ASL/English Interpreting Graduate Program Student Handbook 1. Getting Started

1.1 Faculty Profiles

Full Time Faculty


Sherry Shaw, Ed.D., CSC

Dr. Shaw has been an interpreter educator for 23 years and is Associate Professor and Program Director for the bachelor’s and master’s degree options in ASL/English Interpreting at the University of North Florida. She came to UNF from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock where she taught in the Interpreter Education Program for 18 years. In 2007, she came to UNF to start the “2 + 2” BS degree, and in 2009, she implemented a M.Ed. concentration that is delivered via distance technology. Her research on interpreting student cognitive and motivational characteristics is ongoing and the most recent study measured spoken and signed language students’ cognitive flexibility, visual and verbal memory, attention shift, and processing speed. Additional research interests include community-based learning in interpreter education, social connectedness of Deaf children and senior citizens, interpreting student aptitude, and evidence-based admission testing. She serves as co-editor of the Journal of Interpretation and is a reviewer for the Journal of Community Engagement and Scholarship. She was awarded an Oscar Muñoz Presidential Professorship at UNF for 2011-2013. Dr. Shaw is currently authoring Service-Learning in the Deaf Community and A Student’s Guide to Service-Learning in the Deaf Community, which will be published by Gallaudet University Press in 2013, and serves as Proceedings co-editor for the Conference of Interpreter Trainers.


Dr. Shaw was a faculty intern to the Karl-Franzens University of Graz (Austria) in 2002, and since coming to UNF, she developed Transformational Learning Opportunities (TLOs) that allow interpreting students to participate in short-term study abroad to spoken and signed language interpreting programs at the University of Graz and the University of Ljubljana (Slovenia). As part of these TLOs, students tour the United Nations in Vienna, study in the translation library in Graz, attend interpreting classes in Ljubljana, and interact in the local Deaf community. In her spare time, Dr. Shaw enjoys writing, traveling, gardening, and spending time with family.

Janice Humphrey, Ed.D., CSC, NIC-Advanced, SC:L

Dr. Humphrey joined the faculty at UNF in 2011 as Associate Professor of ASL/English Interpreting. She has been interpreting for over 40 years and has been teaching interpreting for more than 30 years. In the early years of interpreter education, Dr. Humphrey taught interpreting at California State University-Northridge and subsequently established interpreter education programs at Johnson County Community College (Kansas) and Douglas College (British Columbia), where she was Program Coordinator.  


Dr. Humphrey teaches graduate and undergraduate interpreting courses at UNF and is involved in program development and expansion. She is the author of several seminal textbooks in the field, including So You Want to Be an Interpreter? and Decisions! Decisions! Dr. Humphrey came to UNF from Seattle, WA where she was a full-time community and video interpreter and responsible for the professional development of the staff interpreters at an interpreting agency. She served as President of the Conference of Interpreter Trainers (CIT) and the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID). She is the Immediate Past President of Washington State Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf and has been recognized in Biltmore Who’s Who – Featured Member 2010-2011, Cambridge Who’s Who of Executives, Professionals an Entrepreneurs  2008-2009 and Madison’s Who’s Who of Professionals 2007-2008. Travel, photography, and playing card games are some of Dr. Humphrey’s favorite activities outside of teaching and interpreting.


Part Time Faculty


Carolyn Ball, Ph.D., CI, CT
Dr. Ball is the Executive Director of the VRS Interpreting Institute (VRSII) a multi-million dollar, leading-edge teaching facility located in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Dr. Ball has been teaching in interpreter education for over 25 years, as an Associate Professor of Interpreting and Director of the American Sign Language and Interpreting Program at William Woods University in Fulton, MO, Associate Professor of American Sign Language Interpreting at Salt Lake Community College, and Instructor of American Sign Language at Brigham Young University. She received her B.S. and M.A. in Administration from Brigham Young University and earned her Ph.D. in 2007 in Adult Education from Capella University.

Throughout her university experience and career, Dr. Ball has had great passion for teaching, with specific focus on training those who train interpreters. Her doctoral dissertation, The History of American Sign Language Interpreting Educators, was the first-ever treatment of this subject and has become a foundational reference for ASL Interpreting Educators. Dr. Ball has served three times as president of the Conference of Interpreter Trainers.

Eileen Forestal, Ph.D., RSC
Dr. Forestal has been Coordinator and Professor of ASL and Deaf Studies and ASL-English Interpreting at Union County College in New York for 33 years. She holds a doctorate in Postsecondary Education and Adult Learning and a M.Ed. in Deaf Education. She has been a certified Deaf interpreter with the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. since 1979 and has a certificate of teaching ASL and Interpreting. A nationwide consultant and trainer on ASL and interpreting topics, Dr. Forestal has been a member of the National Consortium of Interpreter Education Centers’ (NCIEC) Deaf Interpreter Work Team since its inception in 2006. She is also a cooperating program representative to the NCIEC’s Outcomes Circle for Interpreter Education. Dr. Forestal is a published author of articles and research on interpreting, was co-author and co-director of a DVD production, Deaf Interpreting: Team Strategies, through Gallaudet University.

