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ASL/English Interpreting Undergraduate Student Handbook

Program Welcome

Dear Students,

 Congratulations on your admission to the University of North Florida’s ASL/English Interpreting Program! We are delighted you selected UNF and we hope the program offers the foundation you seek in your interpreting career. Our interpreting programs are based upon the 2014 Interpreter Education Standards set forth by the Commission on Collegiate Interpreter Education (CCIE), and we were accredited by CCIE in 2016 (one of only a select number of BA/BS degree programs in the country).

In 2007, a Bachelor of Science degree was implemented for students who graduated from one of Florida’s five, associate-level interpreting programs and who aspired to national certification. Our program started by offering the final two years of the bachelor’s degree in what is called a ‘2 + 2’ or ‘AS to BS Concentration’. UNF strives to deliver a curriculum that does not overlap course content studied at the associate level.

In Spring 2015, we started a four-year BS degree concentration: Community Interpreting (120 credit hours). The new concentration allows students to enter the program as freshmen and complete the degree in its entirety at UNF. The last two years of this concentration match the curriculum in the AS to BS concentration, so students from both programs complete the degree together. Effective spring 2016, all students seeking to enter the final 48 credit hours must pass the Limited Access Screening for ASL, English, and Cognitive Processing competencies.  In Fall 2022, we launched a new Educational Interpreting concentration in both the undergraduate and graduate degrees.

In 2007, we received multiple requests for a master’s degree that was accessible for students at a distance. In response to the demand, we developed a trial master’s concentration under an existing M.Ed. degree in Special Education. This program was so successful for students in Florida and out of state, that the Board of Trustees approved a standalone Master of Science: ASL/English Interpreting degree in 2012. Under this degree, there are three concentrations: General Practitioner, Interpreting Pedagogy, and Educational Interpreting.

Students who graduate with UNF’s BS degree in Interpreting can apply to the General Practitioner concentration of the master’s degree. In 2012, UNF broke ground with the Interpreting Pedagogy concentration.  This program prepares interpreter educators. I am honored to serve as Program Director of these vibrant and growing programs. I encourage you to contact me with any questions, concerns, or suggestions as you work your way through the program. As we always say, “UNF… no one like you; no place like this!”

Warm regards,

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

Professor and Program Director, ASL/English Interpreting

Program Mission, and Values

The mission of the BS Program is to prepare entry-level practitioners who are capable of managing the intercultural demands and complex cognitive tasks for conveying functionally equivalent messages between American Sign Language and English.


 Our goal is to provide a comprehensive curriculum within an innovative program design to produce highly qualified interpreters who are ready to span the readiness to work gap and achieve national certification. We aspire to prepare students who consistently demonstrate interpersonal skills that reflect unconditional positive regard for all participants in the interpreting process and professional dispositions that embrace diversity, respect, equity, and equality of opportunity among the diverse language and cultural groups of the community.


 Our philosophy is that students will flourish when provided with an experiential, service-learning environment that encourages alliance with Deaf community partners and an evidence-based curriculum that is in accordance with current spoken and signed language research. We recognize the importance of faculty members being actively engaged in applied interpreting research and encouraging students to become consumers of research to inform their skill development. One-on-one mentorship, strong peer support networks, and a spiraling curriculum that builds upon previously developed interpreting skills to achieve mastery are the foundations of our program. We believe in emphasizing Academic Language (ASL and written and spoken English) within the program and hold high expectations for our students’ continued progress toward national certification. First and foremost, the curricular and extracurricular aspects of our program emphasize a sociolinguistic perspective of Deaf and hearing communities through advanced ASL skill development, consecutive and simultaneous interpreting skill acquisition, and linguistic-cultural competency.

 Core Values

 The program is based on core values of ethical reasoning and decision-making, critical thinking, and Deaf community alliance. Program faculty members are committed to conducting and incorporating research in interpreting and interpreter education, receiving ongoing training on best practices in distance learning, and infusing the standards outlined by the Commission on Collegiate Interpreter Education (CCIE).

