I have been an independent translator and interpreter since 1985. My goal is to help you communicate clearly with your target audience and present a professional image in either Spanish or English.
According to the FBI, only 40% of those who have the necessary language proficiency skills pass their translation test! Translation and interpretation involve specialized skills beyond language proficiency.
A translation is more than taking words from one language and putting them into another one. Since each language exists in the context of a culture, my goal is that the reader of the translation understand the same message as the reader of the original text. In other words, they shouldn’t sound like a translation.
When someone speaks two languages, we expect they can interpret. However, it’s more complicated than that. The meaning has to be transferred from one language to another language. It’s a little bit like playing the piano. Being able to play with one hand at a time is not that hard. Many people can get there with little help. However, playing with two hands requires special training, especially when both hands are working somewhat independently. Transferring meaning from one language to another, whether orally or in writing, requires special training.
In Oregon, medical interpreters are required to have 60 hours of training in medical interpreting in order to be Qualified or Certified. Certified interpreters must also pass an oral interpreting exam.
Gaucha Translations (now Gaucha TI) has designed and implemented a language neutral training program to meet this need. Students with years of experience have found that this training provides added insight and strengthens their skills. Ideally, class sizes will be limited to 20 students to provide optimal feedback to participants.
The medical terminology portion of this course has been approved for CE credits by CCHI and the NBCMI (both of the national certification boards for medical interpreters). Besides, interpreters with over 100 hours of training have an average of 2% errors, as compared to 22% errors with no training, regardless of years of experience. For comparison, the error rate for encounters with no interpreter is 20%.
Participants will be actively involved in interpreting role playing situations from the first day. Therefore, language proficiency is essential. Gaucha TI highly recommends that participants in the training be at the Advanced levels of the ACTFL scale. The National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters requires that medical interpreters have oral proficiency in both languages of Advanced Mid, as tested by Language Testing International, as a minimum. Remember, we can’t interpret what we don’t understand or can’t say...
In Spanish, a “gaucho” is a cowboy. However, in modern Argentine usage it is more than that. You do a “gauchada” (a favor) to a friend, expecting nothing in return. When you solve a problem creatively, you may be told “¡qué gaucho!” (What a “gaucho”!). Since I am a woman, I am a “gaucha”.
* Gaucha: creative problem solver, willing to go the extra mile.