Spanish/English Interpretation { College of Extended Learning }

Image: Photographs of Spanish/English Interpretation students and their teacher.

Spanish/English Interpretation (Legal/Court)
Academic Credit Certificate

"So the Truth is Not Lost in Translation"
"Para que la Verdad no se Pierda en la Traducción"


Photo: Eric Bishop

New! Online Courses

The SF State Spanish/English Interpretation certificate program now offers online courses.

Spanish/English Interpretation Certificate Education

The Bay Area's premier interpreter training program, specializing in preparing students for the CA Court Bilingual Interpreter Exam, and the National Center for State Courts (Consortium) Exam

This academic certificate program is designed to develop the interpreting skills necessary for service as a Spanish/English interpreter in the courts, in state agencies, and in the medical evaluation system of workers' compensation. It is specifically designed to prepare participants to pass the State of California Court Interpreter Certification Exam. The program faculty are state-certified court interpreters.

Why Choose the SF State Interpretation Program?

  • High academic standards
  • Quality instructors with real life experience
  • Access to iLearn online technology
  • Rigorous entrance requirements
  • Language Lab

Spanish/English Interpretation Brochure

Download the brochure for this program.

What Students Are Saying

"The SF State program was a great investment. It prepared me very well to pass the court exam and bring my interpreting career up to the next level. The teachers were an excellent resource - they helped us learn in a friendly and collaborative environment, and that makes all the difference because a positive attitude is crucial. I highly recommend the SF State program to anyone who is serious about legal interpreting."

- Curtis Draves

" I’m living proof of what the SF State Spanish/English Legal/Court Interpretation can do for you. I’ve been working in California Superior Courts since December of 2011, and I can confidently say I never would have made it if it hadn’t been for this program.
Interpreting is a lot more challenging than most people realize. Anyone who wants to work as court/legal interpreter in California, Oregon, Texas, or any of almost two dozen other states must pass a two-part “consortium” test that continues to have one of the lowest pass rates of any professional state certification exam in the country - and for good reason.
Although more and more interpreting programs have been popping up to meet a growing demand, few have the proven track record that SF State’s has. I’ve run across more certified court interpreters who have gone through this program than any other. The professors all have at least a decade of real-world experience interpreting in the courts and are among the very best in the field. (Indeed, every single one of my teachers was absolutely excellent, as were the curricula and classroom materials.)
These days, you may very well find programs that are cheaper, but they’re probably newer and most likely will not provide you with the quality of instruction you need to actually make it in the legal interpreting field. SF State’s is worth the investment, hands down."

- Camille T. Taiara

Financial Aid

SF State Extended Learning receives no state money to support its programs; therefore, Federal Financial aid is extremely limited. In order to be eligible for Federal Financial Aid, you must have completed 60 units or 90 quarter units, plus the Bilingual Exam prior to your acceptance into the program. Financial aid is only available in the fall and spring semesters. Students should start the financial aid application process as soon as possible. Note: Financial Aid is not available in your first semester of this program.

For further information, see our financial aid section, and go to the SF State Financial Aid site. For Financial Aid questions, please contact Milly Mohr at 415.338.2765 or
Students who don't qualify for Federal Financial aid or have conditional acceptance into the program, can finance their program through the Alternative Loan Program.

Program Data Disclosure

The U.S. Department of Education requires that we disclose the information below for this financial aid-eligibile certificate program.

  • Occupations the Program Prepares Students to Enter: The Spanish/English Interpretation Program prepares students for positions as Interpreters and Translators (SOC code 27-3091). See the Occupational Outlook Handbook - Interpreters and Translators for more information about these positions.
  • Program Cost: For those entering the program as of the spring 2014 semester, the total cost of all six courses required to earn the certificate is approximately $3,582, plus a $50 non-refundable application fee. Fees are charged on a course-by-course basis each semester and are subject to change. Texts and elective courses are additional.
  • On-Time Completion Rate: The program is designed so participants can complete requirements in 17-22 months.
    For the 2011-12 academic year, 29 students earned a certificate in this program, and 22 of these students (76%) completed the program within 15-24 months.
  • Job Placement Rate: The job placement rate for students who completed the program in 2009-10, based on those graduates who responded to surveys sent by Extended Learning staff, is 47%.
  • Median Loan Debt: Based on data from 2012-13, the median Title IV loan debt for financial aid students in this certificate program was $5,382 and the average Title IV loan debt was $7,370. No students incurred a private educational loan debt for this program in 2012-13.
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