Program Expectations


 This section serves as a program disclaimer regarding students who work as interpreters while still in training. UNF’s Interpreter Education Program (IEP) recognizes that many, if not all, students must have outside employment to afford the expense of attending school and managing their household expenses. However, we do not support or condone students working unsupervised as interpreters while they are still in school and before they obtain national certification. While some school districts, agencies, and private entities will hire students to work as interpreters without the mentorship of certified interpreters, the IEP strongly discourages this practice.

 Two of the most common venues where people who are not certified are used include education and medical settings. The volatility of healthcare interpreting should cause students to be extremely cautious when accepting any employment in this setting, no matter how harmless an appointment may appear at the onset. Medical interpreting quickly transforms into legal interpreting, according to Sharon Caserta, SC:L Esq., of Morgan and Morgan (see Wessling & Shaw, 2014 about specialized interpreter preparation and Caserta’s caveat to interpreters and referral agencies). Those who perform interpreting tasks without evidence of qualification are liable for the outcomes and may be called to justify their actions and verify qualifications in court.

 Educational settings are critical for making long-term impact on the Deaf community. Oftentimes, classroom interpreters are the only language models for children during critical development stages in language, science, and mathematics. Unqualified signers who put themselves in the role of interpreters, regardless of the setting, share the responsibility for the outcomes, and the IEP, in an effort to protect you and the Deaf community from undesirable outcomes, requests that you decline offers to work as interpreters (without supervision) while you are in the program.


Upon admission to the final two years of the Interpreting Program, students sign a commitment statement (see Appendix A). Please read this carefully as you will be held to the standards it contains.

 Growth Mindset and Disposition

(adapted from Shaw, 2013, Service Learning in Interpreter Education)

 According to Dweck (2007), a Stanford University researcher and psychologist, there are two types of mindset: a fixed mindset, which holds to the belief that personal qualities are carved in stone or unchangeable, and a growth mindset, which believes that one’s own efforts can positively or negatively affect change in the person’s basic qualities, thus unlocking potential. “The passion for stretching yourself and sticking to it, even (or especially) when it’s not going well, is the hallmark of the growth mindset. This is the mindset that allows people to thrive during some of the most challenging times in their lives” (p. 7).

A growth mindset makes it possible to face uncertainty with a sense of adventure and learn from the experience. This is definitely the mindset needed to pursue a BS degree in Interpreting at UNF. We tend to be extremely progressive in program delivery methods, curriculum development, mentorship opportunities, and study abroad experiences. If students with growth mindsets thrive amidst challenging situations, then the opposite must be true of individuals with fixed mindsets. This means that a student with a fixed mindset would view new approaches that are quite different from prior experience as dreadfully unwelcome challenges, since they do not appear to be manageable or achievable. Interestingly, Dweck discovered in her studies that people whose mindsets are fixed are actually very poor at rating their own abilities to achieve, while people with growth mindsets are more oriented toward learning and can accurately assess their abilities to cope and function well.

Dweck learned from brain wave studies that when people with fixed mindsets received feedback on their ability to answer hard questions, they were attentive only to information about whether they had answered right or wrong. When they received feedback about how to help them learn after they got an answer wrong, their brain waves indicated a loss in interest. “Only people with a growth mindset paid close attention to information that could stretch their knowledge. Only for them was learning a priority” (p. 18). Personally, thriving in the IEP is important, not only because there are grades attached to courses, but more so because your future as an ethical and skilled interpreter depends upon it!

Of all the studies that Dweck conducted on mindset, there is one series of studies that stands out above the others as applicable to interpreting students. This was a study about the internal monologue that occurs inside the mind when processing incoming information. She and her colleagues discovered that the fixed mindset caused people to organize bits of new information according to a positive or negative labeling system. In other words, these participants analyzed and categorized information according to good information or bad information, thus producing positive or negative self-talk. Interpreting students are no strangers to negative self-talk, as it is probably something they have battled in their developmental stages of language or interpreting skill acquisition. If they experienced it in other areas of their learning and have slipped into this labeling habit, they can be helped to recognize that it is a barrier for making progress.

