thebigword, the world top-12 language services company, has given its backing to new online training courses for Public Service Interpreters developed by Leeds Metropolitan University and the International School of Linguists, a training and testing partner of thebigword.

The courses will help meet the increasing demand for professional interpreters who work alongside public sector bodies such as the NHS, Department for Work and Pensions, Probation Services, Police and Border controls.  Delivered on an online platform, the courses enable linguists to work in their own time and at their own pace, supported by tutors.

The four courses lead to a Diploma and Advanced Diploma in Public Service Interpreting, equivalent to Degree and Masters level.  Leeds Metropolitan University worked with the International School of Linguists (ISL) to create the first two levels.  Leeds Metropolitan has created two further levels and is using ISL’s online virtual learning environment to host them.

Nuala Murphy, General Manager – Interpreting Services at thebigword, says: “thebigword is pleased to endorse these qualifications which, in our view, academically match and even go beyond the existing Diploma in Public Sector Interpreting.  Accuracy and professionalism are vital in public sector interpreting where people’s ability to access work, their liberty and even their lives can be at stake.”

Graham Webb of the School of Languages at Leeds Metropolitan University said: “We are delighted that such a major organisation as thebigword has recognised our courses as providing high quality professional interpreters for the Public Service sector.   As our courses are delivered flexibly and for all language combinations they enable linguists to train and get a qualification that will help them gain employment as professional interpreters”.

Full details of the new courses can be found at: http://leedsmet.ac.uk/interpreting