Deaf Interpreter Development Programme

Upcoming classes:
10 September 2021 - 18 June 2023 (weekends)
Face-to-face
Wimbledon, London

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Course Content

Course Content


The Deaf Interpreter Development Programme (DIDP) course is open to deaf native and first language BSL signers who would like to pursue a career as a qualified sign language interpreter or translator. You will achieve the Signature Level 6 Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting and Translation qualification. This course leads to Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) and/or Registered Sign Language Translator (RSLT) status with the NRCPD. This is currently the only course of its kind in the UK.

The Deaf Interpreter Development Programme (DIDP) course is open to deaf native and first language BSL signers who would like to pursue a career as a qualified sign language interpreter or translator. You will achieve the Signature Level 6 Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting and Translation qualification. This course leads to Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) and/or Registered Sign Language Translator (RSLT) status with the NRCPD. This is currently the only course of its kind in the UK. This course recognises the value and expertise that deaf native signers bring to the sign language interpreting and translation profession, and aims to encourage more deaf people to consider a career as a sign language interpreter or translator. We have developed the DIDP course based on our extensive experience in the interpreting, translation and training fields. The course is made up of 180 hours of guided learning and 180 hours of independent learning spread over 2 years. This is an intensive programme and requires your full commitment. This course will take you from little or no knowledge of sign language interpreting to Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) and/or Registered Sign Language Translator (RSLT) status. You must already hold a Level 6 BSL qualification or have completed our Interpreting Foundations course. You will be able to register as a Trainee Sign Language Interpreter (TSLI) and/or Trainee Sign Language Translator (TSLT) in the second year of this course (subject to you also meeting all other requirements set out by the NRCPD). You will have the option to study American Sign Language (ASL) alongside your BSL and interpreting training. Students who complete the ASL training will be eligible to sit the RID National Interpreter Certification (NIC) exam to register as an ASL interpreter in the USA, as well as with the NRCPD as a RSLI/RSLT with BSL/English/ASL as core languages. The course is delivered in an informal and relaxed environment and your teacher will use a variety of teaching and learning methods to cater for all learning styles and to meet the needs of all learners. The course is designed to be fun, engaging and meaningful and will give you the opportunity to practice your BSL and interpreting skills by means of group work, pair work, role-plays, games, presentations and discussions.




Year 1


The first year is made up of 120 hours of guided learning hours and 120 hours of structured independent study (total 240 hours). The guided learning sessions are divided into 10x 12-hour sessions over a weekend once a month over 10 months. This is followed by an additional 12 hours of structured independent study per month, which is completed through our e-learning platform. In the first year, you will develop your knowledge, understanding and skills in the following areas: Beginners American Sign Language

You will start learning American Sign Language alongside your training as a BSL interpreter, working towards pre-intermediate level (A2).

Theories and principles in interpreting and translation studies

You will be introduced to a wide variety of key theoretical frameworks in interpreting and translation studies, such as functionalist theories, ethical models and the role of the interpreter and translator. It will introduce you to some of the current principles and issues in the public service interpreting and translation professions, with a focus on signed language interpreting and translation, and will encourage you to think critically about your own practice by applying a range of theoretical frameworks. You will also discuss ethical dilemmas that may arise during interpreting assignments.

Maintain skills and systems for interpreting tasks

You will understand the importance of maintaining interpreting and language skills as a professional interpreter and you will critically evaluate a range of systems to help you maintain your professional skills. As most sign language interpreters and translators are self-employed/freelance, you will learn about the requirements and demands of working as a freelance interpreter/translator, including practical business administration skills, the importance of maintaining good relationships with clients and how to find and charge appropriately for interpreting work.

Prepare for interpreting assignments

You will learn about the importance of preparing for interpreting assignments, applying key theories in interpreting and translation studies to plan and prepare appropriately for assignments. You will be able to assess your own ability to undertake, and accept, interpreting assignments, as well as plan and prepare for assignments as part of a team of interpreters. You will learn about the importance of maintaining a glossary for domains you regularly work in. You will critically evaluate and apply a range of preparation strategies and you will produce evidence of preparing for 4 assignments.

Plan and implement continuous professional development

You will work with your professional supervisor to plan your development points over the course of your studies. You will create, maintain and update a Professional Development Plan throughout your studies. Your plan will be informed by trends, developments and good practice in the sign language interpreting/translation profession as well as your own evaluation of your gaps in knowledge, skills and competence. You will have regular meetings with your supervisor to review your PDP (required to maintain your TSLI registration).

Consecutive and simultaneous interpreting

This is a practical module where you will practise interpreting between BSL and Modified BSL and between ASL and BSL. You will be encouraged to critically analyse your own interpreting by applying relevant theories in interpreting and translation studies. You will be introduced to consecutive and simultaneous interpreting and you will be taught interpreting techniques, including note-taking skills. You will practice both one-way and two-way interpreting, working with English, BSL and ASL. This module will also introduce you to some of the main domains that interpreters work in.