If the description above is true of yourself, make a concentrated effort to channel your internal monologues toward the growth mindset, and then experiences can be meaningful in a positive way. Dweck emphasizes that mindset is a choice and changing one’s mindset can only occur through concentrated effort. Shifting mindset from fixed to growth is not only possible; it is compulsory if students are going to maximize learning in the IEP.

Attendance and Punctuality

 While in the program, students are expected to exhibit professional behaviors that include punctuality for class and extracurricular activities.

Attendance at all weekend course meetings is required (synchronous online or face-to-face). This includes all sessions for all days.  Each missed day will result in one letter grade reduction for the final course grade. Weekend course meetings rely heavily upon experiential learning that cannot be replicated outside the classroom. For hybrid courses, these meetings account for a significant proportion of classroom contact hours. Missing just one class session is the equivalent of missing several weeks of classes in a traditional face-to-face course.

In the event of an emergency that prohibits attendance, students should communicate directly with the professor and provide appropriate documentation (hospitalization record, funeral details, etc.). Missed classes cannot be made up and absences will result in final letter grade reduction. If a student knows in advance that an onsite cannot be attended, the class should be delayed until attendance is guaranteed. Tentative program schedules are made four months in advance and can be obtained from the program director at any time for planning purposes. Until schedules ‘go live’ on the UNF website (at least two months before classes begin), tentative schedules are subject to change.


 Students are expected to project a professional image in all program-related activities. In interpreting skills classes, students should remove facial and tongue piercings, cover upper body tattoos, and dress conservatively (no cleavage) in solid colors that contrast skin tone. A more detailed dress code is available for students taking Practicum. ‘Interpreting for Persons who are DeafBlind’ will require specific clothing unique to this setting. Students should attend all onsite classes in professional attire that would be worn on actual interpreting assignments.

 Communication and Social Media

 The following guidelines relate to communicating in an appropriate, ethical, and professional manner:

 Use academic language in all communication with faculty. This involves opening your message with a greeting, writing complete sentences, spelling accurately, and closing with a salutation. Refer to professors by professional title (see syllabus for individual preferences). 

  • Use respectful language in all communication. Content of an email should be carefully written for anyone to see. Email is not private.
  • Arrange a private videoconference or phone call during your professor’s office hours if you need individual assistance.
  • Use discussion forums in Canvas for general issues that are not time-specific. If you need an immediate response to a problem, email your professor with an SOS in the subject line. This helps prioritize your message.
  • When using social media for academic, professional, or personal purposes, never post text, photos, or videos that you would not want everyone to see. Even if you use privacy settings, posts are easily shared beyond your social circles or captured with screen shots and photos. As a student, you are establishing your professional image while you are in the program. Using social media as a pre-professional comes with a great responsibility. Carelessness or misuse can result in misunderstandings and mistrust from academic and professional peers. Once your reputation is damaged in this way, it can be difficult to restore.
  • Consulting peers first when you have a question is a good idea, but seeking immediate clarification from the professor is recommended.
  • Follow these guidelines for receiving assistance from the right person:
    • Questions and concerns about a class: Email the professor.
    • Questions or concerns about the program, class schedule, or progress in the program: Email Dr. Roberson, program director, at
    • Problems accessing Canvas or technology problems: Contact the Help Desk (904.620.HELP; Difficulty locating library resources: Contact a reference librarian from the UNF homepage.

 Time Management

 Time management and organization are critical skills that must be mastered in the early weeks of the program. Upon receiving the course syllabus for each class, students should create a master calendar and strive to submit assignments prior to the deadlines. For every credit hour you take, you can expect to study three hours. This guideline means for a three-credit-hour course, you should budget nine hours of study time per week for that course.


