Office of Deaf Services Webinars

Understanding Deaf Culture – Elijah Buchholz
This webinar introduces the concepts of providing culturally appropriate and linguistically accessible mental health services to members of the Deaf community. Participants will develop a basic understanding of Deaf culture and its specific needs, and what American Sign Language is and how it affects the communication process in mental health treatment. Participants will also learn how the Americans with Disabilities Act applies to working with Deaf individuals in mental health settings and how to work effectively with interpreters.

Working with Interpreters – Elijah Buchholz
This webinar will teach viewers how to effectively work with an interpreter in a mental health setting and is geared towards sign language interpreters/Deaf consumers; however the tips can be used for foreign language situations as well. Included are general tips as well as what to do before the session, during the session, and after the session.

Deaf Services Training

Full Version (11 Hours)

The Deaf Services Training program is an introductory training for mental health clinicians who want to develop the cultural competence necessary to provide appropriate services to consumers who are Deaf. Topics include:

  • American Sign Language (ASL), including its features, its significance in the Deaf Community, and the ASL skill variance in the Deaf population;
  • Cultural aspects of the Deaf population;
  • Medical, psychosocial, and developmental aspects of the Deaf population;
  • Language and educational issues in the Deaf population including limitations in English fluency, lip-reading, literacy, and fund of information.
  • Effective working relationships between interpreters and clinicians;
  • Differences in diagnostic presentation, treatment approaches, and treatment effectiveness for deaf individuals vs. hearing individuals;
  • Effective working relationships in Deaf Services treatment teams.

Video Version (4 Hours)

The Deaf Services Training, Video Version is a condensed version of the full training above. The same topics are covered but in less depth and without supplemental readings. CMHC staff are encouraged to complete this training in Relias Learning to earn a training certificate. Relias Learning Lookup Code: MOCMHC-DEAFSERVICES

Working with People with Hearing Loss

Mental Health Practitioner Online Training (3 Hours)

This online training from the Minnesota Department of Human Services, Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services Division Mental Health Program helps mental health practitioners recognize the signs of hearing loss and how hearing loss impacts an individual’s emotional health, self-image, relationships, and ability to function in a world that relies on auditory information.  This course focuses on the unique needs, issues and experiences of individuals who:

  • Have some degree of hearing loss;
  • May or may not accept that they have a hearing loss;
  • May have undiagnosed hearing loss;
  • Do not consider themselves deaf, even if their hearing loss is severe or profound;
  • Do not use sign language as their primary way of communicating.

More than Meets the Eye: An Introduction to Autism Spectrum Disorders

Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center Webinar (1 Hour)

Dr. Christen Szymanski, director of Research and Evaluation at the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center, and a recognized expert on deaf and hard of hearing children with autism, explains the early warning signs of autism that may be present in young children who are deaf or hard of hearing. She discusses how some of the current characteristics, warning signs, and tools for diagnosing autism may not apply to children who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Deaf Services Advocates Training

Next Course Anticipated in Fall 2017

The Deaf Services Advocates Program provides the opportunity for Community Mental Health Centers (CMHCs) and other DBH contracted providers to have staff designated as a Deaf Services Advocate to enable deaf and hard of hearing consumers to navigate DMH services more easily and improve the quality of care they receive. Advocates receive specialized training from the Office of Deaf Services in how to support the provision of culturally appropriate, linguistically accessible services and the rights of deaf and hard of hearing consumers to make informed decisions about services and communication options.

Introduction to Mental Health Interpreting

4.0 CEUs (1.75 Ethics CEUs) – Next Offering Anticipated January 2018

With Robyn Dean, Ph.D. / Curriculum by Robert Pollard, Ph.D.

Learn the fundamentals of mental health interpreting from the leaders in the field, Drs. Robyn Dean and Robert Pollard. This 6-month course provides 32 hours of independent study focused on core competencies and four 2-hour online group sessions with Dr. Dean. The training is underwritten by the DMH Office of Deaf Services and hosted by Interpretek. For more information or to register, please visit Interpretek's Online Focus

Interpreter Exchange Program

The Interpreter Exchange Program is designed to assist interpreters with completing DMH's Introduction to Mental Health Interpreting training course. The course costs $500 and includes tuition, fees, books, and CEUs. The Interpreter Exchange Program offsets this cost for participating interpreters by allowing them to provide no-cost interpreting services within the DMH system in exchange for DMH's paying the cost of the training. The application deadline for 2017 participation has passed. For more information, please see the links below.