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Deaf Support

Deaf Support

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Interpretation Overview


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Types of Interpretation


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Deaf Support





Deaf Support Services by Ubiqus

Ubiqus offers the most professional deaf support services available:

    ✓ Speech to Text (STT)

    ✓ British Sign Language (BSL)

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[tabs_item title=”Speech to Text (STT) / Palantypists” icon=”fa-pencil”] Also called Palantypists, STT reporters provide real-time subtitling for deaf or hard of hearing users. STT reporters produce scrolling text that helps users to participate actively in meetings and conferences.

Ubiqus has a wealth of experience in Speech to Text.  The service provided by our palantypists and stenographers enables deaf and hard of hearing individuals to participate in meetings on an equal footing with their hearing colleagues.

We also provide complete technical support for projecting the subtitles onto a large screen at conferences.


[tabs_item title=”What is Speech To Text (STT) or Palantypists?” icon=”fa-pencil”]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”STT: the basics” open=”yes” bg_color=”none/#333333″] Speech to Text reporters – sometimes known as Palantypistsare able to create a verbatim record of a meeting in real time. By using special keyboards they are able to keep up with the speed of speech. The text appears simultaneously on the reporter’s laptop screen or is projected onto a larger screen for users to read. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”Who uses STT?” open=”yes/no” bg_color=”none/#333333″] Speech to Text is frequently used by people who were born hearing and later have hearing loss or become deaf. It is appropriate for someone whose first or preferred language is English rather than British Sign Language (BSL), and who is comfortable reading scrolling text from a computer screen. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”What types of meetings can use STT?” open=”yes/no” bg_color=”none/#333333″] Speech to Text can be provided for meetings of any size, from small committee meetings to huge conferences. We can provide all the equipment you need. For small meetings and a single users, usually the reporter’s own laptop is enough. For large conferences, we provide complete plasma screen or overhead screen setups. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”A reporter’s skills and training” open=”yes/no” bg_color=”none/#333333″] STT reporters generally start their careers as stenographers or palantypists in courts. After spending several years improving their skills and their speed, some court reporters choose to train as STT reporters. In order to be considered fully qualified, they must be CACDP-registered, a process that includes deaf awareness courses and live assessments. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”The technology” open=”yes/no” bg_color=”none/#333333″] Reporters use either stenograph or palantype machines. Both are types of machine shorthand. Rather than typing every letter, reporters type ‘chords’ – groups of keys that represent syllables or words. Trained STT reporters can type up to 220 words a minute – fast enough to keep up with the speed of speech. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]


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[tabs_item title=”British Sign Language (BSL)” icon=”fa-pencil”] British Sign Language is used instead of STT for users whose preferred language is BSL rather than English.

BSL interpreters provide simultaneous interpretation of spoken English into British Sign Language. Our BSL interpreters work in all types of settings:

  • interpreting for clients one-on-one,
  • supporting small groups and
  • meetings.


[tabs_item title=”British Sign Language Interpreters: What is BSL Interpretation?” icon=”fa-pencil”]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”BSL Interpreters: the basics” open=”yes/no” bg_color=”none/#333333″] BSL interpreters provide simultaneous interpretation of spoken English into British Sign Language. Sign language interpreters train for many years and gain advanced qualifications in order to achieve the right levels of expertise for interpretation at professional meetings and conferences. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”Who uses British Sign Language (BSL)?” open=”yes” bg_color=”none/#333333″] BSL is frequently used by people who were born deaf or who had hearing loss early in life. For many users of BSL, British Sign Language is their first and preferred language. BSL is not simply a signed version of English: it is a distinct language, and in 2003 it was recognised by the UK government as a language in its own right.

Some people who become deaf or have hearing loss as adults prefer to communicate in English and do not use BSL. For these users, Palantypists / Speech to Text is the right choice for support at meetings and events. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”What types of meetings can use BSL Interpreters?” open=”yes/no” bg_color=”none/#333333″] BSL interpreters support meetings of any size, from small committee meetings to huge conferences. For one-on-one or small group meetings that are relatively short in duration, we usually provide one BSL interpreter. For larger events and conferences, or for longer meetings, sign language interpreters work in pairs, switching every 20-30 minutes. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”Is any equipment needed for BSL Interpretation?” open=”yes/no” bg_color=”none/#333333″] Yes and no. The interpreters themselves require no equipment except their own ears, hands and expressions! However, very often the signing needs to be made visible to many users around a large meeting room or conference hall – or to be video recorded and integrated with a video of the speaker for distribution on DVD or over the web.

When you need video projection or recording of the BSL interpreter’s work, we can provide all the equipment and technical expertise you need. We can also help with the issue of copyright: the interpreter owns the copyright of his or her own work, so when you need a video we can help to ensure that provisions are made for copyright. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]

[accordion effect=”FadeInUp”] [accordion_item title=”A BSL Interpreter’s skills and training” open=”yes/no” bg_color=”none/#333333″] Sign language interpreters go through a comprehensive course of study on the way to becoming fully qualified professionals. The key qualification for a professional BSL Interpreter is the achievement of the Level 4 NVQ through the series of qualifications administered by Signature, formerly the CACDP (Council for the Advancement of Communication with Deaf People). Our BSL interpreters hold the Level 4 NVQ and are members of professional registers. [/accordion_item] [/accordion]


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