Alternative Formatting: Textbooks in Sign Language


Wednesday, November 2


10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.


Daynia Daby and Kristiana Nelson


In the fall of 2015, Disability Services assembled a team to collaborate and develop an accommodations plan for a student with an unusual set of barriers. The student in ques-
tion is Deaf and, after a full learning assessment, was also diagnosed with a learning disability affecting their reading comprehension. Traditionally, audio books or electronic text with text-to-speech would be used, but because this student was also Deaf, this was not a viable option.

A multi-disciplinary team worked together to support this student by developing a unique approach to making print materials accessible. The student’s disability services counselor and classroom teachers, our staff interpreters, and interpreting coordinator, and our adaptive technology team collaborated in the development of a project to produce sign language video translations for all reading materials assigned as homework (while still providing interpreters for in-class settings).

Our workshop will be presented in the lecture/presentation format, and is intended is to provide attendees with a comprehensive exploration of the unique challenges we faced in this accommodation process. This workshop will have two areas of focus:
The first area will be a discussion of the interactive process and how determination of appropriate accommodations was made
The second area will focus on the logistics of providing the interpreted textbooks: how the reading material was handled; linguistic and semantic considerations for the source/target languages; management of time and materials; and how files were organized and distributed

We intend this workshop to serve as an in-depth case study of a creative and effective approach to the work of disability accommodations, as well as a practical guide to producing signed video text as a viable form of adaptive technology.

Learning Outcomes

  • Gain an understanding of how one institution used the interactive process to identify a need for a non-standard accommodation approach
  • Develop an appreciation for the collaboration needed to provide an effective solution for a student experiencing multiple barriers

Presenter Bio(s)

Daynia Daby holds a Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology and Clinical Art Therapy from Notre Dame deNamur University in Northern California. She has worked in education for several years specializing in work with students with Disabilities from Kindergarten through Adulthood. Daynia has been working in Disability Services within the Higher Education population for the last six years and has been working as a Disability Counselor with Portland Community College for the last three years.

Kristiana Nelson holds a certificate in Sign Language Interpretation from Portland Community College, and a BA in Arts and Letters from Portland State University. She earned her National Interpreter Certification (NIC) through RID (Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf) in 2009. She has worked as an interpreter with Portland Community College Disability Services for nine years. In addition to her position at PCC, Kristiana works as a video relay interpreter, and as a freelance interpreter around the greater Portland area.

Presentation Materials