A Linguistic & Semantic Tune-up for Interpreters: Does ORANGE-EYES mean "amazing"?

Illustrated image of gears


Start: March 21, 2015 at 9:00 AM
End: March 21, 2015 at 5:30 PM


University of Southern Maine Wishcamper Center, Shepard-Lee Auditorium
34 Bedford Street, Portland, Maine. 04101

Workshop description

View David describing the workshop in ASL.

Hearing accent: signing that marks people as second-language learners of American Sign Language. Hearing accent can affect not only the comprehension of a message being delivered in ASL, but also perceptions of interpreters as cultural outsiders. Interpreters should strive for natural-looking language in ASL, but what makes people look more or less native?

Through the use of selected texts, this workshop will address common linguistic and semantic issues that challenge interpreters from production errors (specifically hand shape and movement parameters) to sign usage notes (denotative and connotative meanings of selected ASL vocabulary) including the usage of orange-eyes (“to be shocked,” an ASL verb) to mean “amazing” (an English adjective).

Whether newer or veteran in the field, this workshop can reinforce how you already use ASL while also conveying new information about the language to help you tune up your interpreting work!

After taking this workshop, participants will be able to…

  • Correctly produce at least five commonly misarticulated signs
  • Demonstrate semantic awareness of at least ten commonly misused ASL signs
  • Describe the role of finger wiggle in ASL signs


Saturday March 21, 2015, 9:00AM–5:30 PM
(1.5 hour lunch on your own)

Target audience

Interpreters, interpreting students, and advanced ASL students (Deaf, hearing, coda) interested in improving their ASL.

Presentation language

This workshop will be presented in ASL with no English interpretation.

Continuing education

This workshop is approved for 0.7 RID Professional Studies CEUs requiring some content pre-knowledge.


Deadline: To be ensure adequate workshop materials, registrations must be received by Friday, March 6, 2015. On-site registration will be accepted, but materials are not guaranteed.

ADA accommodations

Accessibility requests must be submitted by March 1, 2015.

Cancellation policy

No refunds will be issued after February 20, 2015.


Nick Dionne or Alyssa Gagnon, meridsec@gmail.com


MeRID members: $100.00 (Saturday), $200.00 (full weekend)
Students: $100.00 (Saturday), $200.00 (full weekend)
Non-members: $120.00 (Saturday), $250.00 (full weekend)

See more events