ASL Interpreter Certification

ASL Interpreter Certifications Offered by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf


The major certification that is offered by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf is call National Interpreter Certification, normally referred to as “NIC.” Currently, to qualify to take this test, one must possess a four-year bachelor’s degree. The test is composed of two parts. The first part is a knowledge test which tests the interpreter’s knowledge of the interpreting field. After passing the written knowledge test, the interpreter can then take the performance test which is video recorded and tests the interpreter’s ability to voice and sign interpret. In addition, the performance test includes an interview section in which the interpreter is asked to evaluate several possible ethical dilemmas. Previous certifications offered or recognized by RID that indicate similar skill level include CI/CT, IC/IT, CSC, and NAD


An interpreter possessing NIC or a previous national certification approved by RID can then try to obtain the Specialist Certificate: Legal certification or “SC:L.” This is currently the only specialist certificate that is offered by RID, and, as the name implies, certifies an interpreter for work in the legal field. The test, similar to the NIC, includes both a written and performance section.


Certified Deaf Interpreter certification or “CDI” is a certification offered to deaf people. One can look here to see the workshops that are required to be taken to qualify for this certification. This test also includes both a written knowledge section and a performance section.

ASL Interpreter Certification Offered by Boystown NRH

Boystown National Research Hospital currently offers a certification for educational interpreters called “EIPA.” It is comprised of two sections, a written knowledge test and a performance exam. Scores for this exam can range from a 0 to 5 with most states requiring at least a 3.0 or 3.5 on the exam to be recognized as educationally certified.

ASL Interpreter Certifications offered at the State Level

Many states offer a quality assurance screening with different scoring systems in order to gauge an interpreter’s skill level. Requirements to take the test and testing content vary from state to state, so it is best to consult one’s state RID chapter to find out if a QA is offered and what the testing process is.


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