The purpose of this research is to investigate what interpreters for the Deaf perceive as self-care and how much time they engage in self-care per week. This study takes a holistic approach to looking at interpreters for the Deaf who work in the field and what their practices of self-care are. Self-care was examined within the context of the physical and emotional impacts of interpreting.

I approached this study from inside the profession by asking a sample of nineteen interpreters to participate. Other published works make recommendations for interpreters; however, this study looks at activities interpreters participate in that focus on self-care to sustain balance between their career and personal lives.

This study reveals that interpreters identify self-care as the physical need to exercise, stretch, or receive bodywork. When interpreters were asked about self-care, only one mentioned the moral support of colleagues, debriefing, or peer review. Many who participated stated that they would like to take part in more identified acts of self-care and believe that doing so would be beneficial in avoiding injury and promote longevity in the field.

The findings that emerged from this study exposed the fact that many interpreters benefit from debriefing with colleagues. Further investigation could uncover why interpreters do not consider speaking with their colleagues as a form of self-care. The main reason they do not consider debriefing self-care could be because of the Code of Professional Conduct set forth by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID), and professional practices around confidentiality (NAD RID, 2005).

Exit Requirement


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies

Committee Chair

Elisa Maroney

Committee Member

Amanda R. Smith

Committee Member

Cindy Volk


Self-Care, Interpreting for the Deaf, Compassion Fatigue, Injury while interpreting



Type (DCMI Terms)


Subject Categories

Special Education and Teaching

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Previous Versions

Apr 22 2013

Additional Files

PDF-A Self-Care in the Field of Interpreting.pdf (721 kB)
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