Working With Interpreters to Support Students Who Are English Language Learners The number of English Language Learners (ELL) is increasing in all regions of the United States. Although the majority (71%) speak Spanish as their first language, the other 29% may speak one of as many as 100 or more different languages. In spite of an increasing number of speech-language pathologists ... Article
Article  |   March 31, 2016
Working With Interpreters to Support Students Who Are English Language Learners
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Henriette W. Langdon
    Communicative Disorders and Sciences, San José State University, San Jose, CA
  • Terry Irvine Saenz
    Department of Human Communication Studies, California State University Fullerton, Fullerton, CA
Article Information
Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Part 1
Article   |   March 31, 2016
Working With Interpreters to Support Students Who Are English Language Learners
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, March 2016, Vol. 1, 15-27. doi:10.1044/persp1.SIG16.15
History: Received October 12, 2015 , Revised December 4, 2015 , Accepted December 14, 2015
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, March 2016, Vol. 1, 15-27. doi:10.1044/persp1.SIG16.15
History: Received October 12, 2015; Revised December 4, 2015; Accepted December 14, 2015

The number of English Language Learners (ELL) is increasing in all regions of the United States. Although the majority (71%) speak Spanish as their first language, the other 29% may speak one of as many as 100 or more different languages. In spite of an increasing number of speech-language pathologists (SLPs) who can provide bilingual services, the likelihood of a match between a given student's primary language and an SLP's is rather minimal. The second best option is to work with a trained language interpreter in the student's language. However, very frequently, this interpreter may be bilingual but not trained to do the job.

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