Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies and Communication Equity - MA

Program Description

The Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies and Communication Equity (MAISCE) is a graduate program unprecedented in its approach to interpreter education. The program educates professional signed language interpreters (both Deaf and non-Deaf) who seek to enhance their role as leaders at the local, national and global level. Through a unique learning environment that cultivates the quest for communication equity for their constituents, students gain theoretical knowledge about the linguistic, political and organizational factors that shape communication in society and apply that knowledge to the design and implementation of a thesis or action research project. Administered by the School of Humanities, Arts and Sciences at St. Catherine University, the program brings together diverse individuals from across the nation who have the shared goal of linguistic and communication access for all. 

The program consists of 30 semester hours (10 courses). To accommodate individuals seeking graduate education but who live at a distance from the St. Catherine campus, the MAISCE program is offered online. The MAISCE is comprised of web-based distance learning and video conferencing as well as one 5-day summer session. The on-site summer session is intended to promote a sense of community by using the living-learning community framework in which students are actively engaged in learning together and from one another.

In their intellectual journey, students engage in stimulating coursework that is integrated across three primary domains: 1) linguistic and cultural competence, 2) ethical, social and political leadership, and 3) critical inquiry and creative action. Mastery in the domains are achieved through the reading of critical texts; reflecting on fundamental issues; discussing topics with colleagues, community members and faculty; creating and implementing a thesis or action research project; and producing scholarly writing and presentations. Learning is fostered by faculty members who are actively engaged in interpreting, teaching, research, and developing leadership opportunities for students. The courses and interactions guide students in their development of advanced linguistic competencies, theoretical knowledge, critical thinking, and leadership roles within the deaf and interpreting communities.

Learning Objectives

Following are the student learning objectives for the program:

  1. Graduates demonstrate knowledge of the linguistic, social and political forces that influence interpretation.
  2. Graduates know and can advocate effectively for professional standards, practices and ethics.
  3. Graduates generate options to influence change within organizations and systems based on synthesis and evaluation of contextual factors.
  4. Graduates demonstrate an advanced understanding of intersectionality.
  5. Graduates integrate professional values and behaviors to advance the profession and serve diverse populations.
  6. Graduates assume leadership roles in the interpreting profession.
  7. Graduates apply theoretical knowledge of interpretation studies to their interpreting practice, analyses and research questions.
  8. Graduates effectively design and carry out all phases of an original thesis or action research project.
  9. Graduates explore contextual and environmental factors that influence interpreting in organizations and systems.
  10. Graduates explore scopes of practice and roles within interpreting and inter-professional teams.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies and Communication Equity is conferred upon candidates who have met the following requirements:

  • completion of required courses
  • attainment of a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.

Transfer Credits

Program director approval required.

Student Policies

Students in the MAISCE program will be required to maintain a B average.  Students who do not maintain a B average or who earn more than one grade of C+ or lower may be asked to withdraw from the program. Students will also be required to meet the policies described in the MAISCE Program Handbook.

Progression Policy

In order to remain in good standing, students must fulfill the following:

  • maintain an overall 3.0 grade point average
  • earn a grade of B– or better in each graduate course
  • successfully complete a thesis or action research project, which includes garnering approval for their planned study by the Institutional Review Board
  • adhere to the department’s criteria for professional/ethical behavior, integrity, honesty, personal behavior, and respect for others.

Conditions for Probation

Students will be placed on probation for one term for any of the following reasons:

  • lack of attendance and participation (90% attendance is required in the entire program)
  • overall GPA is less than 3.0
  • earned a grade below B- in any graduate course
  • failure to fulfill the department’s criteria for professional/ethical behavior, integrity, honesty, personal behavior, and respect for others
  • violation of the Institution’s policy on academic integrity
  • violation of the Institution’s policy on student conduct

Note: St. Catherine expects all students and faculty to uphold the highest standards of academic integrity. Any act of academic dishonesty threatens the value of all scholastic endeavors.

The Program Director will identify the conditions of academic probation in writing. Failure to meet the written conditions for academic probation or to bring the grade point average to 3.0 by the end of the term on probation will result in automatic suspension from the Program under ordinary circumstances.

Under extraordinary circumstances, students may petition in writing to repeat a course, but may not take the next courses in sequence unless the petition has been approved and the conditions for continuance agreed upon. Decisions regarding petitions will be made by the Program Director.

Removal from Probation

Students must complete the next segment of the program with grades of B- or better. If students do not qualify for removal from probation but show significant improvement, they may be placed on extended probation. At the end of the probationary period students may be removed from probation, placed on extended probation or dismissed.

In addition, removal from probation will occur when the incomplete or grades below B- are converted to a B- or better.

In the event that a student is on probation for violating professional/ethical or academic integrity codes, readmission to the program would be considered if conditions of probation have been fully met according to review by the Program Director and Department Chair.

Conditions for Program Dismissal

Program dismissal will result if conditions for removal from probation are not adequately met.

Conditions for Readmission to the Program

Students who have discontinued program course work for any reason - academic disqualification or personal reasons - must contact the Office of Graduate Admission to complete the readmission process. In addition, readmission to the program will occur when the following conditions have been met:

  • readmission has been approved by the Program Director and Chair of the ASL and Interpreting Department
  • a reasonable study plan has been made and mutually agreed upon by the student and Program Director/Chair

Readmission may not be possible after violation(s) of the department's criteria for professional/ethical behavior, integrity, academic integrity, honesty, personal behavior, or respect for others

Technology Statement

MAISCE students are expected to demonstrate a working knowledge of computer technology and data searching. Everyone in the program uses e-mail to communicate, word processing for papers, and video software for filming work in ASL. In addition, the program builds from Desire2Learn technology for posting course documents, submitting papers/videos and/or having discussions. All students use data searching for research assignments. Technology also is used for small group work and communication.

INTP 5100Conflict Theory and Dispute Resolution3
INTP 5200Language Policy within Social and Political Structures3
INTP 5250Language and Power3
INTP 5350Ethics and Socially Responsible Leadership3
INTP 6993Topics: (Understanding Structural Inequity)3
INTP 6100Research Methods in Interpretation3
INTP 6150Analyzing Language and Interpretation3
INTP 6200Critical Inquiry: Thesis or Action Research Project Development3
INTP 6300Seminar: Action Project/Thesis Development3
INTP 6350Being Agents of Change3
Total Credits30