Conversant Interpreter: Real Solutions for your Interpreting and Training Needs

Training for Interpreters: All Levels

Angela Chenus

-a professional, consortium-certified French court interpreter; as well as a medical interpreter with extensive experience in all medical and mental health fields.

I was born in the United States. I am fully bilingual; I lived, studied and worked in France for fourteen years. I understand both cultures and both languages. Today, ninety percent of the clients I serve come from nations in Africa. For the past eight years, I have been learning about this community, their individual brands of French and their cultural diversity. I am fairly fluent in Canadian French as well.

Legal services, my specialty, include but are not limited to: court proceedings; civil, criminal, juvenile and family, immigration issues, depositions, insurance and patent law.

Expert consultation services:

Do you want to improve the way your staff works with interpreters?  Would you like to improve your interpreters’ skills? We provide consultation services and arbitration, as well as training for staff and/or interpreters.

Contact: email:

Phone: (563) 293-3494

*Certified, class A, by the National Center for State Courts, in Illinois and Iowa, with reciprocity in federal courts and most states.

The Interpreter Life

Gosh, I love my job! A phone call one day, in the middle of the Midwest, to ask if I would accept an interpreting assignment, changed my life. This was not an unplanned baby; I had studied languages, translation and history for years, preparing to become an interpreter, I just never thought it would happen now that I’d moved to Iowa.

Fast forward almost a decade; I am now a fully certified court interpreter label and a trained and highly experienced medical interpreter as well. I have created curriculum to train interpreters of all levels.

I fully appreciate the difference between “bilingual” and “interpreter” and one of my goals is to help interpreters reach a new level of professional standards. Our present and our future lies in coming together and working toward a common goal of doing what needs to be done to create better conditions for our clients, reach higher in our standards, and continually improve our skills.

Join us for articles, hints the latest vocabulary to know, and modern tools to make your work better and life easier.

Certification Resources

For interpreters interested in certification. Sources for exam prep, learning about prerequisites, practicing interpreting; both consecutive and simultaneous, codes of ethics for medical and legal interpreters, developing listening skills and professional organizations.


The National Center for State Courts is the body responsible for materials, testing and more for the certification of court interpreters:
The independent interpreter’s organization for judiciary interpreters:
All: Associations for interpreters and translators
Excellent, if pricey, resources for community interpreters, books, videos and classes:

Dictionary and language forums:

Linguee allows you to see how other professional translators have rendered words from one language to another in print across government documents, the net and other publications (it ranges from super useful and elucidating to pathetic):

Word reference is both dictionary and forum; in different languages, with input from experts and…sometimes the clueless, but I can often find the answer to a question here.

For active listening skills:

Memory and recall:


And, an excellent way to practice your interpreting for both consecutive and simultaneous: audiobooks, available for free at your local library in various formats, at for a fee and other venues.  Just think: you can rewind as many times as you wish, change the speed of narration and listen to something you find worthwhile, entertaining or educational while you train yourself to improve your skills. Add in a recording of your performance and you have a toolkit in a teeny-tiny box to become a better interpreter.