There are several technology requirements that should be addressed prior to starting the program. By reviewing these websites and working through the tutorials, you will prepare for the semester before classes actually start and determine your own readiness for blended and online learning.


All programs require students to have an up-to-date computer that is equipped with a web camera and microphone. Students are required to have regular access to a hard-wired Internet connection or a high-speed Internet connection (recognizing that some assignments may require a hard-wired connection in order to view or record sign language videos with sufficient clarity for comprehension). Microsoft Office (Word) is needed for submitting assignments online. Although not required, it is helpful to have a laptop for onsite course meetings. For specific information about recommended hardware and software for distance learning courses, refer to the Technology for Students website.

Course Delivery

Course delivery varies according to class content. Online classes and those with online components (hybrid or blended courses) are NOT the equivalent of Independent Studies. Online and hybrid courses are structured, interactive, and organized to maximize student learning, using Canvas as a central site to keep course documents, conduct discussions, turn in assignments, communicate with each other, and maintain the grade book, which is available to students at all times.

Canvas and MyWings

Canvas is the learning management system used at UNF. Upon application to UNF, all students are assigned an identification number that begins with an “N”. This number and your password are used to access technology services at UNF, including your account in MyWings, your Canvas account, and remote library access. When MyWings is “down” or there is maintenance on the system, you probably will not be able to access Canvas or email through MyWings.

When you register for a class, you will automatically be put in that course’s Canvas “shell.” Professors decide when to make the course shell available to students while they are building it, so it may not be available on the first day of the semester. You can verify your registration status in MyWings. If you do not see your course listed in the Canvas course list after the first week of class, contact the professor.

Class Technology and Due Dates

Students are cautioned against waiting until the last minute to submit an assignment through Canvas. Unless there is a documented Canvas outage notice issued by the University, professors are not obligated 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. All times follow Eastern Standard Time unless otherwise noted.

Supporting Websites

The following websites will be useful for you as you get started in the program and for future reference should you experience any technical difficulties.


If you have questions about Canvas features, quizzes, discussion boards, or assignments, refer to the Canvas Student Support page.This website provides instructions, tutorials, screen shots, and guides for commonly used features. You can also enroll in a Canvas training course to give you practice navigating a course in Canvas, SOLO:  Student Online Learning Orientation.

 Information Technology

The ITS website provides information for students about Canvas, Ospreys email, connecting to the Internet, passwords, and much more.

 A good ‘rule of thumb’ is to spend a maximum of 10 minutes trying to solve a technology-related problem alone, and then call for help. Never hesitate to call the Help Desk (904.620.HELP) or email from your UNF email account. Please direct technology questions to the Help Desk and not the professor.


Students will use GoReact for recording and uploading interpreting assignments and receiving feedback on videos in many of the courses. A small fee is charged for a GoReact subscription in each class or students may purchase a 5-year block membership that is good for an unlimited number of classes. The GoReact Help Desk provides a Getting Started Guide, a Video Recording Checklist, and information on troubleshooting recording issues.


Zoom is a video-conferencing tool that may be used by instructors for one-on-one, small group, or whole class synchronous video discussions.  Students have access to a free, unlimited Zoom account using their UNF credentials.

 Using Technology During Class

Some professors do not allow the use of technology (phones, tablets, computers) during class. If you are unsure about the policy, review the syllabus and ask the professor before class begins. Do not photograph or audio/video record a class session without prior permission.

Program Policies

Selective Admissions

Effective spring 2016, all students transferring to UNF (AS-BS) or entering the final two years (upper-level 48 hours) must successfully complete the Admissions Screening. The screening involves assessment of ASL conversational skills, extemporaneous ASL summarizing, English summarizing, paraphrasing, and gist identification. Cognitive processing skills and the ability to analyze source texts for purpose and meaning are assessed in the Admissions Screening, as are written and spoken English competencies. The Selective Admissions screening does not screen for interpreting skills; rather, it assesses the fundamental linguistic, cultural, and cognition foundations needed to learn the interpreting process. To be eligible for Selective Admissions Screening, students must have a 2.75 GPA and a 'B' or higher in Introduction to Interpreting, ENC 1101, ASL I, and ASL II.  Students must also complete all of the pre-interpreting courses or have an AA or AS degree in interpreting.  The program can admit up to 30 students each fall, and admission is competitive.


