Sign-language Interpreters

Request Interpreting Services

If you need interpreting services for classes, tell your DRC Coordinator. Turn in your registration for classes to the DRC office by the priority registration date. Immediately notify the office of any changes in your schedule. Late notification of changes in a student’s schedule or late registration may result in delayed provision of interpreter services. 

Interpreters at NIU use Conceptually Accurate Signed English with simultaneous lip movements. ASL, oral or tactile interpreting, and cued speech may be available upon request.

To request an interpreter for anything other than regularly scheduled class time (meeting, field trip, counseling, etc.), complete an Interpreter Request Form or call 753-6515 as early as possible. At least 48 hours notice is recommended. Any off-campus interpreter requests should be turned in at least one week in advance.

These additional requests will be covered on a first come/first served basis, depending on interpreter availability and completeness of information. If the request cannot be filled, effort will be made to notify you ahead of time.

Expectations for Students

If you will miss a class

If you will not attend a class or assignment, call the DRC Office at 815-753-6515 or 815-753-1303 no later than 7:00 am. for 8:00 and 9:00 am classes. For 10:00 am or later classes, call the DRC office at least 2 hours before the beginning of the class. You must call, even if there are others in the class using interpreters.

If you do not show up for a class or assignment two times without advance notice, interpreter services will be suspended for that class until you have a meeting with DRC interpreting services. After this meeting, interpreter services will resume.

The third no-show for that class will result in cancellation of interpreter services for that class. To get interpreters for future sessions of that class, you must schedule another meeting with interpreting services to review policy. From that point on, turn in a "Service Request Form" for each session. The form should be turned in between 8:00 am and 12:00 noon the day before the class or as arranged with the DRC. Interpreters will be assigned based on availability.

If you will be late

The interpreter will wait for ten minutes. If you know you may be late, call 815-753-6515.

During class

  • Direct questions to the instructor.
  • Avoid having personal conversations with the interpreter.
  • Allow interpreters to take a break during breaktime.
  • If you are giving a presentation or speech in class, and want the interpreter to voice interpret, it is recommended that you meet with the interpreter in advance. Interpreters have scheduled office time for this purpose.
  • You and the interpreter may want to discuss vocabulary for your class.

    If you have any difficulties understanding your interpreter, schedule a meeting. If you are unable to resolve an issue, contact the DRC. You can request that someone from the DRC observe the interpreter in your class.

    Each semester, students are asked to anonymously evaluate their interpreters. Student feedback will be shared with each interpreter.

    Expectations for Interpreters

    NIU interpreters are expected to follow the Code of Ethics established by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf and the policies and procedures of NIU Interpreter Services:

    • The interpreter is expected to treat all assignment-related information confidentially. The interpreter should not talk about what happens in your class, meeting, or counseling session.
    • The interpreter is expected to interpret the full message accurately and should not censor or add to the message.
    • The interpreter should remain impartial and not become involved in the situation they are interpreting.
    • The interpreter should not offer or give personal information about you, but instead suggest the person speak to you directly.

    Interpreters share information about students and work experiences/challenges with other DRC staff on a need-to-know basis to improve interpreter services.