Building ASL Interpreting and Translation Skills: Narratives for Practice (with DVD) | Book Recommendation

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Building ASL Interpreting and Translation Skills: Narratives for Practice (with DVD)

Written in a workbook fashion and designed as a teaching / learning vehicle, Building ASL Interpreting and Translation Skills is for students taking courses in American Sign Language (levels I, II or III), as well as students enrolled in interpreting programs. The written English narratives are designed for translation, interpreting and transliterating with over 80 examples on the companion DVD signed by both native Deaf individuals and nationally certified interpreters.

The book is divided into four parts.

Part I

The first part of the text consists of 24 chapters that provide readers with an overview of a variety of ASL grammatical features. Each chapter includes an example glossed into ASL to provide students with a model for translation, each of which are signed on the accompanying DVD, followed by narratives for student practice that gradually increase in length and difficulty.

Part II

The second part of the text consists of 20 chapters covering additional grammatical features. The selections become increasingly longer in length. Selections in the first several chapters of Part II are also signed by a Deaf individual on the companion DVD. As the selections become longer, a nationally certified interpreter interprets selected narratives modeling the ASL principle described in the chapter.

Part III

The third part of the text is devoted to exercises that focus on building automaticity when confronting multiple meaning words, idioms, and college level vocabulary. These selections are longer in length and are designed to provide interpreters with source material that covers a wide variety of topics.

Part IV

The fourth part of the text includes narratives, lectures, and passages from texts that might be read in a high school or college class.


  • Part I & Part II include information on ASL grammatical features and provides readers with examples of how to gloss the selections. These examples are also demonstrated on the accompanying DVD as a visual aid to help future interpreters.
  • Readers are taught how to work with multiple meaning words, idioms, and are provided with vocabulary building exercises
  • The workbook design allows students opportunity to compare what their written responses to the exercises with what they see on the accompanying DVD.
  • Enclosed DVD allows students to see some of the narratives signed and interpreted and provides students with visual examples and role models of what the ASL principles look in action.

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