Interpretation and Translation (English/Spanish)

Professional Certificate in Interpretation and Translation (English/Spanish)

Professional Certificate in Interpretation and Translation (English/Spanish)

Classroom Program


10 months


UCR Extension

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Courtrooms, emergency rooms, schools, professional conferences - these are just a few of the settings where professional interpreters and translators apply their skills. More than just knowing the correct words to use, these experts must understand the fields in which they work, and have a firm grasp of the cultures involved. As language specialists, interpreters/translators serve as a crucial link between those who cannot understand English and those who serve them, accurately conveying information, concepts and ideas between languages.

Whether your interest in law, medicine, business, education, or immigration, UCR Extension's comprehensive certificate program prepares you to enter the professional field of interpreting and formal translation.

Attend a FREE Information Session Wednesday, June 20, 6-7 p.m.

Designed For

For individuals who are:

  • Professional interpreters and translators.
  • Considering a career in professional interpretation and translation.
  • Interested in becoming certified court interpreters and have a high level of bilingual fluency developed through formal education or from interpretation-related work experience.

What You'll Learn

  • All modes of interpretation
  • Spanish-to-English and English-to-Spanish vocabulary
  • Acquisition of specialized terminology
  • Translation skills used in criminal and civil court matters
  • Training in the development of listening and memory skills
  • Note-taking techniques
  • Public speaking

The program also provides preparation for examinations required for federal and state court interpretation and county agencies, as well as professional organizations.

What You Can Do With This Certificate

Positions are available in law, medicine, education, business and other professional areas, and can be found in private firms, government, or nonprofit organizations. They might include:

  • Bilingual Interpreter
  • Professional Interpreter

Program Overview


20 Units

Real People. Real Results.

“If you are bilingual, there is great potential in the translation field, but without the necessary tools and guidance, you'll have a very rough path to walk. By earning my professional certificate, and with special thanks to the amazing instructors, I learned the techniques needed to achieve my goals. I highly recommend this program.”

Perla Marquez

Professional Interpreter, Translator and Owner
Perla Mar Enterprises
Menifee, CA

Earning the Certificate

Prior to enrolling, please ensure that you meet the following minimum requirements:

  • Have completed two years of college-level work, or have prior approval from the department.
  • Take and pass a written and oral admissions exam.

Oral Admissions Exam Information:

On the day of the admissions exam, students need to submit the following (via flash drive or audio recorder):

  • Recording of a 2-3 minute reading selection in English from a newspaper or magazine article of your choice
  • Recording of an oral interpretation into Spanish of the same article
  • Recording of an autobiographical statement in your non-native language, no longer than 3 minutes

Admissions Exam

  • Students must successfully pass the qualifying admissions written exam to demonstrate mastery in both English and Spanish
  • Bring a bilingual dictionary
  • Bring pencils or pens

Program Timeline

  • Summer Quarter: Enroll in the Information Session and complete the Admissions Exam
  • Fall Quarter: Start the program

Also of Interest

This program is approved by the American Translators Association (ATA) and the International Medical Interpreters Association (IMIA). This program is listed on the CA Judicial Council Court Interpreters Program website.

For more information see How to Earn a Certificate

Certificate Courses

Our certificate programs are designed to be flexible, allowing you the option to take just a few courses or to earn the complete certificate. If choosing to complete the certificate, we recommend you get the most out of your experience by following the suggested completion path below.

Quarter 1

Professional Certificate in Interpretation and Translation - English/Spanish: Information Session

SPN 851.01

Qualifying Admission Exam for the Interpretation and Document Translation Programs

SPN 852.32

Quarter 2

The U.S. Court System: An Overview for Legal Interpreters

LAW X443

3 units

Introduction to Legal Interpretation

SPN X407

3 units

Quarter 3

Sight Translation: English to Spanish

SPN X404

4 units

Consecutive Interpretation

SPN X405

4 units

Quarter 4

Simultaneous Interpretation

SPN X404.5

4 units

Professional Interpreting: Protocol and Ethics

SPN X404.3

2 units

Instructor Spotlight

“I am a Court Interpreter for the Superior Court of California. I delight in my interpreting profession, and I certainly love to share my enthusiasm for it with my students. Teaching someone how to interpret means helping them learn and develop a very unique and complex skillset that encompasses performing different brain activities simultaneously. Successful interpreters must listen attentively, analyze, translate, and speak--all at the same time!”

Claudia Revelo

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