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HEAD OFFICE Sign Solutions, Rectory Court, Old Rectory Lane , Alvechurch, Birmingham B48 7SX

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Sign Language

Our extensive database of fully-qualified, NRCPD registered interpreters ensures a professional, ethical service that meets the standards you expect to receive, 24/7.

Training and Learning

We are an award-winning Signature accredited NVQ Level 6 Assessment Centre dedicated to the provision of high quality training, assessment, monitoring and continuing professional development.

Innovation

We offer a range of exciting new initiatives including the first ever Deaf Awareness e-learning package available completely online; a BSL Sign & Spell Smartphone app providing a step-by-step guide to the finger-spelling alphabet; the panoramic benefits of video & telephone interpreting.

Welcome to Sign Solutions,
Language & Learning

Launched as the first independent British Sign Language (BSL) Interpreting agency in 1998, Sign Solutions has established itself as Britain's leading provider of communication services for Deaf and Hard of Hearing people.

Our website is designed to give you quick and easy access to our services. You can contact us at any time using our quick contact link, by using our online Live Chat system or calling 0843 1780 773.

Sign Languageincluding Video Interpreting

Our specialist areas include:

  • British Sign Language (BSL) / English Interpreters (NRCPD Registered)
  • Lipspeakers (NRCPD and / or Association of Lipspeakers Registered)
  • Deafblind interpreters: Visual Frame, HandsOn or Manual (NRCPD Registered)
  • Speech-to-text operators (Palantype and SpeedText) (NRCPD, BIVR or AVSTTR Registered)
  • Notetakers (electronic and manual)

Training & Learningincluding app & e-learning

Our specialist areas include:

  • Deaf Awareness Training
  • Sign Language Training
  • Interpreter Training
  • Continuing Professional Development & other courses
  • Independent assessments and coaching for freelance interpreters




Latest News

Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy

We’re very excited to be welcoming @EdVaizey MP to our head office today! Stay tuned for updates and pictures!

READ MORE

Murder Trial Verdict

Thanks to our interpreting team of BSL and Deaf Relay interpreters , we know it was a long and difficult case.  http://www.leicestermercury.

READ MORE

"I think the service is excellent"

Urmila Sudra
HM Magistrates' Court Service

"...excellent service from Sign Solutions!"

Joanna Rowland-Stuart
Deaf Professional

"The staff are very helpful..."

E.J. Cohen
ASL/English Interpreter

"...a real supportive team."

Chris Thornton
Wakefield College

"Sign Solutions are better than other agencies..."

Debbie Simmons
Metropolitan Police

"..swift turn-around and competitive rates."

Mel Hadge
CEO, Techno-Com Ltd

"Your employees are very responsive and deal with requests very efficiently"

Brenda Johnson
Birmingham & Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust

"Very prompt attendance. Very detailed interpreting"

Maria Davis
Croydon Primary Care Trust

"You are better than the other agencies and respond quickly"

Jill Wadsworth
St.Andrews Medical Centre

"Quality is the most important factor to me; I will use your services again"

Sarah Johnston
Salford Community Health

"Good communications and the interpreter was excellent, very professional"

Annette Holden
Queens Hospital Foundation Trust

""the service provided by the Sign Solutions Interpreter was excellent""

John Hurst
Capita

"Thank you for an enjoyable course, the tutor was fab!"

Kirsty Maynard
Level 6 NVQ certificate in BSL

"Excellent! Really worthwhile training!"

Sam Williams
Language Processing Course

"Sign Solutions have been very professional and supportive throughout my course. "

Kate Boddy
Level 6 Interpreting Part 1

"Found the course extremely informative and a fascinating insight."

J Baxter
Deaf Awareness training

"I was 100% positively surprised. Great training, good Interpreters and excellent presenter."

P Sveusson
Deaf Awareness training

"I would definitely recommend this BSL course to my friends and family, the tutor was excellent!"

Jackie Sherwood
Introduction to BSL level 1

"I work with a great team of people who are committed to providing an excellent high calibre service to all their individual clients."

