As a signed language interpreter, I must be able to connect with all parts of my brain during interpreting, but much energy is used trying to prevent negative self-talk and managing mental distractors, taking up vital brain space needed to focus on the incoming and outgoing messages. This project will research the effects of mindfulness on cognitive load as a signed language interpreter. I recorded the effectiveness of mindfulness for managing cognitive load by using surveys. The research tracked whether the situation was made more manageable if mindfulness practice was incorporated. Qualitative data was used to investigate my ability to continue interpreting during a stressful situation by using mindfulness techniques, maintaining a balance of cognitive load, and practicing management of incoming personal negative criticism. Quantitative data was taken by using four cognitive therapy surveys and rating blood pressure and heart rate taken before and after Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction class (MBSR). Findings showed a lessened cognitive load during signed language performance with greater attentiveness to the task at hand. There was less negative nagging that had been taking up the brain space required for the interpretation process.
Date of Award
Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies
sign language interpreting, practice profession, mindfulness, cognitive load
American Sign Language | Language Interpretation and Translation
Chambers, C. (2020). Mindfulness and Interpreter Cognitive Load (master's thesis). Western Oregon University, Monmouth, Oregon. Retrieved from https://digitalcommons.wou.edu/theses/139
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