Although a relatively small field, there are about 200 licensed or permitted sign language interpreters in Alabama. There are some differences between getting a license and permit, as they have separate qualifications. It is a little more difficult to get a license, but it is best to go that route if you can qualify. It just may take a bit longer. There is also the option of getting a permit first and then working to get a license.
To get a license as an Alabama sign language interpreter or transliterator, you are going to first need national certification from one of two organizations. They are the National Association For The Deaf, which is NAD, and the Registry of Interpreters For The Deaf, which is RID. The next step in getting an Alabama license is to pass a Code of Ethics exam.
Note: Contact the Board about how to apply for and take a Code of Ethics exam. There is little to no specific information on this online.
If you don’t yet qualify for a license but want to get a permit, you still need to pass a performance assessment to prove that you are competent as a sign language interpreter. There are a number of assessments in the field that you can take, and you need only one of them. The Department of Labor lists the following assessment options: RID, NAD, Georgia Quality Assessment, Florida Quality Assessment, Educational Interpreter Evaluation, English Signing System Evaluation, and Education Interpreter Performance Assessment. But to get a permit, you must also pass the same Code of Ethics exam as that given to license applicants.
If applying for a license or permit, you need to send an application to the Alabama Licensure Board For Interpreters And Transliterators. Here is their contact information:
PO Box 240178
Montgomery, AL 36124
Also, here is the page with all the application forms. You might also be able to apply online using the links on the second page listed below:
The source for much of the information in this article is from the Alabama Department of Labor.