Center for Atypical Language Interpreting (CALI)

For individuals who are Deaf, Hard of Hearing, or DeafBlind, access to vocational rehabilitation services, mental and physical health care, social services, education, telecommunications, the justice system, and civic life depends upon the availability of qualified interpreters. Through a grant from the Department of Education Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) Northeastern University’s American Sign Language Program established the Center for Atypical Language Interpreting (CALI) to help address the growing demand for interpreters with specialized skills to serve Deaf and DeafBlind persons with atypical language.


  • Recording and analyzing samples of atypical ASL.
  • Developing an annotated bibliography of print and video media dealing with atypical language, language dysfluency, and language deprivation.
  • Offering self-paced online learning modules for experienced interpreters.
  • Creating tools for experienced interpreters to encourage deeper reflection and ethical decision-making.
  • Offering a Program of Study, including online learning modules and a Practical Application week, followed by Induction and participation in Communities of Practice.