Medical Interpreting (English - Spanish)
Medical interpreting is a rapidly expanding field as more hospitals and other health industry services opt to provide language services to improve care and efficiency. As a collaborative endeavor between doctor, patient and interpreter, medical interpreting complements and contrasts with the more widely studied legal interpreting. CSULA Extension's classes are designed to prepare the student for medical-field work as a Spanish - English medical interpreter in inpatient and outpatient settings.
The first class introduces students to the fundamental techniques and practice of translation and interpreting, including consecutive and simultaneous interpreting, and sight translation. The class presents basic medical vocabulary in English and Spanish and reviews grammatical and other structural differences between the two languages. Written and oral practice and reading comprehension exercises with medical vocabulary are included. The second class continues to develop these skills while also orienting students to the various forms of exam certification which exist in this field.
The instructor, Dr. Soraya Alamdari (PhD, UCLA; CMI-Spanish), is a certified medical interpreter and an experienced professor of Spanish who has taught at several universities in California and on the East coast.
Both classes use Holly Mikkelson's The Interpreter’s Rx, the leading textbook in the field. It costs about $60, includes 3 CDs with practice scripts, and covers consecutive and simultaneous interpreting and sight translation.
Who Can Enroll?
Any interested Spanish-English bilingual, or health worker with a strong working knowledge and use of Spanish can enroll in the introductory medical interpreting class. The introductory class is the pre-req for the intermediate class.
The current cost is $150 per unit. The ML 794A and 794B classes are each 4 units so the current fee is $600.
The beginner class is offered Fall and Spring, and the advanced class Winter and Summer. Classes are Saturdays from 1:00 p.m. to to 4:00 p.m. for 11 sessions (total 44 hours), and follow the CSULA quarter schedule
(Apr 6 - Jun 15)
(Jun 29 - Sept 7)
(Sept 21 - Dec 7)
(Jan 11 - Mar 22)
|ML 794A, Introduction to Medical Interpreting||ML 794B, Intermediate Medical Interpreting||ML 794A, Introduction to Medical Interpreting||ML 794B, Intermediate Medical Interpreting|
Medical Interpreting classes at CSULA - FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Two courses are offered: Introduction to Medical Interpretation (Fall and Spring quarters) and Intermediate Medical Interpretation (Winter and Summer quarters).
The Introduction course is an overview of the field, including fundamental techniques, vocabulary and skill building, and a discussion of ethical standards and best practices of the profession as well as national certification exams. The Advanced course is focused on more skill building and practice and gives more direct preparation practice for the respective certification exams. The beginner class is a prerequisite for the intermediate class.
You receive a Letter grade (A, B+, B, B-, etc.), which lists on your official CSULA transcript
Yes. Each course is for academic credit and as such lists on a transcript with a unit count and grade. The particular type of credit is 'professional advancement' rather than 'degree program' such as B.A., B.S., M.A., etc.
Neither class is required in, or count toward the L.I.T. Certificate core sequence. They can be taken by L.I.T. students as a complement, or they can be taken as a solo suite of courses by other bilingual persons interested in medical interpreting but not in legal interpreting. The skills overlap but are distinct.
No. These courses are meant to give students an introduction to the Medical Interpretation field and are not part of a certificate program such as CSULA's Legal Interpretation and Translation Certificate Program (L.I.T.).
No. These classes are educational and do not translate into any particular state license. They do orient and prepare you for the certification exams of national medical interpreter organizations.
Extension students are generally not eligible for Financial Aid. Student loans may be available through the CSULA Credit Union (323-505-2600), or other banks (start by asking at your own).
There are no formal admission requirements. The L.I.T. bilingual screening test is not required. Students should be English/Spanish bilinguals or have formally studied their non-native language at an advanced level. It is not crucial which is the stronger language for each individual.
Yes. A free orientation ('Open House') is held once or twice each quarter for the L.I.T. program; while mainly focused on the legal certificate program, these sessions include a short presentation on the medical classes by the professor and also describe the interpreting and translation industries and career opportunities, so are also a first stop for persons specifically interested in medical interpreting. For the Open House schedule, see below.
-- for general info on interpreting classes at CSULA, start at the L.I.T. program page, www.calstatela.edu/translate
-- for Open House info: start at the L.I.T. program page, www.calstatela.edu/translate and scroll down. Be sure to RSVP (use the email link on the page).
-- for more particular questions about program content, call the L.I.T. Coordinator at 323-343-4917
-- for schedule information, go to the CESIP main page and, on the Quick Links menu on the right, click on the Catalog link for the target quarter.
Contacts and linksGeneral information: LIT_Info@calstatela.edu
Coordinator: Piers Armstrong, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel. Direct (323) 343-4917
Registration: Call (323) 343-4900; Fax (323) 343-4954
California State University, Los Angeles
College of Extended Studies and International Programs
Contacts and links
Request information packet:
Email Piers Armstrong or
call (323) 343-4917
Call (323) 343-4900 Fax (323) 343-4954
- The form is for registration by mail or fax; it is not required if registering by phone.
- There is no online registration for these classes.