Working With Interpreters 

//Working With Interpreters 
Working With Interpreters 2017-11-06T20:48:04+00:00

Working With Interpreters 

Professionally trained interpreters increases client outcomes and satisfaction with services they receive. It is not advisable to use children or family members as interpreters, except for general communication — scheduling, explaining rules, etc. There are steps you can take before, during and after sessions to maximize the effectiveness of interpretation services. For more detailed information, see the Medical Interpreting Standards of Practice.

Tips For Working With Interpreters

  • 01

    BEFORE YOUR SESSION

    • Identify and develop relationships with interpreters in your area who speak the most common languages among your clients.
    • Be transparent. Outline the goals and structure of the session, let your interpreter know what you expect of them, explain the need for verbatim interpretation and stress the need for confidentiality.
    • Build time into your session to allow for briefing and debriefing the interpreter. Allow ample time during the session for interpretation.
    • Clarify time commitment and service fees.

     

  • 02

    DURING YOUR SESSION

    • Introduce yourself and have the interpreter introduce themself.
    • Reiterate the need for verbatim interpretation.
    • Talk directly to your client — not the interpreter.
    • Maintain good eye contact with the client and be mindful of your nonverbal communication while the interpreter is conveying your message. Your body language and tone of voice will help establish trust.
    • Speak at a moderate pace in short, direct sentences. Be prepared to repeat yourself using different phrasing.
    • Avoid slang and idioms. Use simple language.
    • Ask the client to explain information back to you to ensure understanding.
    • Avoid side conversations with the interpreter and do not talk about the client in their presence.
  • 03

    AFTER YOUR SESSION

    • Provide feedback about the session and performance to your interpreter.
    • Debrief on emotional or trauma-related issues.
  • 04

    GENERAL TIPS

    • Try to use the same interpreter for ongoing sessions with a client, if possible.
    • Designate funds in your budget for interpreters and advocate for their use in your organization.

Best Practices For Working With Providers

Tips For Working With Interpreters

BEFORE YOUR SESSION

  • Identify and develop relationships with interpreters in your area who speak the most common languages among your clients.
  • Be transparent. Outline the goals and structure of the session, let your interpreter know what you expect of them, explain the need for verbatim interpretation and stress the need for confidentiality.
  • Build time into your session to allow for briefing and debriefing the interpreter. Allow ample time during the session for interpretation.
  • Clarify time commitment and service fees.

DURING YOUR SESSION

  • Introduce yourself and have the interpreter introduce themself.
  • Reiterate the need for verbatim interpretation.
  • Talk directly to your client — not the interpreter.
  • Maintain good eye contact with the client and be mindful of your nonverbal communication while the interpreter is conveying your message. Your body language and tone of voice will help establish trust.
  • Speak at a moderate pace in short, direct sentences. Be prepared to repeat yourself using different phrasing.
  • Avoid slang and idioms. Use simple language.
  • Ask the client to explain information back to you to ensure understanding.
  • Avoid side conversations with the interpreter and do not talk about the client in their presence.

AFTER YOUR SESSION

  • Provide feedback about the session and performance to your interpreter.
  • Debrief on emotional or trauma-related issues.

GENERAL TIPS

  • Try to use the same interpreter for ongoing sessions with a client, if possible.
  • Designate funds in your budget for interpreters and advocate for their use in your organization.

Best Practices For Working With Providers