Carol J. Patrie, Ph.D., CSC, SC:L, CI, CT

Dr. Patrie was one of the first educational interpreters at NTID when it opened. It was an exciting start to a fascinating career. After moving to Washington, DC she completed a Master's Degree at Catholic University and began freelance interpreting in a wide variety of settings, specializing in legal and medical interpreting. In 1984 accepted a faculty position at Gallaudet University. She completed her PhD at the University of Maryland. 


 Dr. Patrie is currently a national and international consultant on interpretation and teaching interpretation and owns her own consulting business, Effective Interpreting, Inc. She is Director of Curriculum and Instruction for The Effective Interpreting Professional Education Series, Language Matters, Inc.  She serves on the editorial boards of the International Journal of Interpreter Education and The Journal of Interpretation. She is a past president of the Conference of Interpreter Trainers and is a recipient of the Mary Stotler Award. She is a recipient of the Outstanding Graduate Faculty award at Gallaudet University where she was professor and director of the MA in Interpretation. 


Dr. Patrie is the author of the seven-volume series, The Effective Interpreting Series and the video series, Interpreting in Medical, Legal, and Insurance Settings, all published by DawnSignPress. Her most recent release is The Effective Interpreting Series:Cognitive Processing in ASL. She is currently developing a multi-media package focusing on fingerspelled word recognition as well as the 8th volume in the EIS, Translating from ASL, both of which will be released in 2012. When she is not working on writing books, traveling, or teaching, she enjoys working in her glass studio and her garden.

Len Roberson, Ph.D., SC:L, CI, CT

Dr. Roberson has been involved in the fields of deaf education and interpreting for 23 years. He is an active researcher, interpreter, and interpreter educator whose passion is to prepare others to be dynamic educators. He received his Ph.D. from Gallaudet University. Dr. Roberson is currently the Dean of the Graduate School at the University of North Florida and Assistant Vice-President of Academic Technology. He is also a tenured Associate Professor in the ASL/English Interpreting graduate program – a program he developed and founded at UNF. Since joining UNF in 1998, Dr. Roberson has received more than 3 million dollars in external funding as the principal investigator for numerous grants.


Dr. Roberson maintains an active scholarly agenda and his research interests include the study of interpreting in legal settings, teacher effectiveness and preparation, and service-learning in interpreter education. Dr. Roberson has presented numerous papers and workshops in North America and abroad. He is co-editor for the Journal of Interpretation published by RID. He has served as Proceedings co-editor for the Conference of Interpreter Trainers for 6 years. He served on RID’s Certification Council and is a subject matter expert for RID’s certification and testing department. He is co-owner of an interpreting agency in northeast Florida through which he interprets primarily in legal settings. Dr. Roberson resides in Jacksonville, Florida with his beautiful wife and seven beautiful children, 4 girls and 3 boys.

Debra Russell, Ph.D., COI, SC:L

Dr. Russell is an ASL-English interpreter, interpreter Educator, and Director of the Western Canadian Centre of Deaf Studies at the University of Alberta, Canada. She current holds the David Peikoff Chair of Deaf Studies. Her interpreting practice spans over thirty years and continues to be community based across a range of settings. Dr. Russell received her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Calgary and a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the University of Alberta. She was a founding member of the Association of Visual Language Interpreters of Canada (AVLIC) and has served in a variety of leadership roles over the organization’s history. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she maintains an active research program, with current projects that focus on interpreting in educational contexts, Deaf interpreters, and legal interpreting.


Dr. Russell is recognized internationally for pioneering efforts in the field of sign language interpretation and adult education. She is extensively published on topics that include comparison of simultaneous and consecutive interpreting, team interpreting, advocacy, ethics, mediated education, and interpreting in legal settings. Her current research projects include a demographic survey of ASL-English interpreters in Canada; an examination of the linguistic access that deaf children have when accessing education that is mediated via sign language interpretation; a survey of best practices of interpreters in legal settings; and the documentation of Ukrainian Sign Language in collaboration with the Institute of Special Pedagogy in Kyiv, Ukraine.She is the author of Interpreting in Legal Contexts, published by Linstok Press in their Dissertation Series. Dr. Russell was elected President of the World Association of Sign Language Interpreters in July 2011. She is also a dedicated student of yoga who loves to travel.

