Date of Award

Spring 5-12-2017

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science - Resource Interpretation



First Advisor

Dr. Shelby Laird

Second Advisor

Dr. Pat Stephens Williams

Third Advisor

Dr. Ray Darville


The role of interpersonal touch has been studied in communication fields, demonstrating a handshake or other form of appropriate interpersonal touch (AIT) has rendered favorable results in rapport building with an audience as well as developing audience comfort and receptivity to messaging. This study aimed to determine if the use of a handshake prior to interpretive programming would increase the positivity of perception of a visitor toward interpreters and/or the message shared by interpreters. Researchers also sought the viewpoints of professionals in the field of interpretation about the current use and perception of touch. Finally, a post-survey interview was conducted with each interpreter involved the study. Through three angles, the research demonstrated that AIT positively affects a visitor’s perception of the interpreter and the message shared. The research also provides boundaries and next steps toward researching AIT’s role in the field of interpretation.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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