Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions here


Top 5 Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, online training is available through our SCSI Media affiliate. To learn more, visit www.scsimedia.com.

The Southern California School of Interpretation specializes in English-Spanish interpretation. Sorry, we do not offer interpreter training for any other languages.

We do not offer any state or federal or any type of financial aid or grants.

We do not offer payment plans or installment options.

We have the highest success rate for certified interpreters in the states of California and Nevada. 87% of our graduates are now certified interpreters working in both the private and public sectors. 60% of the Spanish language certified court interpreters in the state of California are graduates from our school.


About the Programs

We offer Court, Medical and Professional Interpreter Programs.

You attend one 3.5 hour lecture per week. The suggested home study-time to properly digest your weekly lectures is anywhere from 5-7 hours per week. The required Online Language Laboratory practicum from home is 30-50 hours per quarter or 7-10 hours per week. Yes, dedication is key to your success!

Each program is 9 months with attendance once a week, either on Saturdays or weekday evenings. Please refer to the class schedule for more detailed information.

Our Medical Interpreter Program includes 99 hours of training.


About the State Exams

Yes, we offer a FREE course to prepare for the written component of the state exam. This FREE course is available to current students enrolled in the Sight Translation for Court Interpreters course and the Advanced Criminal Proceedings II courses. All student are given access to this FREE course after midterms through their online language laboratory.

Yes, all students enrolled in the medical interpreter program gain access to a FREE course to prepare for the written component of the medical certification exams offered by the National Board for Certified Medical Interpreters and the Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters while enrolled in the Sight Translation for Medical Interpreters course. All student are given access to this FREE course after midterms through their online language laboratory.

Sorry, we do not offer any courses to prepare for the written component of the federal certification exam. For more information, please visit the Federal Court Interpreter Certification Examination webpage http://www.ncsc.org/fcice.

Sorry, the course is not available to former students or graduates of our school.


Admissions

Yes, we offer FREE monthly group orientations on-campus, please go to the Information section of the website and scroll down to "Free Orientation" to register for the next available orientation.

We are on a quarterly calendar. Courses are 11-weeks and we start a new cycle every 3-months (January, April, July, and October).

Students pay per course, per quarter, $495.00 plus $100.00 registration fee for the first course in the sequence and $595 for each additional course in the program.

11-lectures of 3.5 hours each (on campus), workbook, course syllabus, and access to our unique Online Language Laboratory training platform (²LIT®).

We do not offer state or federal or any type of financial aid or grants.

We do not offer payment plans or installment options.

We do not offer I-20 forms or student visas. We cannot advise you on the process for such permits; however, you may contact the U.S. State Department for more information.

Students must be fluent in Spanish and English, have a US High School diploma or GED, and all students must pass our online Admission Test. For more information on our admission requirements, please click here.

If you do not have a US High School Diploma or GED then you cannot train with us.

Breaks are provided in between each quarter. Since interpreting requires building up skills that are lost without continuous practice, we do not recommend long interruptions in your training, however, if student is gone for over a year, they may re-instate and will need to go back to basics. Which means starting with the first course of the program.


General Frequently Asked Questions

Spoken language court interpreters interpret in civil or criminal court proceedings (e.g., arraignments, motions, pretrial conferences, preliminary hearings, depositions, trials) for witnesses or defendants who speak or understand little or no English. Court interpreters must accurately interpret for individuals with a high level of education and an extensive vocabulary, as well as for persons with very limited language skills without changing the language register of the speaker. Interpreters are also sometimes responsible for translating written documents, often of a legal nature, from English into the target language and from the target language into English.

A medical interpreter is a professional interpreter who has received special training so that he or she can work in a medical setting. Medical interpreters create a bridge between patients and doctors who are separated by language gaps, facilitating communication and ensuring that patients get the care they need. These interpreters may also act as advocates who speak up on the behalf of communities who cannot communicate on their own due to language barriers. Medical interpreters assist during admissions, examinations, consultations, procedures and many other patient-provider encounters.

A professional interpreter is someone who is well versed in civil and federal court proceedings and terminology. As well as immigration court terminology and analytical linguist protocol and code words.

We do not certify students as interpreters, You will need to take the corresponding state or national test.

An interpreter speaks and renders the oral interpretation immediately. A translator writes and renders the written translation later.

Interpretation skills are not innate. Being bilingual does not automatically make you an interpreter. You need to learn the specialized terminology and the proper techniques to render a correct and accurate interpretation.

Consecutive, Simultaneous, and Sight Translation.

Yes, we offer FREE monthly group orientations on-campus, please go to the Information section of the website and scroll down to "Free Orientation" to register for the next available orientation.

If you are a legal resident or have a work permit, you are eligible to work. If you are not a legal resident or if you are not a U.S. citizen, then you are not eligible for employment as a certified interpreter.

The transferability of credits and acceptance of a certificate from the Southern California School of Interpretation is at the complete discretion of an institution to which you may seek to transfer. If the certificate that you earn at this institution is not accepted at the institution to which you seek to transfer, you may be required to repeat some or all of the coursework at that institution. For this reason, you should make certain that your attendance at this institution will meet your educational goals. This includes contacting an institution to which you may seek to transfer, prior to attending the Southern California School of Interpretation, to determine if a certificate from this school will transfer.

We do not accept any credits earned at other institutions. However, any student who has completed an interpreting program in any other institution qualifies to challenge any course at our school. Currently, there is an administrative fee to challenge any course. To challenge a course, the student must submit proof of completion of any interpreting program from any other institution, and the student must contact the Director of Student Services, Ms. Monica Mangaser via e-mail at monica@interpreting.com to remit payment. The challenge exam consists of a written and an oral component based on the course syllabus for that course.

We are exempt by the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education under Section 94874(f) of the California Education Code (CEC). We are a private, vocational institution. We teach a very specialized set of skills, techniques and vocabulary combined with monitoring and extensive language laboratory practicum that only a specialized school such as ours can provide. Our unique training combines the latest technology with excellent customer service and support.

There is always a need for Spanish language interpreters in both the medical and court interpreting fields. The Bureau of Labor Statistics ranks this career as one of the fastest growing careers in the nation. We have on-site recruiters every 3 months.

No, we do not offer job placement services.

Sorry, we do not offer any crash courses. Interpreting requires skill building, which takes time. Other extension programs may take anywhere from 2-3 years to complete. If you train with us, you will learn everything you need to know in 9 months.

Breaks are provided in between each quarter. Since interpreting requires building up skills that are lost without continuous practice, we do not recommend long interruptions in your training, however, if student is gone for over a year, they may re-instate and will need to go back to basics. Which means starting with the first course of the program.

One workbook is included and we recommend using a bilingual dictionary for your specialty (Cost is around $48.00). We do not sell books at school. You will need to purchase it in a bookstore.

You may contact us at 1-800-625-6222, via e-mail at support@interpreting.com, and via live chat. Our office hours are Monday-Thursday from 9:30 am to 6:00 pm and Saturdays from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. Our school is closed on Fridays , Sundays, and major holidays.