Marty Taylor, Ph.D., CSC, COI

Dr. Taylor is widely known as a talented and innovative educator, consultant, interpreter, and publisher whose work is recognized internationally. She is in demand as a speaker, workshop leader and mentor, and her educational materials are cited by interpreting programs, educators, and interpreter practitioners throughout North America and abroad. Thirty-plus years of dedication to the advancement of sign language interpretation have gained Dr. Taylor the respect of her colleagues, students, and clients. She established an Interpreter Education Program at Grant MacEwan College in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. She operates a publishing company, Interpreting Consolidated, which she created in 1993 to promote excellence within the field of sign language interpreting and provide consultation, evaluation, research, and publishing services to interpreting communities worldwide.


Dr. Taylor is the author of two seminal texts used in Interpreter Education Programs: Interpretation SKILLS: American Sign Language to English and Interpretation SKILLS: English to American Sign Language. Most recently, she is researching and writing on projects related to assessment and evaluation, material and curriculum development, distance learning, and VRS interpreter competencies. Some of her favorite activities include horseback riding on her world travels, enjoying family and friends, and swimming in the ocean.  

1.2 Canvas Collaborate

Each of your courses in Canvas has the capability to use Collaborate, however, not all faculty will use it. Those who do will usually have some ice-breaker sessions to familiarize students with its use. To become familiar with the software, work through the demonstrations in Step 3.

1.3 Delicious

Create a Delicious account to add all the great materials you will have access to during your courses. This is a social bookmarking system that others can access (if you allow them) and you can share your favorite sites with each other...and your bookmarks are always there when using different computers.



1.4 Google Docs & Dropbox

If you are working in a group to produce a document, Google Docs is one of several options that allows you to work together. Maintaining your work in Dropbox allows you to access work from any computer and downloads are free.


Google Docs




1.5 Information Technology Support

UNF offers excellent technical support to its students.  A good rule of thumb is to spend a maximum of 10 minutes trying to solve the problem alone and then call for help. Never hesitate to call the Help Desk (904.620.HELP). Please direct technology questions to the Help Desk, not your course professor.


For additional information on technology for students, please click here.

1.6 OoVoo

This videoconferencing program allows you to have individual or group meetings in ASL. Unlike Skype and some other programs, the signs are clear enough to conduct business because of ooVoo’s high definition capacity. You may download OoVoo at no cost. Full-time faculty members will have the group program for up to twelve people at a time; however, you will not need to pay in order to access these sessions.



1.7 Technology Due Dates

Students are cautioned against waiting until the last minute to submit an online assignment through Canvas. Unless there is a documented Canvas outage notice issued by the University, professors are not obliged to accept late assignments. Due dates typically represent the last moment that an assignment can be submitted before the system blocks submissions. Of course, assignments may be turned in earlier than the deadline.

1.8 Technology Orientation

There are several technology requirements that should be addressed prior to starting in the program. By reviewing these websites and working through the tutorials, you will prepare for the semester before classes actually start. Naturally, an online program requires extensive use of technology. It is recommended that you have an up-to-date computer that is equipped with a camera and microphone. Even if your camera is built into the computer, there are times when it will be necessary for the source text to be recorded instead of you, thus the need for an additional webcam or digital recorder. You will need access to high speed internet on a daily basis and a back-up plan to use a different computer should your system encounter difficulties. All courses use  Canvas  as a central site to keep course documents, conduct discussions, post assignments, turn in assignments, communicate with each other, and maintain the grade book, which is available to you at all times. When you register for a class, you will automatically be put in that course’s Canvas“shell”. Professors decide when to make the course available to students while they are building it, so if you don’t see your course listed in your  Canvas  course list, contact the professor to verify that you are indeed enrolled.


Within  Canvas , some professors will use the virtual classroom,  Canvas  Collaborate. This allows a class to meet synchronously or asynchronously through recorded sessions that students may attend at their own convenience. Collaborate interaction requires use of your camera and microphone and allows faculty and students to interact around the lesson content.


Following admission, all students are assigned an identification number that begins with an “N”. This number and your password are used for all technology services at UNF: to access your accounts in MyWings, login to  Canvas , and login to the library from a remote site. When MyWings is “down” or there is maintenance on the system, you probably will not be able to access  Canvas  or email through MyWings; however, you may enter from and respectively.

1.9 Technology Training Sessions

During the first two weeks of the semester, the Help Desk provides tutorial sessions that can help you.


To access additional information on training sessions (including a current schedule), please click here.

1.10 YouTube

All students should have a YouTube account and become familiar with how to upload and share a private video.  Students are not required to post public videos at any time.


There are numerous guides available from Google.  Below is a suggested user guide.


YouTube User Guide