Introduction to translation

This is a practical module where you will practise translating between English and BSL. You will be encouraged to critically analyse your own translating by applying relevant theories in interpreting and translation studies. You will be introduced to text translation, sight and immediate translation, in-vision translation and subtitling.




Year 2


The second year is made up of 120 hours of guided learning hours and 120 hours of structured independent study (total 240 hours). The guided learning sessions (including assessment time) are divided into 10x 12- hour sessions over a weekend once a month over 10 months. This is followed by an additional 12 hours of structured independent study per month, which is completed through our e-learning platform. In the second year, you will develop your knowledge, understanding and skills in the following areas:

Intermediate American Sign Language

You will continue to develop your ASL skills towards intermediate level (B2).

Professional interpreting

This module will focus on the practical skills required for one-way and two-way consecutive and simultaneous interpreting. It will introduce you to the cognitive processes and stages of the interpreting process as well as key skills used in the field, including note taking. You are expected to practise regularly by working as a trainee interpreter and you will also receive regular formative feedback throughout the course. You will continue to have regular supervision meetings with your supervisor.

Work as part of a team of professional interpreters

This module will give you the knowledge and skills to work effectively as part of a team of interpreters. It will equip you with a range of co-working techniques, such as feeding, checking and monitoring skills, as well as strategies to work with other professionals (i.e. relay interpreters and English>BSL translators). You will consider a wide range of co-working techniques in various situations and domains, using key principles and ethical models to justify your decisions.

Remote interpreting

You will learn about the emerging field of Video Relay Interpreting (VRI) and engage critically with current debates about VRI in the sign language interpreting field. You will learn how to prepare and perform VRI assignments, including how to set up, check and monitor equipment effectively and how to manage the specific demands relating to this mode of delivery. You will also be introduced to subtitling and audiovisual translation.

Professional translation

You will carry out translations of written English texts to a professional standard, such as text translation, in-vision translation, sight translation and subtitling. You will be able to apply a wide range of interpreting and translation theories and principles to justify your translation approach and ethical decisions.

Evaluate performance as a professional interpreter

You will use a wide range of theoretical frameworks, ethical frameworks and key principles in interpreting and translation studies to critically evaluate your own interpreting performance. You will be able to justify and analyse the interpreting approach, as well as evaluate the consequences of ethical decisions made. You will also have the opportunity to engage in group reflective practice sessions. You are required to produce a critical analysis of your interpreting performance for all of the 6x internal assessments.




Assessments


Year 1 Assessments

  1. 3,000 word essay (including in-text citations)
  2. Business plan (detailing systems and processes in place to do business)
  3. Glossary
  4. 4x evidence of preparing for interpreting assignments,
  5. Professional Development Plan and reflective journals
Year 2 Assessments In Year 2, you will choose at least one stream and complete the assessments for that stream. You may choose to complete the assessments for additional streams if you would like to specialise in more than one skill area.
  1. One-way consecutive ASL>BSL and critical analysis
  2. One-way consecutive BSL(M)>BSL and critical analysis
  3. Text translation English>BSL and critical analysis
  1. One-way consecutive BSL>ASL and critical analysis
  2. One-way simultaneous BSL>BSL(M) and critical analysis
  3. In-vision translation English>BSL and critical analysis
  1. One-way simultaneous ASL>BSL and critical analysis
  2. Two-way face-to-face consecutive interpreting and critical analysis
  3. Extended text translation English>BSL and critical analysis
  1. One-way simultaneous BSL>ASL and critical analysis
  2. Two-way face-to-face consecutive interpreting working in a team and critical analysis
  3. Subtitling BSL>English and critical analysis
  1. Two-way face-to-face interpreting (BSL/ASL) and critical analysis
  2. Two-way face-to-face consecutive interpreting (BSL/BSL) and critical analysis
  3. Live consecutive interpreting English>BSL and critical analysis
  1. Two-way remote interpreting (BSL/ASL) and critical analysis
  2. Two-way remote interpreting (BSL/BSL) and critical analysis
  3. Live simultaneous interpreting English>BSL and critical analysis
  1. One-way consecutive ASL>BSL
  2. One-way consecutive BSL(M)>BSL
  3. Live simultaneous interpreting English>BSL
  1. One-way consecutive BSL>ASL
  2. Two-way face-to-face interpreting (BSL/BSL)
  3. Live simultaneous interpreting English>BSL
  1. Two-way face-to-face interpreting (BSL/ASL)
  2. Two-way face-to-face interpreting (BSL/BSL)
  3. Text translation English>BSL
  1. Two-way remote interpreting (BSL/ASL)
  2. Two-way remote interpreting (BSL/BSL)
  3. Text translation English>BSL
  1. Sight translation English>BSL
  2. Immediate translation BSL>English





Entry Requirements

Entry Requirements


Entry Requirements:

  1. Deaf native or first language BSL signer
  2. Level 6 BSL qualification
  3. Interview and skills assessment
  4. Good level of English (e.g. GCSE grade C, IELTS 6.0, CEFR B2)

If you do not hold any qualifications in BSL, you can complete the foundation year in order to achieve the Level 6 BSL qualification. No prior qualifications in BSL are required for entry to the foundation year, but you must be a native/first language BSL signer.

