This collection of frequently asked questions (FAQ) provides brief answers to many common questions about the Health Care Interpeting program. If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact us.
Getting Started - Admissions
Tuition and Payment Options
Do I need any medical experience in order to complete this program?
No, while some knowledge of medical terminology may be helpful this program covers medical terminology in both English and your target language. By the time you complete this program, you should have a working knowledge of basic medical terminology, concepts and structure.
Are there any textbooks required for the interpreting program?
Yes. Our programs use a variety of textbooks, online materials and readings. Any textbook requirements will be posted on the textbook section of the interpreting program description page.
What are the admission requirements for the program?
In order to apply for this program, you must:
How do you determine language proficiency?
We follow the Oregon Office of Inclusion and Equity guidelines for language proficiency. You can demonstrate language proficiency in your target language by:
This is considered a hybrid program because it is taught both online and in-person. Approximately 60% of the lessons are taught online and the remaining 40% are held in-person. The online classes are asynchronous which means they can be completed whenever you have some free time. The in-person classes consist of scenarios, role play exercises and in-person language labs.
WOU uses Moodle as our course management system. Each course is somewhat different in format, depending on the instructor's chosen course design and setup. For more information about our online courses, visit our Online Learning page.
We do expect students to be able to use basic word processing programs (i.e. Microsoft Word), as well as access Internet websites. WOU offers technical assistance in case you have any problems with your course. The majority of students find online classes easy to navigate and conducive to learning.
For most classes, you will only need an internet connection, a compatible browser, and a word processing program (i.e. Microsoft Word). Fortunately, most browsers are compatible. A few courses may require other programs and the instructor will give you that information at the beginning of class. For more information, click here: WOU Technical Requirements for computers .
How much does the program cost?
Program tuition is $999 (plus the cost of textbooks $150-200). Tuition can be paid all at once or in payments. Please refer to our Payment Options page to learn more about payment options.
Do I have to pay any tuition when I apply to the program?
No, you do not have to pay anything when you submit the online application. We will work out payment arrangements after you have been accepted to the program and tuition is due before you attend the first class.
Are there any scholarships available?
We don't offer any scholarships directly from WOU. But, if you live in Marion, Polk or Yamhill counties you may be eligible for the Job Growers, Inc. vocational scholarship. Check out our Payment Options page to learn more about this opportunity.
Can I get any Financial Aid to pay the tuition?
Unfortunately, no. Since this is a non-credit program you cannot apply for federal student aid to cover the cost of tuition. We do have several payment options available and they are listed on our Payment Options page.
What languages are included in this program?
We currently offer medical interpreter training for Spanish and Russian speakers. We plan to add Arabic and Mandarin in the near future and are open to adding other languages as needed.
In what language is the program taught?
The majority of our program is taught in English. The only portions of the program which are taught in your target language are the medical terminology and cultural competency sections. But, even these sections are taught in English as well as the target language.
Will you help me find work as an interpreter after completing this program?
While many areas are experiencing a shortage of professional interpreters, we cannot guarantee employment after completing this program. However, toward the end of each program section we will be holding a mini “job fair” with area interpreting employers and help make networking connections.
Will I be certified after completing this course?
No. After completing this program, you will receive a Certificate of Completion from Western Oregon University. This means you can say you are a "trained" interpreter but you cannot say you are certified. This program is designed to give you the basic skills necessary to succeed as a health care interpreter. After completing this program, you should contact the Oregon Office of Equity and Inclusion to begin the process of being qualified and certified as a medical interpreter.
Open the original version of this page.