Admission to the final two years of the Interpreting Program is dependent upon a cumulative GPA of 2.75. This GPA must be maintained throughout the program, and students who fall below this GPA risk program removal or inability to take Practicum.


Once admitted to the program, new students are invited to attend Interpreter Education Program Orientation, usually held in conjunction with the first weekend of classes. Orientation introduces students to faculty, staff, and administration and prepares them for classes and overall program success. Students receive the resources they need to be successful in the program and sign a commitment statement (see Appendix A). During Orientation, faculty members welcome the opportunity to meet with students individually. Always feel free to contact your professors for individual appointments.

Language of Instruction

In the final two years of the program, when the AS to BS and Community Interpreting programs merge, all faculty use American Sign Language as the formal language of instruction for online and face-to-face content delivery.


The grading scale used in the Interpreting program courses follows the scale:

A = 93 – 100 | B = 85 – 92 | C = 77 – 84 | D = 69 – 76 | F = < 69

A grade of ‘C’ or better is required in all courses, except for Introduction to Interpreting, ENC 1101, ASL 1, and ASL II, which requires a ‘B’ or better to enter the program. Courses with a grade less than ‘C’ must be repeated, and courses may be repeated only once.

Professors will contact students who are making unsatisfactory progress at midterm, and a plan of action will be discussed. Students should be aware of the last day to withdraw from courses, and if they are not passing a course at midterm, consider withdrawing before the failing grade appears on the transcript. Never drop a course without first consulting with your program advisor.

An Incomplete may be assigned when a student experiences an emergency disruption toward the end of the semester. The professor determines when an Incomplete is appropriate and develops a contract for course completion. Failure to comply with the Incomplete Contract results in the ‘I’ automatically rolling to an ‘F’. The program abides by university policy that states students must have made satisfactory progress in a majority of assignments at the time that extenuating circumstances caused the student to fall behind in assignments. The decision to assign an ‘I’ rests on the faculty member, who determines if satisfactory progress was being made prior to the end of semester.

Each professor has the discretion to use + or – when grades are borderline. There is no such grade as an A+. See the UNF Student Handbook for more information about failing grades, Incomplete, and the use of + or –.

Course Sequence

Courses are delivered in a spiraling sequence that allows students to build interpreting skills and knowledge in a systematic and logical fashion. Upper-level courses are offered once a year. Skill-development courses have prerequisites, so careful planning is needed if students decide to attend part-time. Although the program allows part-time attendance, taking less than the full load offered each semester puts students at risk for falling behind. Part-time attendance requires discussion and planning with your program advisor prior to making changes to your course schedule.  

Field Experience and Practicum

The accreditation standards on which the UNF Interpreting programs are built (see Appendix B for CCIE standards related to field experience and practicum) specify a total of 300 field experience hours, with 200 of those occurring during the capstone class, Practicum and Portfolio Presentation. Students who transfer to UNF without 100 observation hours will be required to take INT 2303 Interpreting Field Experience to help facilitate accumulation of observation hours.  This course requires 60 hours of field-based experiences, which means you must be able to complete the experiences during the semester which may require time off of work, travel to and from observation sites, and completion of a background check. Practicum involves nine months of pre-planning for the program’s last semester, and students are responsible for identifying placement options that meet their own time and travel specifications. No student can graduate from the program without the 300 field experience hours required by CCIE.