Lucy David
Sign Solutions - In house CSW and Project Manager

"Yes, we were very pleased, and impressed, with your response times and willingness to assist at very short notice"

Neil Ross
Glaisyers Solicitors

"I was very impressed with the support and professional assistance provided by Sign Solutions."

Alison Symes
Cafcass

"When making the bookings the staff at Sign Solutions were incredibly helpful (especially as both occasions were at very short notice)"

Rachel Norton
Longhurst Group

"We were very pleased, and impressed, with your response times and willingness to assist at very short notice. We have added you to our experts' register and will, without hesitation, use you again should the need arise or recommend your firm to other solicitors. "

Neil Ross
Glaisyers

" I was very impressed with the support and professional assistance provided by Sign Solutions. Without it I would have been unable to complete the court report and hence finalise matters in the required timescale. "

Alison Symes
CAFCASS

"When making the bookings the staff at Sign Solutions were incredibly helpful (especially as both occasions were at very short notice). "

Rachel Norton
Longhurst Group

"everyone was so enthused and has left them all wanting more "

Karen Woodcock
Assistant Director

"everyone was so enthused about learning and left them all wanting more! "

Karen Woodcock
Assistant Director, Mercian Housing, Aston, Birmingham

"thoroughly enjoyed the course and wished that I had done all my training with Sign Solutions, thank you"

Jack Flavell
Interpreting Part 1 - Candidate

"If everyone else was as easy to work with as you all are at Sign Solutions, our jobs would be all be a lot easier :-)"

Daniel Gillard
NHS Salford CCG

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Interpreting & other communication services

We are able to provide a full range of communication professionals available for Deaf, Deafblind and hard of hearing users in any domain, be it legal, business, medical, educational, conference, community, theatre, etc: 

Is it ‘interpreter’ or ‘signer’?

Many people refer to sign language interpreters as ‘signers’, however this is an incorrect term. They describe a BSL (British Sign Language) interpreter as a ‘signer’ because they use sign language, i.e. they sign in order to communicate. The common language for Deaf people in the UK is BSL (British Sign Language); therefore these Deaf people require interpreters for many aspects of life.

There is no one way to interpret – interpretation is subjective to the interpreter (or ‘signer’ as some hearing people incorrectly term them), therefore every interpretation will be different.

The company was launched as the first independent sign language interpreting agency, and here at Sign Solutions, we are sign language specialists, i.e. we specialise in the field of BSL (British Sign Language) and interpreting. Our reputation is well established within the industry of interpreting; 75% of all NRCPD interpreters are registered with us and take freelance work through us. We are now one of Britain’s leading providers of interpretation and translation services.

We are available 24/7, and offer competitive rates with no administration charges.

BSL (British Sign Language) Translations

Translation is a carefully prepared and considered piece of work involving the translation of written text from one language to another. It is performed by a translator, and it is different to an interpretation; it is more exact.

A ‘for information’ translation, also  known as a ‘sight translation’, is an accurate but unpolished piece of work that is produced in-house using a camcorder (English to BSL) or using standard printing and letter/document formats, or alternatively, audio tape (BSL to English).  They are produced faster and much more cheaply than a publication translation.  Sight translation is suitable for letters or information that is intended for individual/personal use only.  Examples range from an explanation of a leaflet to court/tribunal judgements.

Sight translations

Sight translation is suitable for letters, video-letters or information that is intended for individual/personal use only. Examples range from an explanation of a leaflet to court/tribunal judgements.

Public Translations

A ‘publication translation’ requires a much higher standard of preparation, accuracy, fidelity, clarity and quality and will be filmed in a professional recording studio. The final product will reflect the style/image of the source material and of your company/product.

Publication translations are required for any documents where it is important to portray a professional image.

Because they are filmed in professional recording studios, the cost will be greater than that of a sight translation.

