Become an interpreter for the Deaf. Eastern Kentucky University is home to an accredited, top-notch ASL-to-English interpreter training program with an outstanding employment rate for graduates. Start your interpreting career with EKU.

Degree Concentrations

Bachelor’s Minor
ASL and English Interpretation ASL Studies

Admissions Requirements

Program applications are accepted on a two-year cycle. Application to EKU does not guarantee acceptance to the Interpreter Training Program (ITP). Enrollment is limited, and admissions criteria includes:

  • Overall GPA of 2.5 or higher by the end of the semester preceding application, and
  • ASL 106 with a grade of “Satisfactory”
  • ASL 201 and 202 with a grade of “B” or higher
  • ITP 215W and 220 with a grade of “C” or higher
  • Degrees of Reading Power Language Test
  • An admission interview by the ITP Interview Committee

Note: The ITP accepts students for the fall semester of all even years (i.e., 2022, 2024, etc.). The deadline for application is March 15th every even year. For first-year students entering EKU during the fall semester of odd-numbered years, it may take 5 years to complete the program due to course prerequisites and limited course offerings, unless a student is able to transfer courses, pass credit by examinations, and/or enroll in summer classes prior to the first fall semester of the odd-numbered year.


Where are Recent Graduates Employed?

  • Universities
  • K-12 education
  • Video relay service
  • Medical interpreting
  • Legal interpreting
  • Interpreting agencies

Career Outlook

  • With societal changes and innovations in technology, and Deaf professionals having greater access in services, there is an increased demand for sign language interpreters.
  • The demand for sign language interpreters has risen significantly in the past decade and is expected to continue to rise; however, interpreters will always have the greatest opportunity for work where there are larger Deaf communities.
  • The average beginning salary for interpreters is comparable to a beginning teacher’s salary, dependent on the state in which they reside. In Kentucky, Vocational Rehabilitation sets a freelance rate for interpreters, which most interpreters follow if they are private practitioners. Rates are also commensurate with education, amount of experience, credentials and the type of work the interpreter is providing.

Scholarship Opportunities

Scholarships are offered and can be applied for at Scholarships at EKU. In addition, some small scholarships are offered to students upon being accepted into the EKU Interpreter Training Program.


The Department of American Sign Language and Interpreter Education (ASLIE)