This study provides an exploration in how a Deaf interpreters’ ethical decision-making process is impacted by the amount of training they receive and identifies influential factors on their ethical decision-making process. In 2013 the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) updated the Certified Deaf Interpreter (CDI) written examination on the Code of Ethics to match current ethical guidelines, which are now called the RID-NAD Code of Professional Conduct (CPC). The videotaped interview data includes reflections shared by 13 Deaf interpreters who were tested by the certifying body. The interview data was analyzed using a grounded theory approach. Due to the amount of data received, Mendoza’s Typology (2010) based on high-context vs. low-context and collectivistic vs. individualistic continua was utilized to categorize recurring themes for this paper. Results indicate that information sharing, providing optimal services to Deaf consumers, and cultural mediation are all common ethical choices that Deaf interpreters make. Their decisions are mainly collectivistic due to their shared experiences as Deaf people. Yet the level of training Deaf interpreters obtain determines whether they are high- or low-context in their ethical decision-making abilities. Currently, the minimum of ethical decision-making training available by RID is not sufficient for Deaf interpreters to reach a high-context end of the continuum.



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