Practicum placements may necessitate short-term relocation or employment suspension/reduction in order to satisfy the site’s availability and capacity to provide sufficient hours. CCIE Standards stipulate that practicum placement be with a nationally certified (NAD-RID, AVLIC/CASLI) interpreter, and this requirement does not include EIPA-rated interpreters, regardless of level. UNF is not responsible for students who disrupt placements or who are not participating in the placement process in the months preceding the semester in which they are scheduled to graduate. If a student is registered for Practicum and approaches midterm without submitting documentation of a steady accumulation of hours, he or she may not be eligible for an Incomplete at the end of the semester. Failure to organize a Practicum placement that is feasible may result in failure to complete the interpreting program. Please note that students are ultimately responsible for identifying their own feasible practicum placements that meet all criteria for practicum placement sites. IEP faculty will support and facilitate final placements once the student identifies the feasible options.

Academic Advising

General Education Core Advising
The Office of Academic Support and Information Services (OASIS) in the College of Education and Human Services advises students only about the general education core to satisfy BS degree requirements at UNF. Our designated advisor within OASIS is Erica Huges ( and if she is not available, the Director is Dr. Cathy O’Farrell ( Transferring to UNF with an Associate of Arts degree from a Florida-based institution guarantees that all general education core requirements are met. Transferring with an Associate of Science or Associate of Applied Science, but without the Associate of Arts, means the student must take UNF’s core courses, which may differ from those required at the student’s prior institution. This may also be true for students transferring from out of state.

All students must make an appointment with Ms. Hughes during their first semester to plan for satisfying the general education core, Gordon Rule, and Summer Residency policy. All students must meet with Ms. Hughes to conduct a degree audit to ensure all university requirements have been met.

Interpreting Program Advising

All advising about program issues (interpreting-related coursework) is provided from within the program. You will meet with your program advisor during registration periods to determine appropriate course placement. Prior to registration each semester, you are required to meet with Ms. Hughes in OASIS.  Please notify your advisor before changing your class schedule, dropping a course, or withdrawing from the program. Unless otherwise designated, the program advisor is the program director.


Current students are eligible for early registration at the end of each semester. Other students are given a registration ‘ticket’ that indicates when registration opens. All classes within the Interpreter Education Program at the junior and senior level are restricted to program majors who were admitted via Limited Access Screening. Students must register themselves for their classes (faculty cannot register students). If you attempt to register and receive an error message of any kind, please complete the registration override request form in myWings and the college advisors will review the request and provide an override if appropriate.

Program Progress and Internship

 Good standing in the program means maintaining a GPA of 2.75. Course failure or falling below the required GPA may result in program suspension or expulsion. Courses are offered once a year. Students in good standing are eligible for reduced membership rates with RID [request a ‘letter of good standing and current enrollment’ from the Program Director]. Practicum (also called Internship) is the capstone experience that requires successful completion of all requisite courses. A Notice of Intent is due at the end of the Spring term in your junior year, and applications for practicum placement are due September 1 prior to the semester of the capstone practicum course. Students are responsible for identifying and securing an appropriate placement with a qualified/approved site based on professional goals. Qualified practicum sites will have a certified interpreter who monitors student progress and an approved affiliation agreement with UNF in place prior to the start of the practicum.  Students may make inquiries about internship opportunities and requirements but should never attempt to negotiate a placement. Internship placements will be finalized by the faculty only. Internship placements that are disrupted due to student misconduct will result in a failing grade. Internship placements, requirements, cooperative agreements, and conduct rules are located in the Practicum Handbook.

 You will register for the Practicum class only AFTER you have a confirmed placement for practicum. 

 NOTE: Transfer students who do not have 100 hours of previous field experience will take the Interpreting Field Experience course (60 hours) and complete additional outside observations to satisfy the deficiency. Documentation of 100 hours of observations should be submitted prior to the last semester of the program. With program permission, observation hours may be obtained during the final semester as part of Practicum.

Assignments Retention

Students should maintain a file on their own hard drives that contains all assignments submitted during the program. Never delete assignment files. These files will allow you to locate the necessary artifacts as needed throughout your time in the program.  Students are responsible for keeping their work in a secure, digital location for easy access in case of an emergency or grade appeal (Dropbox, iCloud, flash drive, external drive).

