The definition of Community Interpreting is subject to a great deal of philosophical, political and wishful thinking. Definitions range from the inclusion of any willing bilingual amateur to only holders of a bachelor degree interpreting – in settings that are similarly broad in scope.
Our view is that the purpose Community Interpreting is to facilitate communication between community service providers – such as welfare offices, schools, immigrant settlement organizations – and people in the community who do not speak English comfortably enough. It is the first stage of development of the individual interpreter.
Community Interpreters generally work in a non-adversarial environment where both sides of the conversation have basically the same goal – to understand each other.
However, interpreting for the police can be very adversarial. We include police interpreting because community interpreters can be called upon for police interviews and interrogations. The interpreters must understand the work the environment and be aware of the pitfalls they may face.
In theory, immigration interpreting should be non-adversarial but from time to time an immigration official can aappear somewhat aggressive or the end client can seem evasive or even untruthful.
Our program is an extension of the material introduced in Basics of Interpreting with specific information and terminologies associated with the various community agencies and settings, and a great deal of workshop instruction and practice in consecutive interpreting and sight translation – which is the reading aloud in one language a document written in a different language.
Completion, Exam, Certificate
- A Statement of Completion issued for each course.
- There will be a final exam offered upon completion of all the courses. This is a modern exam created by us solely for this program. There is a fee for this exam.
- A "Certificate in Community Interpreting" will be granted to students who have passed all of the above sessions and the final Exam (with a score of at least 70% on all components).