It is almost always preferable to use a Deaf presenter for ‘publication translations’.  This is because the Deaf person will have first language fluency and this creates an instant rapport with your Deaf audience. The majority of BSL (British Sign Language) interpreters (or ‘signers’ as some hearing people incorrectly term them) only have second language fluency and their translations can be immediately recognised as a non-native production. This is because the BSL (British Sign Language) may not flow as smoothly as it should, i.e. word order or choice of vocabulary may be unduly influenced by the English source text. It is equivalent to listening to a heavily accented and perhaps ungrammatical foreign person presenting in English. This lowers the quality of your product and can often alienate your client.  Using a Deaf person will not usually incur any extra expense.

With Sign Solutions you can be sure that the final product will be an accurate and high quality translation.

BSL (British Sign Language) & Interpreter Training

We are an award-winning and accredited NVQ6 Training & Assessment Centre dedicated to the provision of high-quality training, assessment, monitoring and continuing professional development (CPD) for BSL/English Interpreters and other professionals who use BSL (British Sign Language) on a regular basis. We also provide Deaf Awareness Training and Levels 1-6 BSL (British Sign Language) courses for individuals and organisations.

We can deliver training courses anywhere in the UK, and can tailor the training to suit your needs; therefore the training will be bespoke. This can be done for any course: BSL (British Sign Language), Interpreting or Deaf Awarene.

Our course portfolio includes:

Level 6 NVQ Diploma, Sign Language Interpreting
Level 6 NVQ Certificate in BSL (British Sign Language)
BSL/Interpreting Level 6 Development Training
NVQ3 in BSL (British Sign Language)
BSL (British Sign Language) Level 1
BSL (British Sign Language) Level 2
Deaf Awareness face-to-face training & via e-learning
Introduction to BSL (British Sign Language) Linguistics
Induction into Police & Magistrates’ Court Interpreting
Professional Deaf Relay training
Introduction to Interpreting in Mental Health Settings
Advanced English for Interpreters
Language Processing & Coping Strategies
Intensive Voice-Over Training (BSL-to-English)
Intensive English-to-BSL Training
Totally CPD (a chance to earn all your CPD points in one course)

Sign Solutions provide the largest range of CPD (Continuing Professional Development) training courses of any UK sign language agency; therefore if you are a BSL (British Sign Language) interpreter, who is looking to develop your interpretation skills and knowledge of interpreting and BSL (British Sign Language), why not sign up to one of our CPD (Continuing Professional Development) training courses?

Innovations

We offer various innovations available to both Deaf and hearing people – whether an interpreter or not – to assist in communication between the two communities. In addition to in-house training, we provide Deaf Awareness via e-learning; this method of training is available online and so provides an alternative to Deaf Awareness training face-to-face. The user(s) will receive a certificate of Deaf Awareness upon completion of the course.

In addition, we offer a finger-spelling app which provides the first steps for a hearing person to communicate with a Deaf person. It teaches the user how to spell their name in BSL (British sign language), and the finger-spelling is demonstrated by a Deaf presenter.

Our Head Interpreter has also developed a range of Training DVDs which aim to help interpreters improve their BSL (British Sign Language) interpreting skills. Each training DVD contains two discs: one for interpreting English-to-BSL and the other for interpreting BSL-to-English. Each individual DVD is worth 4-5 unstructured CPD points when completed.

He has developed a supplementary DVD which is designed specifically to assist interpreters working in police settings. Police cautions can often cause difficulties, and this DVD is designed to assist interpreters in interpreting this challenging procedure. The DVD is intended to be used as a guideline for interpreters; it features three Deaf people providing alternative ways of interpreting the caution.

Expert Witness

Here at Sign Solutions we offer a diverse team of expert witnesses. An Expert Interpreter/Witness is someone who has specialised knowledge in BSL (British Sign Language), beyond that of a regular BSL interpreter, and can advise and/or work with counsel on specific language and cultural issues relevant to Deaf people, British Sign Language and Interpretation. They can provide accurate transcripts of police interviews with Deaf people, and verify the accuracy of in-court interpretations. Expert witnesses are indispensable in high-profile legal assignments.

It is inevitable that interpreters will make mistakes, and without establishing that the Deaf person understands what is being asked of them during the interview/court hearing and verifying the accuracy of every minute aspect of interpretation, the outcome of the court case could very well be compromised. Sign Solutions currently offers six Expert Witnesses.