Program Advisory Committee

The Interpreter Education Program relies heavily on the input of the Program Steering/Advisory Committee to ensure it is meeting community needs and remains current with evidence-based practices for preparing interpreters. Our program deeply values the input and guidance of the Deaf and DeafBlind communities and always seeks to have representatives from these communities be the majority of our program steering/advisory committee.  In addition to the steering committee, students and alumni receive regular surveys to gather anonymous data that will inform program leaders about areas of improvement that need to be addressed. The program uses survey data, ISQ results, student correspondence, and any other form of feedback to keep the program growing and changing for the better. Students and community members are encouraged to put feedback in writing to the Program Director or Department Chair.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What does the program cost?

See the university tuition chart.

 Can I attend if I live outside of Florida?

Yes, but…the Community Interpreting concentration requires some face-to-face attendance at UNF during the first two years, particularly for language courses. You may attend the AS to BS concentration if you live outside of Florida, but you will need to attend the monthly onsite classes and pay out-of-state tuition. Residency, for the purposes of in-state tuition, is established by living in Florida for one year without attending any school within the state, and evidence of this will be provided to the Admissions office. Contact One Stop Student Services for additional information about residency.

 How is the program delivered?

The last two years are delivered as hybrid, or blended, classes. This means students attend class in Jacksonville one weekend per month (typically, Friday through Sunday), and the rest of the coursework is online with weekly lessons, videoconference sessions, assignments, and activities. Depending on the course content, the amount of face-to-face class time is carefully determined using a formula. Classes that are primarily skills-based have a larger segment of the course face-to-face (e.g., Advanced ASL Proficiency, Advanced ASL Classifiers for Interpreters, Interpreting Skill Development I-IV), while courses that are knowledge or practice-based are at least 80% online (e.g., Applied Ethics, Technology and Interpreting). 

 Attendance at all weekend course meetings is required (synchronous online or face-to-face). This includes all sessions for all days.  Each missed day will result in one letter grade reduction for the final course grade.

 Can I attend part-time?

Yes, but courses are offered only once a year. If you must attend part-time, ask your program advisor or the Program Director to advise you on which courses you should take first to make sure you meet the prerequisites each semester.

Do you recommend students get involved with the Deaf community?

Yes! Even after graduation and throughout your career, involvement as an ally in the Deaf community is necessary and expected.

 How long will it take me to complete the program?

If you take all classes as they are offered, maintain a 2.75 GPA, and pass each class with a ‘C’ or better, you will graduate in four years (Community Interpreting) or two years (transfer students).

 Can I start the program in the spring semester?

No. The program follows a cohort model that requires students to start in the fall. Students entering the final 48 credit hours of the program will need to take and pass a Limited Access Screening, which is only offered at the end of the spring semester.

Is UNF’s program accredited?

Yes! The ASL/English undergraduate interpreting program at UNF received accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Interpreter Education (CCIE) In February 2016.


Please direct general questions about the program to Dr. Roberson, program director, at

Each faculty member’s contact preferences are located in the course syllabus. On weekdays (M-F), you may expect a response to emails within 48 hours. If you do not receive a reply, please re-send your message. Students are responsible for checking UNF email on a regular basis (not the Inbox in Canvas). This is how the university, Canvas course lists, and your professors stay in contact with you. It is possible to have UNF email pushed to your preferred email account by making this change in MyWings; however, UNF does not guarantee that all messages will arrive at a secondary account. It is important to keep all personal information up-to-date within MyWings.


Dweck, D. (2007). Mindset: The new psychology of success. Random House.

Shaw, S. (2013). Service learning in interpreter education: Strategies for extending student involvement in the Deaf community. Gallaudet University Press.

Wessling, D., & Shaw, S. (2014). Persistent emotions and video relay service interpreters. Journal of Interpretation, 23(1), Article 6. Retrieved from

Commitment Statement

The following is a sample of the program commitment statement each student entering the major must sign and agree to adhere to during the program.

