25-27 November, 2011 - ESI course

On the 25-27 November 2011, a pilot course on interpreting between sign languages realised as a part of the international project called Euro Sign Interpreter took place in Warsaw. The course organiser, Section for Sign Linguistics, represented the University of Warsaw — one of the four partners to the project. The course was attended by 23 participants from four countries: England, Germany, Czech Republic and Poland. Except for one participant, everyone was Deaf. The course was held in International Sign (IS) by two Deaf trainers from Germany and Czech Republic.

The course programme included theory and practice. Participants had an opportunity to meet colleague interpreters from different countries, share observations and experience. Representatives of each country described the situation of sign language, interpreting and the Deaf community they experience in their part of Europe. They compared interpreting practices and opportunities to work as an interpreter available to Deaf people in their respective countries. During the course, participants analysed texts interpreted into their national sign languages by interpreters of foreign origin, discussed issues of interpreter ethics and team work.

Despite the course lasting only three days, it was very intensive. Participants actively involved in exchange of knowledge and experience, they struggled to find solutions to some pertinent questions, and willingly followed the instructions given by the trainers. When the classes were over, the discussions continued during common evening meals. The Euro Sign Interpreter pilot course had been the first of its kind in Poland and maybe even in Europe. It was highly interesting in terms of information presented but also from both linguistic and cultural point of view.