professional journey and offered valuable insights into the field. 

  1. 1. What inspired you to become an American Sign Language interpreter, and how did you get started in the field? 

 – My first Language is ASL (American Sign Language) as my parents and sister are Deaf.  I learned ASL and then English second.  My Parents were educators and heavily invoked with the Deaf Community. Plus, my Grandparents on both sides of the family were also Deaf and many aunts, uncles, and cousins are also Deaf or Codas (Children of Deaf Adults) like myself.   

Naturally, this background gave me native language skills and cultural knowledge to succeed as an ASL Interpreter.  

  1. 2. What do you think are the most important qualities of a successful American Sign Language interpreter, and how do you cultivate those qualities in yourself? 

  – It’s important to have strong language skills in both the source and target language and to understand the cultural values and norms.    

Knowledge and application of the NAD-RID Code of Professional Conduct (rid.org) is also required to be successful and professional in the field of sign language interpretation. 

Other than that, I think it’s important to be genuinely friendly, patient, and flexible while being professional when dealing with people in all aspects of the interpreting, field.  I find that it makes the work more enjoyable, and more opportunities develop.  Avoid being that interpreter no one wants to work with. 

  1. 3. How do you stay engaged and motivated in your work as an interpreter, and what advice do you have for others who may be interested in pursuing this career path? 

 – I truly enjoy the diversity of assignments. The different experiences helped me to keep interested as well as increase my understanding of a wide breadth of knowledge and situations. 

My advice for people who want to enter the field of interpreting is to immerse yourself in the language and culture.  Be patient knowing that life experiences in the field will lead to more knowledge and proficiency. 

  1. 4. What do you like about working at Homeland Language Services? 

 – I enjoy working with the people at Homeland Language Services. Everyone was professional and kind! 


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Understanding ASL Interpretation: A Guide to Effective Communication

As a language services provider, Homeland Language Services offers a range of interpreting services to help bridge communication gaps between people who speak different languages. One such service is American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation, which is a crucial component in enabling effective communication between the Deaf community and hearing individuals.

ASL interpretation is a complex process that requires a unique skill set and understanding of Deaf culture. An ASL interpreter needs to be fluent in both ASL and English, understand the cultural nuances of Deaf communities, and have the ability to quickly and accurately interpret spoken language into ASL.

To gain a deeper understanding of ASL interpretation, we spoke to one of our ASL interpreters, Nicole Lewis, who shared her journey and insights about the profession.

  • What inspired you to become an American Sign Language interpreter, and how did you start?

I never thought I would become a sign language interpreter. At the age of 10, I became friends with a deaf girl (with whom I am still an excellent friend to this day) who lived in my neighborhood, and picked up the language to be able to communicate with her. During that time, her interpreter set up an after-school club for anyone who wanted to learn ASL. I then went on and took four years in high school as a language. I was encouraged to attend college to become an interpreter. I am humbled by the support I have had through the years of learning and meeting many people in the Deaf/DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing communities.

  • What do you think are the most important qualities of a successful American Sign Language interpreter, and how do you cultivate those qualities in yourself?

ASL is a language all on its own and is not a direct translation of English to signs, which means someone who interprets ASL needs to be familiar with and obtain the skill set(s) of both languages. An interpreter bridges the gap between deaf and hearing clients. They also need to have deep cultural knowledge and understanding of Deaf culture and their community. I try to cultivate those qualities as well by staying on top of the newest signs, researching topics when possible before interpreting them, and always trying to find the equivalent dynamic of the languages I interpret. I also try to stay abreast of the CPC (code of professional conduct).

  • How do you stay engaged and motivated in your work as an interpreter, and what advice do you have for others who may be interested in pursuing this career path?

Staying motivated isn’t that hard! I have grown up learning ASL and being active in the community and making lifelong friends. Being open to learning, going to workshops, and finding events to attend are a few ways to stay motivated. The Deaf/DeafBlind communities are welcoming to everyone, and the close connections you make along the way hold a special place in one’s heart. My advice to others interested in pursuing a career path in becoming a sign language interpreter is to get involved, make connections, find mentors, never stop learning, and enjoy the journey of learning this beautiful language.

At Homeland Language Services, we understand the importance of effective communication, and our team of skilled ASL interpreters is committed to bridging the gap between the Deaf community and hearing individuals. If you need ASL interpretation services, whether on-site or via video, please contact us to discuss your needs. We are here to help you communicate clearly and effectively, regardless of language barriers.

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video interpreting service in Los Angeles

Finding The Best Sign Language Translator

Have you been looking for the best sign language translator? Well, a good sign language translator should be someone who can help those who are Hard of Hearing or deaf people to understand spoken words or written document by converting the contents into sign language.

A sign language translator near you needs to entirely understand the niche at hand and accurately translate the contents for the client. Not only should the best sign language interpreter master the English language and have renown skills in sign language, but communication and listening skills are necessary as well. Equally important is a good memory since the translator will most of the time need to remember what has been said or what they have read from documents in detail to translate the information precisely.

Sometimes, the translator is supposed to research before translation when encountered with technical or complicated information that requires translation. Often, she or he will have to refer to encyclopedias, dictionaries, or any other available reference materials, provide accurate information, and possess a good knowledge of the subject to be tackled.
There are three common areas where a sign language translator is likely to be found.

Community Sign Language Translator
A community is a group of people living together in a span area. Some of the best sign language translators are found in hospitals, banks, courthouses, schools, colleges, etc. From the niches covered, these sign language translators are more likely to work every day. Therefore there is no day a hard of hearing or deaf person will be limited to contents, and also they can communicate with others freely. Community translators also need to be trustworthy and discreet since many of their translations will involve private nature.

Video Relay Service Sign Language Translators
For a video relay service to occur between a hearing person on one end and a deaf or hard of hearing person on the terminal end, they need to use a videophone or a computer with a webcam and use the internet as a medium of connection. A deaf person usually connects to a hearing person in real-time and use video communication to communicate. These calls are usually made in places like hospitals, when to book an appointment with the doctor, enquire about school application, job application, make credit card or bank inquiries, etc. such kind of tasks for sign language translator near me should make them readily available to offer their services on demand.

Education Sign Language Translators
The education sign language translators work in schools, from the junior level to the postgraduate levels. Their work schedules usually rhyme with the school schedule unless when you book an appointment for off-schedule tuition. Their work involves delivering the spoken word from the teacher or instructor to the deaf or hard of hearing learners and facilitating learning. This translation is beneficial as it enhances all the students’ growth and progress since the translator is part of the school team.


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