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Ms. Teresa Lynch
Assistant Professor, C.L.C.S.
Assistant Professor, Centre for Deaf Studies


Teresa is an Assistant Professor (part-time) at the Centre for Deaf Studies where she teaches courses on Irish Sign Language and interpreting. She holds an MSc in Deafhood Studies (University of Bristol), a Diploma in ISL Teaching (TCD) & a Community Management Diploma (NCI). In 2021, despite the Covid pandemic, she lead the first-ever programme that trained over 20 Deaf people to become qualified Deaf interpreters. She served as the chairperson of the National Deaf Women of Ireland. She has served on several other committees: She was the (first female) chairperson of the Irish Deaf Society (1990-2) and was a Director of SLIS - the government-funded Sign Language Interpreting Service. Teresa has presented on Deafhood, Irish Sign Language, issues relating to Deaf women, and interpreting in many domains. Teresa is a practising interpreter, who has also worked with external bodies that hire interpreters/translators (e.g. RTE). She is a member of the Council of Irish Sign Language Interpreters (CISLI) and is a founder member of The Council of Irish Sign Language Teachers (CISLT), established in 2018.

Publications and Further Research Outputs

Peer-Reviewed Publications

Justisigns: Developing research-based training resources on sign language interpreting in police settings in Europe. in, editor(s)Brunson, Jeremy L. , Teaching legal interpreting, Washington DC, Gallaudet University Press, 2022, [Napier, Jemina; Skinner, Robert; Turner, G. H.;Leeson, Lorraine; Lynch, Teresa; Sheikh, Haaris; Vermeerbergen, Myriam; Salaets, Heidi; Doggen, Carolien; Haug, Tobias; Bucher, B.; Diaz, B.; Berger, M.; Krähenbühl, M. ] Book Chapter, 2022 URL

Sign Language Interpreting in Ireland in, editor(s)Napier, J., Adam, R., and Webb, S. , International perspectives on sign language interpreter education (2nd Edition), Gallaudet University Press, 2022, [Sheridan, S., Lynch, L. and Leeson, L.] Book Chapter, 2022

Access to Justice for deaf signers: the Justisigns Project in, editor(s)Goedele A.M. De Clerk eds, , UNCRPD Implementation in Europe - a deaf perspective: Article 9: Access to Information and communication, Brussels,, European Union of the Deaf, 2021, [Leeson, Lorraine; Jemina Napier, Tobias Haug, Tersa Lynch, and Haaris Sheikh] Book Chapter, 2021

You Have the Right to Remain Signing: A Snapshot of the Irish Justice System and Deaf Signers, 11, Special Issue , (2020), 142 - 173p, Leeson, L., Flynn S., Lynch, T & Sheikh, H Journal, 2020 URL

O'Callaghan, R & Lynch, T, It's all about the Team!, The Journal of the Irish Association for Applied Linguistics, Vol. 11, (Special Issue ), 2020, p174 - 194 Journal Article, 2020 URL

O'Connell, N & Lynch, T, Deaf Interpreters' Perception of Themselves as Professionals in Ireland: A Phenomenological Study, Journal of Interpretation, 28 , (2), 2020, p1 - 22 Journal Article, 2020 URL

Noel O'Connell and Teresa Lynch, Translating Deaf Culture: An Ethnodrama, Qualitative Journal SAGE Publications, 10.1177/1077800004, (9843945), 2019, p1 - 11 Journal Article, 2019 DOI DOI DOI DOI DOI

Lorraine Leeson, Haaris Sheikh, Myriam Vermeerbergen, Jemina Napier, Robert Skinner, Teresa Lynch, Tobias Haug, Heidi Salaets, Graham H. Turner, Future proofing access to justice for deaf sign language users in the European Union: Language and Policy Issues, International Congress of Linguists 20, Cape Town, South Africa, 2-6 July 2018, 2018 Oral Presentation, 2018

Research with Deaf Sign Language Users: Action Research in Bilingual-Bimodal Legal Contexts in, Jim McKinley and Heath Rose , Doing Research in Applied Linguistics: Realities, Dilemmas and Solutions, London, Routledge, 2017, pp134 - 146, [Lorraine Leeson, Jemina Napier,, Robert Skinner, Teresa Lynch, Lucia Venturi and Haaris Sheikh] Book Chapter, 2017 URL

