Content Areas

The Content Areas in which interpreters/ transliterators can receive Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are divided into two categories: Professional Studies (linguistic and cultural studies; theoretical and experiential studies; specialization studies) and General Studies (human service and leadership; general knowledge studies). In determining the Content Areas, the RID Professional Development Committee (PDC) considered the recommended standards in the curriculum section of the Conference of Interpreter Trainers’ (CIT) Educational Standards Package.


Professional Studies
Professional Studies contain content that directly applies or affects the field of interpreting/
transliterating. These are areas of investigation that enhance the interpreting process regardless of
the setting. They are studies that deepen the member’s ability to provide excellence through their
work. A minimum of 6.0 CEUs must be completed in this section during each Certification
Maintenance Cycle. Examples of Professional Studies topics include, but are not limited to:

1. Advanced studies of language, culture, and human behavior: Languaculture; intracultural
and intercultural dynamics; and linguistic systems. Examples include but are in no way
limited to:

  • Studies of Language and Linguistics
    • Structure of ASL
    • Phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics
    • Language variation and language change
    • Sociolinguistics
    • Language and power
    • Language and cognition
    • Language Studies
      • Advanced English development (specialized vocabulary, grammar
        development, analysis of linguistic register, etc.)
      • Advanced ASL development (specialized vocabulary, grammar
        development, analysis of linguistic register, etc.)
      • Other advanced languages studies: e.g., Spanish, Japanese, Langue des
        Signes Francaise (LSF), Deutsche Gebärdensprache (DGS)
  • Languaculture and Cultural Studies (Note: languaculture refers to language
    mechanics and the use of language, including cultural components that inform the
    use of language, such as history and traditions. Term attributed to anthropologist
    Michael Agar.)

    • Intracultural dynamics
      • Communication studies (e.g., interpersonal communication)
      • Studies of group dynamics
      • Language as power
    • Cultural Studies
      • Deaf culture
      • American culture
      • Religious Studies
    • Intercultural dynamics
      • Studies of power, privilege and bias
      • Studies of social justice
      • Cross-cultural studies
      • Minority group dynamics
      • Language domination, suppression and elevation

2. Theoretical and Experiential Studies: The process of interpreting/transliterating through
the direct application of systems of principles, philosophy, ideas or concepts. Examples

  • History and issues in interpretation and transliteration
  • Theory of interpretation and transliteration
  • Skills development in interpretation and/or transliteration
  • Skills development in consecutive and simultaneous interpretation
  • Professional ethics, etc.

3. Specialization Studies: Huge growth of the interpreting field has led many interpreters to
specialize or focus in one or two settings of specialty. Commonly these are areas such as
medical or mental healthcare, legal work or work in education at the K-12 level or in
post-secondary settings. This requires interpreters to build competence and knowledge in
areas of expanded technical vocabulary or systems knowledge that is not common or
generally necessary for the generalist interpreter. Building skills in more narrowly
focused areas within the broader field of interpreting or transliterating. Documentation
must be present detailing the way in which the activity relates to the development of
interpreting skills in that particular field or setting. Examples include aspects of:

  • Educational settings (e.g., philosophies of Deaf education, graduate research
    strategies )
  • Rehabilitation settings
  • Legal settings (e.g., courtroom protocol, mediation law)
  • Medical or mental health settings (e.g. medical terminology, anatomy & physiologyin ASL and English)
  • Substance abuse recovery programs
  • Technical areas
  • Ethics as applied in specialized settings, etc.

General Studies

General Studies include topics that enhance the interpreter/transliterator’s base of general or
world knowledge. The study must still be a legitimate educational program with clearly defined
educational goals and measurable objectives. There are no minimum requirements for CEUs in
this category, however, only two (2) of the eight (8) required CEUs will be counted toward
certification maintenance.


Source:RID Standards and Criteria

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