This course is not suitable for people who have learned BSL as a second language (see our Level 6 Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting course).

Language Combinations

This course is available in the following language combinations:

  • BSL (L1) <> ASL (L2) – Stream 2
  • BSL (L1) <> LSF (L2) – Stream 2
  • BSL (L1) <> ISL (L2) – Stream 2
  • BSL (L1) <> Modified BSL (L1M) – Stream 3
  • BSL (L1) <> English (L2) – Stream 4

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

RSLIs or RSLTs wishing to retrain in another stream can apply for RPL for Year 1 and entry to Year 2.

RPL is assessed and awarded on an individual basis. Please contact us to discuss your individual circumstance.





Progression

Progression


There is a growing demand for signed/signed interpreters, relay interpreters and sign language translators.

Interpreters working between two signed languages (e.g. BSL/ASL) can find work in international conference settings (e.g. EU and UN institutions, international deaf organisations), as well as community settings (e.g. deaf community events and conferences, working with foreign deaf nationals in the public services, working with deaf professionals abroad etc.).

In particular, there is a growing demand for sign language interpreters at international conferences. WFD and WASLI have an accreditation process for international sign interpreters, and qualified interpreters with two signed languages are highly sought after.

Relay interpreters often work in public service settings, e.g. police, court, mental health, child protection, DWP assessments. They often work alongside a BSL/English interpreter. The demand for relay interpreters in the public services is rapidly growing.

Sign language translators often find work in the TV and media industry, e.g. in-vision translator of TV programmes. Many sign language translators are approached by deaf and hearing organisations and public bodies (e.g. NHS) to translate written English communication materials into BSL, e.g. for social media and websites. There is a growing demand for BSL translators as organisations seek to make their content and communications accessible to the BSL community.

You will achieve the Signature Level 6 Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting and Translation qualification, which allow you to apply for Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) and/or Registered Sign Language Translator (RSLT) with the NRCPD and start working as a qualified sign language interpreter and/or translator.





Dates/Times

Dates/Times


Year 1 Friday 13:00-20:00, Saturday 10:00-17:00 and Sunday 09:00-16:00 once a month 10-12 September 2021 8-10 October 2021 12-14 November 2021 10-12 December 2021 14-16 January 2022 11-13 February 2022 11-13 March 2022 8-10 April 2022 13-15 May 2022 10-12 June 2022 Year 2 Friday 13:00-20:00, Saturday 10:00-17:00 and Sunday 09:00-16:00 once a month 23-25 September 2022 21-23 October 2022 18-20 November 2022 16-18 December 2022 20-21 January 2023 17-19 February 2023 17-19 March 2023 21-23 April 2023 19-20 May 2023 16-18 June 2023





Fees

Fees


Interview and assessment fee: £50 (non-refundable) Module 0: £1000 Module 1: £1670 Module 2: £1670 Module 3: £1670 Module 4: £1670 Module 5: £1980 Module 6: £1980 Module 7: £1980 Total for BSL/ASL interpreter qualification (RSLI): £5,320 Total for deaf relay interpreter qualification (RSLI): £5,320 Total for BSL/English translator qualification (RSLT): £5,320 Total for combined RSLI and RSLT qualification: £7,300 £500 non-refundable deposit required to reserve your place.

Fees include awarding body assessment fees, teacher and assessor time and access to e-learning platform. Monthly Direct Debit payment plan available.

NB: our fees are always all-inclusive, so there are never any unexpected costs! Download Fees and Funding Guidance Download Fee Waiver Guidance




Additional Benefits


  • Professional supervision included
  • Access to therapeutic support from a qualified counsellor
  • Access to Moodle: online learning resources and e-portfolio
  • NRCPD TSLI and TSLT endorsement and supervision
  • Professional Development Series (a series of talks delivered by experienced interpreters with expertise in particular domains)
  • TOTUM student card (discounts in a wide range of shops)
  • A personalised Gmail account with full Google package and 1TB of cloud storage





At a glance:
  • Level 6 (RQF)
  • 2 years
  • 1 weekend/month
  • Open to deaf people
  • London venue
  • Leads to RSLI and RSLT
  • Includes ASL training
  • From £2,750 per year (inc VAT and exam fees)
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