BSL/English Interpreters should be registered professionals. They work in a great many settings, for example legal, medical and education, to name just a few. They are qualified to work between two languages ensuring the meaning comes across as intended. The interpreter is the human aid to communication, but is not part of the conversation.
Certain interpreters will have more experience in particular areas i.e police settings or have specialist skills i.e Hands-On Interpreting working with Deaf visually impaired people.
Interpreters may co-work if an assignment is particularly challenging, lengthy or if there are many Deaf participants in attendance. This team support is invaluable for effective interpreting.
The most important thing an interpreter needs to know before the assignment is - What is the aim of this interaction?
It is really useful to provide preparation material/information to an interpreter before the assignment starts. This may come in many forms, but examples could be previous minutes for an AGM or a brief run down of what took place at the last medical appointment. It can also include notes sent in advance.
Other communication professional colleagues include:
- Deaf Interpreters/ Translators
- Deafblind Interpreters
- Speech to Text Reporters
- Communication Support Workers (CSW)