Note: This program is not being offered in the Summer 2017 semester.
The United States has entered a new multilingual world order: nearly one in two Americans in the 2014 Census report identified themselves as speakers of languages other than English, many of whom limited English proficiency (LEP). Meanwhile, extensive studies have established that the use of professional medical interpreters makes a critical impact on LEP patients and the health industry as a whole. Patients receive quicker, more accurate, and higher-quality healthcare services; providers deliver services more efficiently and effectively; and greater satisfaction is achieved overall when medical interpretation is used in the healthcare setting.
The Professional Diploma in Medical Interpreting (Mandarin Chinese/English) provides a comprehensive training program to prepare participants to serve as interpreters in the day-to-day encounters of critical point-of-care delivery—from ambulance and emergency bedside attendance to ICU staff support, hospice care, and patient-family mediation. In this one-semester, blended (mix of online and in-person) diploma, students receive a thorough grounding in medical terminology, the healthcare interpreter’s code of ethics, and the rights and responsibilities pertaining to patient-provider relations. The program explores cross-cultural perspectives on health services, and students undergo practical training both online and on-site in the mechanics of consecutive, verbatim, summary, and modular interpreting and sight translation. As part of the course work, program participants build a personal portfolio comprising a glossary of medical terms, a medical interpreter’s journal, and a personal audio work sample. At the culmination of the program, participants present a patient case study and take a final exam, which serves as preparation for further CMI or CHI certification. (See the International Medical Interpreters Association for details on CMI and CHI.)
Note: A language proficiency test is required for admission to this diploma.
The work product for this diploma is delivered through Course Modules 1, 2, and 3 in three parts: a glossary of medical terms, a medical interpreter’s journal, and a patient case study work sample. Together, these three requirements will constitute the student’s professional portfolio and will be accessible to future employers on an e-portfolio platform. Based upon, and in step with, the concepts and terminology covered in Module 1, students will compile a starter glossary in print and digital format that may be uploaded onto a shared platform for instructor evaluation. It is understood that, as a professional resource, this glossary is to be updated and expanded upon throughout the interpreter’s career. Midway through Module 1 and continuing into Module 2, the student will develop a medical interpreter’s journal documenting linguistic, ethical, and other issues encountered in the practice of interpreting. It is understood that this journal will itself be a learning exercise in self-assessment of practice interpreting. Midway through Module 2 and continuing into Module 3, students will create a patient case study work sample comprising Part I) a field interview report detailing the patient’s medical profile, prognosis, and diagnostic/care history and Part II) an improvised interpreting role-play performance based upon this case, of which five minutes will be recorded and delivered as the required work sample. The glossary and journal will serve as lifelong professional tools for the practicing interpreter. The patient case study work sample will demonstrate the student’s learned skills in medical interpreting, as well as the ability to sustain thoughtful and critical engagement with authentic human subjects in healthcare. Together, the three requirements described will form an integral work product for the Diploma that is presentable to future employers in print and digital formats.
- Consecutive interpreting skills, such as rapid recall, precise match, and paraphrase strategies, to use for interpreting medical terminology and complex instructions from English into Chinese, and conversely, for deciphering and rendering high-context (culturally embedded) messaging from Chinese into English
- The ability to read and understand documents in English in order to sight translate orally into Chinese
- The ability to discern cultural and status dynamic between LEP patients and healthcare providers and to implement appropriate communicative solutions to promote trust and understanding
- Medical/Clinical Interpreter
- Bilingual Physician Assistant
- Bilingual RN Assistant
- Patient Advocate
- Community Health Center Coordinator
You'll Walk Away With
- The ability to interpret accurately between English and Chinese in critical point-of-care encounters between Chinese-speaking patients and healthcare providers at all levels
- The ability to interpret appropriately and sensitively based upon an informed perspective on cultural assumptions, verbal and nonverbal cues, and other tacit differences in speech habits
- Effective dramaturgical tools and strategies (staging, cuing, verbal shadowing, note-taking, breaking down, and cutting in) when managing and delivering verbal interpretation
- Knowledge of healthcare terminology and the basic research skills to keep this knowledge current in the course of interpreting myriad medical encounters
- Best practices in interpreting, based upon the healthcare interpreter's code of ethics and knowledge of patient-provider rights and responsibilities