Get the skills needed to help doctors communicate with non-English speaking patients so they may ensure the best possible care.

In Madison College's Healthcare Interpreting (HCI) program, you'll work with trained healthcare interpreters who will prepare you for this rewarding career.

healthcare interpreter communicating with patients

HCI Program Overview

Madison College's Healthcare Interpreter Program is designed for speakers fluent in both Spanish and English who want to start a career as a healthcare interpreter. The certificate program will prepare and qualify you to take the Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters (CCHI) exam.

    HCI Career Outcomes

    After completing the program you will:

    • Be eligible to take the CCHI exam for national certification which will make you a competitive candidate for healthcare interpreting jobs.
    • Gain professional and networking knowledge from experts currently in the working field.
    • Develop high-level skills in consecutive and simultaneous interpreting.

    Why Madison College Professional and Continuing Education?

    • Learn from faculty who are experts and currently working in the field.
    • Highly available staff and faculty to help guide you and answer your questions.
    • Prepare for an in-demand, well-compensated career.

     Program Course Requirements

    Students should be fluent in both Spanish and English before starting classes and hold at least a high school diploma or equivalent.

    Academic Requirement

    Have a high school diploma or equivalent

    Language Requirement

    Be fluent in both Spanish and English
    Pass an oral assessment in the target language with a score of 9 or above

    Academic Schedule

    • Students in the Healthcare Interpreting program typically finish their courses within 1-2 semesters with 48 required course hours.
    • Classes are held once or twice a week in the evening or during the day on weekends to provide flexible scheduling for non-traditional students.
    • HCI classes may be offered at Madison College's Truax and Goodman South campuses.

    Healthcare Interpreting Courses

    Pre-Program Courses

    Introduction to Healthcare Interpreting | $29 (Required)

    Are you bilingual? Have you ever been curious about interpreting, or particularly in the healthcare field? Join us for an over view of the profession of medical interpretation. You just might find a whole new career for your set of skills!
    This is offered 100% online as a self-paced module. Estimated time to complete: 45 minutes - 1 hour.

    Spanish for Spanish Speakers | $199 

    This advanced Spanish class will help you improve your Spanish language skills whether you learned the language in school or at home. Topics will include grammar (verb tenses), spelling (accents), reading comprehension, and writing. Vocabulary practice will be focused on healthcare terminology.
    #63309, Goodman South, 1/30-3/6, Monday, 6-8:30 PM

    Medical Terminology in Spanish | $210

    This course is intended for healthcare professionals or interpreters working with Spanish-speaking patients but is open to anyone. It focuses on medical technical language in both English and Spanish. Students gain increased familiarity with medical terminology will be presented according to body systems, clinical specialties, and sub specialties. The student will master both vocabulary and knowledge for a wide number of medical settings.
    #63351, Goodman South, 3/20-5/8, Monday, 6-8:30 PM

    HCI Oral Proficiency Assessment | $63

    Students must be fluent in both Spanish and English to take HCI courses.
    Students must pass an oral assessment in the target language with a score of 9 or above
    It may take 1-2 days to process your request form and we will send the assessment to your email.

    Program Courses

    Healthcare Interpreting Skills 1 | $315

    This course is designed to teach new interpreters how to interpret consecutively in a medical setting. Emphasis will be placed on learning consecutive technique, expanding medical vocabulary in both English and the target language, and learning how to manage the flow of conversation in the encounter participants will work extensively in small groups practicing with dialogues based on real-life medical encounters. 
    #63308, Goodman South, 1/24-3/2, Tuesday and Thursday, 6-8 PM

    Healthcare Interpreting Skills 2 | $315

    This course is designed to build on the skills new interpreters have acquired in Healthcare Interpreting Skills 1. Emphasis will be placed on learned how to intervene and clarify appropriately acquiring more advanced medical vocabulary in both English and the target language. Learn how to manage the flow of conversation when difficulties arise and participants will work extensively in small groups practicing with dialogues based on real-life medical encounters. This builds on the skills acquired in HCI Skills 1.
    #63352, Goodman South, 3/21-4/27, Tuesday and Thursday, 6-8 PM

    Healthcare Interpreter Ethics | $99

    More in-depth training about interpreter ethics for the working medical interpreter. Emphasis will be placed on discussion on case studies and the development of critical thinking to make informed choices about the best course of actions.
    #63684, Goodman South, 3/7-3/9, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, 6-8:40 PM

    Post-Program Courses for Professionals

    Healthcare Interpreter: Simultaneous Interpretation Seminar | $59

    Join us as we explore simultaneous interpretation and get the practice you need to become more comfortable with this style. All levels of experience are welcome. This class fulfills performance-based credits to renew certification.
    Future offerings will be posted here.

    HCI:Translation Seminar | $69

    This seminar will show the art of translation from the dual perspectives of theory and practice. We will define and show differences between translation and interpretation. We will be practicing various translation strategies and using particular techniques. Some of the topics we will cover include textual and contextual meaning, culture, text types, and dialect.
    #63867, Goodman South, 4/29, Saturday, 9:45 AM-12:45 PM

    Get Started!

    HCI Program Admission

    There is no formal application; simply register for classes. Once you complete the required courses, you can request your certificate.

    If you have any questions about the program or how to get started, please contact Jenn Sheppard:

    Contact Professional and Continuing Education

    Madison Truax Campus
    Community and Industry Education Center

    1835 Wright Street
    Madison, WI 53704

    Mailing Address
    1701 Wright Street
    Madison, WI 53707

    608.258.2301, Option 2
    855.473.2301, Option 2

    Office Hours

    • Monday-Thursday: 8 am - 4 pm
    • Friday: 8 am - 12 pm

    Phone Service Hours

    • Monday-Thursday: 8 am - 6 pm
    • Friday: 8 am - 4 pm