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Approximately 150 members of the Oklahoma Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (OKRID) are expected at East Central University Friday and Saturday [JAN.16-17] for their biannual meeting.

OKRID is the statewide organization for interpreters for the deaf, said Janna Byrd, ECU assistant professor of human resources and OKRID's 2008-09 vice president.

A free performance at 7 p.m. Friday will be open to the public in the Estep Multimedia Center in the University Center. "RID: The Musical" will view the registry.s history through a variety of visual messages and will show some of the perceptions that control interactions with others, sometimes with adverse effects.

Conference attendees can earn continuing professional education units during educational sessions on Saturday. Sessions will focus on learning assessment techniques to evaluate and improve their American Sign Language skills, hands-on skills development, the deaf interpreter/hearing interpreter teaming process and further examination of perceptions in the field of interpreting.

Byrd said ECU was the first university to provide comprehensive student support services for the deaf and hard of hearing in Oklahoma.

"We were also the first and only university that offers a degree in counseling services to the deaf with an interpreting minor," she said. "This allows students to gain skills and training in American Sign Language. This training establishes foundational skills from which students may become certified sign language interpreters."

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