American Sign Language Interpreting
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Interpreting for Deaf People

American Sign Language Interpreting

The American Sign Language Interpreting program at Golden West College is designed to provide students with sign and interpreting skills sufficient for general entry-level employment in the interpreting profession. Emphasis is on use of American Sign Language, but other forms of signed English are used. The coursework is designed to provide basic information about deafness and other areas of knowledge related to interpreting. It also includes classes for building interpreting skills and supervised interpreting experience.

Our curriculum is aimed at preparing people for general interpreting employment. Specialties such as legal interpreting, interpreting for deaf/blind clients, and religious or artistic interpreting are not covered in detail. Graduates are encouraged to apply for certification by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, for which the Golden West program has been designed to prepare them.

What is Interpreting?

Interpreting is a tri-step process of receiving a message in one language, grasping its meaning and intent, and delivering it into another language. This is a simple definition of a complex process that requires a high degree of linguistic, cognitive and technical skills. Interpreters encounter a wide variety of situations ranging from public events to very personal medical and counseling settings. Interpreters work in rehabilitation, education, state and local government, medical facilities, legal practices and other community services.

They may specialize in one area of interpreting such as legal interpreting, interpreting for deaf/blind clients, religious interpreting or artistic interpreting.