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Emotional Intelligence and ASL Education

Emotional Intelligence (EI) has gained much attention over the past few decades. Along with this there has been substantial research on emotional intelligence and applying it to learning a second or foreign language. This workshop will go over the history and foundations of emotional intelligence, particularly on how academic achievement is strongly associated with several dimensions of emotional intelligence. Previous research involving language learning strategies that incorporate emotional intelligence will be discussed. There will be opportunities for discussion on various teaching approaches using emotional intelligence foundations in a college setting to teaching American Sign Language.

Video (password required)


Sarah Wheeler

Sarah Wheeler

Sarah, M.Ed., NIC-Advanced is currently working as a freelance ASL/English interpreter. She has been working as a professional interpreter since 2007 and has presented nationally and internationally on various topics related to ASL/English Interpreting. Wheeler’s research focuses on ASL/English interpreting education, with an emphasis on emotional intelligence within the interpreting profession. Wheeler has served in the Air Force for six years, holds a B.A. in Business Management from Mount Olive College, a Certificate in Non-Profit Management from Duke Continuing Studies, and an M.Ed. in Interpreter Pedagogy from Northeastern University. She is currently attending Grand Canyon University working on her Ph.D. in General Psychology with an emphasis in Instruction and Cognition. Wheeler has served on the Conference of Interpreter Trainers (CIT) in the position of Director of Research and Publications.

Francis Phiri was born and raised in Lusaka, the capital of Zambia in Africa. At the age of 12, he became ill with malaria and it caused his hearing to slowly deteriorate, becoming Deaf at age 18. Francis studied at Rochester Institute of Technology then returned to Ohlone College to complete his degree in Deaf Studies and Liberal Arts. He is excited to continue his studies in Education at San Francisco State University.

Francis Phiri

Francis Phiri

Francis has taught American Sign Language at a private in Menlo Park California at Mid-Peninsula High and San Francisco international language school, ABC Languages, presents as a motivational speaker for community organizations, workshops, and charter school conferences.  Francis is also Director of Public Relations & Outreach at Conference of Interpreter Trainers 

Francis' goal is to inspire others to follow their dreams and be successful, with patience, flexibility and motivation. He now shares his passion by teaching others the value of education, the importance of communication, and the power of human connections.

The support Francis received during his childhood in Zambia has motivated him to create this non-profit organization, Give Back to the Community in Zambia (GBCZ). www.gbczambia.org