Sign Language Interpreting

Written by Linda Alexander
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Obtaining sign language interpreting jobs requires more than the ability to sign. As with any two languages, good interpreters must be able to sign fluently and read other people's signing, which takes time to develop. Sign language interpreters need to convey messages between two very different languages and have each party clearly understand the other.

Like any translation, sign language interpreting requires training, qualification, and skill. The first step is to take classes in sign language. It might take you one or two years to learn ASL. Then, practice signing with deaf people and translating between deaf and hearing people that you know. Let them assess your skills honestly to help you improve your skills.

Qualifying to Work in Sign Language Interpreting

To become an interpreter, you should take a qualifying exam when you are ready. Two that have a good reputation are the Registry for Interpreters for the Deaf and the Quality Assessment test given by states. Most interpreters are independent contractors who work through agencies.

Sign language interpreting tests look for signing skills, voicing skills, and sign-to-voice and voice-to-sign skills. The job satisfaction in this career is high. You will be providing a much-needed service that is in high demand.

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