Healthcare Interpretation Courses

COURSE SEQUENCE (16 credits):

To complete the Spanish/English Healthcare Interpretation support area, students must take five required courses and an internship. The courses are designed to enable students to develop the necessary skills and abilities to demonstrate the program outcomes.

Prior to being admitted into the program, students must first provide evidence of near-native proficiency in Spanish and English by means of the bilingual proficiency assessment (SPI-100), available in the Assessment Center.


SPI 210: Bilingual Medical Terminology  (3 credits)

This first course in the two course series will focus on the acquisition or expansion of a specialized vocabulary and technical terminology relevant to the field of health care interpreting. It will introduce the student to the prevalent modes of interpreting in health care which include the techniques of sight, consecutive and simultaneous interpretation. Students will develop improved listening skills required for effective interpreting as well as participate in drills that will help increase recall and short-term memory. This course will also address other parameters that affect effective communication in interpreter-mediated events such as the positioning of the interpreter, shifting register, his/her involvement or non-involvement, issues of confidentiality, advocacy, the interpretation of emotive and non-verbal language, as well as cultural issues.

SPI 310: Cultural Competence in Healthcare: The Latino Perspective  (2 credits)        

The course focuses on the theoretical frameworks defining culture, cultural competence and cultural proficiency, examines the CLAS standards (Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Standards in Health Care) from the federal Office of Minority Health, discusses diversity and immigration in the United States, and present issues in the transcultural communication. The final portion of the course focuses specifically on the Latino culture and health care as it relates to the issues previously presented.

SPI 360: Translation Skills for Healthcare Interpreters  (3 credits)

The course focuses on language skills necessary for translation, which is defined as the rendering of written text from a source language into a target language. Interpreting, however, consists of the oral rendition of a source language into a target language. Although the support focuses on the latter, there is an increasing demand for interpreters with strong translation skills, and students can adapt many of these concepts when working on translation in other disciplines. This course will review current grammar rules in English and Spanish, as well as present students with an opportunity to develop the ability to identify audience, style, tone and register, and the role each of these has in written communication. Through practice and an introduction to the challenges that translators face, students will problem-solve difficult linguistic constructions while refining their writing skills as they work to translate and edit medical texts from Spanish to English and English to Spanish within the framework of their role as a medical interpreter.

SPI 483: Healthcare Interpreter Internship  (2 credits)

In this course, the student participates in field experience that allows her to further develop the skills that she has learned in the coursework completed as part of the Spanish/English Healthcare Interpretation (SPI) support area. She works under the direction of mentoring professionals in a health care setting to shadow and later interpret for patients during an individual field placement at a local health care organization. Students will meet with the instructor at different points during the semester, as well as complete reflective assignments. The student will effectively transfer the skills she obtained in the classroom to a real-world work environment.


SPI 310: Cultural Competence in Healthcare: The Latino Perspective  (2 credits)     
SPI 320: Advanced Interpretive Practice  (3 credits)

This second course in the two course series for students in the Spanish/English Health Care Interpretation Support Area will focus on aspects of interpretive theory and practice drills and simulations designed to approximate as closely as possible the challenges faced by medical interpreters. These simulations will incorporate sight, consecutive, and simultaneous interpretation drills from English to Spanish and vice-versa. These simulations will expose the student to a variety of interpreting settings that they might encounter: hospitals, clinics, doctors' offices, mental health facilities, etc. They will use their developing expertise in Spanish health care terminology and their awareness of cultural issues in health care to analyze and respond to the interpretive issues raised in these settings.

SPI 350: Ethics for Healthcare Interpreters  (3 credits)

This course is designed to prepare the student for the significant ethical challenges she will meet in her practicum experiences and in her profession. In this course students will examine the kinds of professional ethical issues most commonly encountered in the field of interpreting, and include in its outcomes objectives of impartiality, respect, confidentiality, role boundaries, professionalism, and advocacy.

SPI 483: Healthcare Interpreter Internship  (3 credits)



Optional Short-Term Study Abroad Course:

SPI 310-02: Cultural Competence in Healthcare: The Latino Perspective (Ecuador) (Spring rotation; 2 cr.)

 jungle group

Spring 2012 STSA to Ecuador