ASL - English Interpreting Program

Program Commitment Statement

 Developing a student’s skills and knowledge base to (1) think critically, (2) demonstrate linguistic and cultural readiness, and (3) build interpreting expertise is a daunting, but exciting process. The UNF faculty members commit to guiding you in your knowledge and skills development throughout the program while honoring you as a valuable individual with unique professional goals. We encourage a supportive relationship between students, students and faculty, and students and members of the Deaf and interpreting communities based on mutual respect, support and professionalism.

In the spirit of mutual respect and professionalism, the following agreements are established:


  • I will respect the different skill levels of my classmates by fostering an atmosphere of support through kind, positive, and constructive peer engagement.
  • I will communicate frequently with my peers, providing constructive & timely peer feedback, making substantial contributions, and sharing the workload equally during group projects.
  • I will ensure I have all of the necessary technology to succeed in the program, and I will learn how to use it effectively. If I have technology questions, I will seek out the answers.
  • I will be involved in Deaf community activities for a minimum of 10 hours a month.
  • I will be open minded about diversity and respectful of others’ opinions.
  • I will present myself professionally at onsite class meetings both in attire and behavior.

Professional attire refers to wearing clothing that is the correct size. Students should wear knee-length or longer skirts/nice slacks and shirts that do not show cleavage or chest hair. They should cover visible tattoos and remove industrial piercings. Jewelry should be removed when interpreting for DeafBlind individuals. Professional behavior includes visual attention to the speaker/signer and active listening.

  • I will take responsibility for completing assignments by the due dates.
  • I will take responsibility for my own success or failure, and I will be personally accountable for my progress through the program.
  • I will remediate any areas of deficiency that are necessary for success in the program (language and study, cultural competence, time management).
  • I will set up a routine study time to work on class assignments.
  • I will prioritize school over employment, social commitments, and other outside activities.
  • I will take action and call or email my instructor when I need help or am confused.
  • I will participate in class and online discussions, raise questions, make comments and display an open, non-judgmental attitude toward others by making eye contact and demonstrating visual attending behaviors.
  • I understand that I must maintain a 2.75 GPA while in the ASL/English Interpreting Program. Courses with a grade below a C must be repeated. Courses may only be repeated ONE time.
  • I understand that attendance at all onsite weekend sessions is mandatory and that missed sessions cannot be made up. I also understand that each day/session missed will result in the final grade being reduced by one letter grade (per absence).
  • I will, by the end of the first semester in the program, meet with my Academic Advisor,  to confirm that I have:
    • satisfied the general education core requirements prior to entering the program, OR
    • developed a plan with the Academic Advisor to complete my core requirements prior to my final semester in the program
  • I will meet with my Academic Advisor each semester, prior to registration for the next term.


  • We will listen to your questions, comments and concerns without negative judgment in order to understand your perspective and support your personal and professional growth.
  • We will provide complete instructions for assignments and detailed schedules for courses so you may manage your time wisely.
  • We will support you in your skill and knowledge development throughout the program by providing feedback on assignments.
  • We will respond to email messages within 48 hours (M-F).
  • As needed, we will refer you to appropriate language models, encourage mentoring relationships, and make you aware of cultural interactions that will provide you with a well-rounded education.
  • We understand that you are a unique and valuable individual and we will work with you on your individual academic and professional goals.

 Student Commitment and Acknowledgements

 I commit to the expectations in this document. I have reviewed the Program of Study for my concentration and understand courses are offered once a year on a schedule. I understand that attendance at all onsite weekend sessions is mandatory and that missed sessions cannot be made up. I also understand that each day/session missed will result in the final grade being reduced by one letter grade (per absence). 

 I acknowledge the field experience hours needed to complete the program (300 total) and understand that if I transferred here without a minimum of 100 observation hours, I may be required to take INT2303 Field Experiences, which requires field experience. 

I acknowledge that I have received a copy of the program handbook.

 Student Signature: ______________________________ Date: ______________