Date of Award

Fall 12-7-2015

Exit Requirement


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies


Special Education

Committee Chair

Amanda Smith

Committee Member

Dr. Hamid Behmard

Committee Member

Dr. Amber Feist


The goal of this research is to begin a discussion in the ASL/English interpreting field about how personally held motivations and values impact the decision making process. From the decision to enter this field to the decisions an interpreter makes on a daily basis, values are central to understanding that process. The first step in this analysis was to collect data from current interpreters and interpreting students to see what motivational values are prioritized within professional communities. This data was collected through an online questionnaire made available through multiple social media websites that support various ASL/English interpreting communities. Through statistical analysis of the results of this questionnaire and the coding of one short answer question the following questions are addressed: What motivational values do ASL/English interpreters prioritize? How are these values expressed when interpreters are asked to articulate the reasons for pursuing a career in this field? Do participant’s demographic characteristics (e.g., native language(s), educational background, ethnic identity, and specialized work settings) relate with prioritization of motivational value types?

The results showed that the sample prioritized the motivational types of self-direction, benevolence, and universalism most highly. Some possible reasons for this value prioritization will be explored as well as sub-populations with the sample that diverged from this motivational value system.

The hope is that by examining the findings of this data, practicing interpreters and interpreting students can begin to explore their own individually held values and how conflicting and congruent values are expressed and assessed within their practice.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.