Sign Language Interpreting and Translation (Level 6 Diploma)


Please note: due to COVID-19 all information on this page regarding dates is subject to change. We hope that the course can still go ahead in January 2021
After running our Next Step to Interpreting for 7 years, Signature have announced a NEW Interpreting course that offers the elements of both the Next Step and Interpreting NVQ in one course. The Level 6 Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting and Translation allows both Deaf and Hearing students the opportunity to train as a BSL/English Interpreter, a Translator or a Relay Interpreter.
In order to progress to Part 2 of the course, students must pass Part 1.

*Sign for Thoughts are really excited to be launching Part 1 of this course in January 2021, and Part 2 following this.

We will have an Interview and Selection day for Part 1 in late 2020. To book your place on this day you must fill out our enrolment form. Please ensure you have read the Terms & Conditions, and requirements of the day before enrolling.

Enrol Now!

If you have any questions that aren't answered on this page, or you wish to arrange an informal chat with Centre Director, Penny, please Contact Us

Part 1 - Theories and principles in Interpreting and Translation

Part 2 - Undertake professional Interpreting and Translation assignments

Qualification Structure

This part of the course focuses on the theory of Interpreting, Translation and Relay interpreting. There are four learning outcomes:

  • Analyse and evaluate key theories and principles in interpreting and translation.
  • Maintain skills and systems for interpreting and translation tasks.
  • Prepare for interpreting and translation assignments.
  • Plan and implement continuous professional development.

We aim to provide a hands-on approach to the theory of interpreting, through our teaching methods, styles and classroom environment.

This is a taught course providing a framework within which to learn the theoretical skills and practical skills, both needed in the role of Sign Language Interpreter. Modules taught in the classroom cover all aspects of Interpreting and students are expected to enhance their learning outside of the classroom through self-study, continual assessment and reflection. 

This course will aid people who work as CSWs and can be a springboard to becoming a Trainee Interpreter (TI) It provides the knowledge and skills needed to work in these roles.

There are 5 assessment titles. Four are internally assessed, and one is externally assessed. Further details of the assessments can be found in the Signature specification

  • Essay (Can be written or in structured BSL) - title set by Signature, externally assessed.
  • Business plan - internally assessed.
  • Glossary - internally assessed.
  • Preparing for interpreting and translation assignments (Can be written or in structured BSL) - internally assessed.
  • Professional Development Plan - internally assessed.

Part 2 covers the practical skills required for professional interpreting and translation, it is divided into four 'streams'. Sign for Thoughts will be offering 3 out of the 4 streams available.

Stream 1: Interpret between a spoken and a signed language.
Stream 2: not offered.
Stream 3: Interpret within the same signed language.
Stream 4: Translate between a written and a signed language.

There are five learning outcomes:

  • Carry out interpreting tasks as a professional interpreter.
  • Work as part of a team of professional interpreters and translators.
  • Use technology effectively to perform remote interpreting assignments.
  • Carry out translation tasks as a professional translator.
  • Evaluate performance as a professional interpreter or translator.

There are 12 assessments for all streams. Six are internally assessed and six are externally assessed. Further details of the assessments can be found in the Signature specification

The full specification for this course can be found here on Signature's website.

Why choose us?

Our purpose built training suite is ideally situated within easy access of the M3 and is only 40 minutes on the train from London. We care about our students and we will support you every step of the way throughout your BSL journey. Our tutors and assessors are extremely talented in their field and have many years of experience behind them. Our 12 years delivering high quality teaching has given us a good reputation with students and the Deaf community alike.

Sign for Thoughts prides itself on being a deaf-led Centre, ensuring learning is engaging and fun whilst maintaining our high standards. Our ethos has always been 'With Sign Language we can open up the world with wonderful communication, where Deaf, Deafblind and Hearing communities warmly welcome each other, and lifelong friendships can be made'. We have a strong network of Deaf role models, and are able to offer our students appropriate opportunities to expand their knowledge and experiences.

"The pace was good, the feedback was AMAZING and other centres can't compete, I just wish I knew about SFT years ago! I'll miss you all."
"it is nice to have a Deaf and hearing perspective from the teaching"

So, how does it work?

Part 1 will run over Fridays and Saturdays, once a month. The classes will run from 10am-4pm. The course will run from January 2021 - Autumn 2021.
There will be an interview and selection day in Autumn 2020. This is essential to getting a place on the course, and will involve an overview of the course, a short interview with our course tutors, and an assessment of skills. All participants of the day will receive feedback for their reference.

Places are filling up fast for our Interview and Selection day, enrol ASAP to avoid disappointment.

We are still working to make Part 2 perfect! Keep an eye on our website for more details on the dates and times of Part 2. If you would like to be the first to know, get in contact with us.

Course Costs

All course costs are still to be confirmed. To get an estimate, please contact us.

Course fees are subject to change

Payment of fees by instalments may be agreed upon arrangement.

All course costs are still to be confirmed. To get an estimate, please contact us.

Course fees are subject to change

Payment of fees by instalments may be agreed upon arrangement.