Leeson, Lorraine, Lucia Venturi, Teresa Lynch and Haaris Sheikh, Access to Justice for Deaf People in the EU, 5th Community Interpreting Conference, GEMS, University of Limerick, 20 May 2016, 2016 Conference Paper, 2016 URL TARA - Full Text

Leeson, Lorraine, Haaris Sheikh, Asim Sheikh, Lucia Venturi and Teresa Lynch, Stakeholders in Shaping Better Policy and Practice: An Irish Case Study, Critical Link 8, Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland, 29 June - 1 July 201, 2016 Conference Paper, 2016 URL

Lorraine Leeson, Lucia Venturi and Teresa Lynch , Justisigns: Toward Equality Before the Law for European Deaf People, NUI Cork, 26 May 2015, 2015, Dr. Gill Harold Invited Talk, 2015 TARA - Full Text

Lorraine Leeson and Teresa Lynch, Using Demand-Control Schema in Police Settings, 20-21 September 2014, In:Using Demand-Control Schema in Police Settings, 2014, Trinity College Dublin Meetings /Conferences Organised, 2014 URL

Lynch, Teresa, 'Irish Sign Language (ISL) information on domestic violence.', Women's Aid,, Women's Aid, 2014, - Translation, 2014 URL

Three Leaps of Faith and Four Giant Steps: Developing Interpreter Training in Ireland in, editor(s)Jemina Napier , Signed language interpreter education and training: A world survey, Washington DC, Gallaudet University Press, 2009, pp35 - 56, [Lorraine Leeson and Teresa Lynch] Book Chapter, 2009

Non-Peer-Reviewed Publications

Lynch, Teresa, Deaf Peoples' Experiences of Working as Professional Interpeters in the Republic of Ireland, University of Bristol , 2015 Thesis, 2015

Research Expertise


Since the late 1980s I have been actively focussed on researching and promoting Irish Sign Language (ISL) now one of Ireland's official languages but a language that has been greatly stigmatised and is still largely misunderstood, misused and underfunded in Irish society. My work has become increasingly research-led since I joined Trinity College and the Centre for Deaf Studies in 2009, much of it located within collaborative projects. My research currently focusses on the following key themes: . Deaf Interpreter professionalism . Sign language interpretation in the justice system (e.g. developing research-based training resources in police settings) . Irish Sign Language development work (resulting in, e.g., development of new signs to meet communication requirements during Covid pandemic; a national gender-based violence signs focus group; ISL information on domestic violence with Women's Aid) . Experiences and needs of Irish Deaf women, Deaf migrants without ISL I am committed to researching and raising awareness of Deaf Interpreters. These are Deaf or hard-of-hearing professionals who possess fluency in ISL and have recognised skills in the interpretation/translation of meaning. Deaf interpreters provide supports that bridge unique cultural or linguistic barriers that have been recognised as existing within the Deaf community. I am a leading expert in the field of Deaf Interpreting. Deaf interpreters often work alongside hearing interpreters to bring additional skills needed to bridge the communication gap between individuals. Deaf interpreters often work interlingually (between two different languages) as well as intralingually with individuals with additional language needs - for example, between different forms or dialects of ISL unfamiliar to most hearing interpreters, such as the variant of ISL used by elderly Deaf women. My research has led recently to the establishment of first ever formal Deaf Interpreter training course in Ireland, one of only a very few such courses in the world.



Register of Irish Sign Language Interpreters - Panelist 2020

Director of Sign Language Interpreter Service 2007

Awards and Honours

European Language Label Award (JUSTISIGNS project consortium) 2017


Irish Deaf Society (IDS) 1981 – Present

National Deaf Women of Ireland (NDWI) 1992 – Present

European Network of Sign Language Teachers (ENSLT) 2013 – Present

The Council of Irish Sign Language Teachers 2013 – Present

The Council of Irish Sign Language Interpreters 2011 – Present

European Forum of Sign Language Interpreters (efsli) 2010 – 2020

Member of ISL Academy 2006 – 2012