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IMIA Celebrates Its 25th Year Anniversary

Interpreter Testing

Would you like to evaluate your consecutive medical interpreting skills?

There are tests available to interpreters toassess their consecutive oral linguistic skills. The IMIA seeks to empower its members by informing them of the various products that are available in the market nationwide.

Benefits for Language Access Departments:

As a language access department, if your interpreters pass a commercial Interpreter Skills Test (third party validation of your interpreters' skills):

- you will be confident that your interpreters meet the linguistic proficiency and consecutive interpreting requirements for consecutive interpretation in most medical settings

- you will have validation from a recognized and objective source; 

- these test results are very valuable to preceptors as a diagnostic tool for practicums; 

- your morale will increase by your recognizing the differentiation between qualified tested interpreters and other bilingual individuals; 

- you will be compliant with the Joint Commission audits which meets and exceeds OCR guidelines and CLAS Standards; and

- you will lessen your department's liability and improve your organization's risk management.

As an interpreter:

- you will receive a certificate validating your skills and competency;
- you will further improve your skills;

- you will be more qualified to maintain or seek a position as an interpreter 

- if you don't pass, you will know which specific areas to work on for a future test retake

- All these commercial tests are conducted over the phone, when you are available, eliminating additional travel and accommodation costs

- Tests can be retaken at any time.

Language Proficiency Testing Options

In the past five years, the population that speak a language other than English has increased by over 7 million bringing the total to 52 million while the limited English speaking population has increased by almost 4 million, now at 23 million. These factors make language barriers a national concern for all health care organizations as quality of care and patient safety risks exist. Over the last few decades, interpreters have gained prominence to enable effective communication between providers and their patients with limited English proficiency (LEP). To see report please click here.


MasterWord Services

MasterWord Services is a company comprised of talented language and project management specialists who make quality priority. Our Training and Assessments Division is deeply invested in the success of those with whom we partner. What makes our assessments stand out? Several of the nation’s best hospital systems rely on MasterWord’s language proficiency and interpreter assessments: Their quality and ease of use. We make sure you have the right tool for the right job by matching you up with the assessments your organization needs.

Competencies tested: 
Listening Comprehension & Reading Comprehension
- Grammar
- Oral expression
- Medical terminology/ Health Care Terminology
- Interpreter Standards
- Consecutive Interpretation/ Sight Translation

For more information please go to:

The CyraCom Interpreter Skills Assessment provides an evaluation of a candidate's ability to interpret clinical encounters. CyraCom evaluates the candidate's knowledge of medical vocabulary and the ability to convert messages from one language to another accurately and completely. Assessments are available by telephone in more than 20 languages.

Competencies Tested:
- Delivery of accurate and complete medical interpretation
- Use of medical interpretation protocols and best practices
- Language proficiency in English and the other language
- Ability to interpret medical vocabulary

For more information please go to:

Language Line University
Language Line Services test is offered in 160+ languages including: Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Polish, Portuguese, Korean, Khmer, Arabic, German, French, Haitian Creole, Italian, Japanese, Vietnamese, Russian, Tagalog, Somali, Farsi, Serbian, Bosnian, Croatian, and Hmong. It is completed over the phone, with qualified proctors. The test simulates a short medical triadic encounter, where the testee plays the role of the medical interpreter.

Competencies tested:
- Language proficiency in both working languages
- Consecutive interpreting skills in a medical encounter
- Customer service skills

For more information please go to:

Pacific Interpreters
The Interpreter Skills Assessment evaluates the candidate's competency in English and the target language; ability to apply accepted interpreting skills, protocols and standards of practice; and knowledge of general medical terminology in both languages. The assessment is offered in more than 50 languages.

Competencies tested:
- Accuracy-ability to provide accurate, meaning-for-meaning first-person interpretation
- Listening and Recall-ability to retain and faithfully reproduce adequate amount of meaning units
- Appropriate Transparent Intervening-ability to request a repeat or a clarification when necessary in order to deliver an accurate interpretation
- Effective Speech Flow Control-ability to coordinate the pace and length of client's utterances with interpreter's short-term memory and language processing capacity

For more information please go to:

The National Center for Interpretation - University of Arizona

Since 1979, NCI has strived to ensure the rights of people with limited English proficiency here in the United States. In that time, we have trained and tested thousands of interpreters. The Medical Interpreter Competency Examination (MICE) allows employers to show that they take the needs of their client with limited proficiency in English seriously, and are doing all they can to ensure both equality and excellence.

Competencies tested:
- Consecutive Interpretation
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Medical Terminology
- Interpreter Ethics
- Sight Translation

For more information please go to:

Berkeley Language Institute

The Medical Interpreter Assessment tests cover interpreting skills through role-playing based on real life scenarios, sight translation, and knowledge of medical terminology in the foreign language, as well as cultural sensitivity of the interpreter. The evaluation also includes knowledge of professional ethics and protocols.

Competencies tested:
- Role Play: to simulate doctor, patient and interpreter interactions.
- Sight Translation: from English > Target language.
- Medical Terminology from English > Target language and vice versa.
- Definition of Medical Terms: English.
- Evaluation Report.

The 30-40 minute interpreter evaluation is conducted via telephone and is accompanied by a detailed evaluation report available within 48 hours. A certificate is provided upon successful completion of the evaluation.


Additional Documents

>Language Proficiency Testing Options Report (2002)

> Hablamos Juntos Language Testing Options (2007)

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