School of Social, Historical and Political Studies

British Sign Language (Interpreting)

BA (Hons) Full-time 3 years, Part-time 6 years

Why choose this course?

The BA (Hons) British Sign Language (Interpreting) is a long established and highly respected course with a team of Deaf and hearing staff from diverse backgrounds. 

It is one of the few courses of its kind in British Sign Language (Interpreting) in the UK. The award offers the potential to lead to Trainee interpreter or Registered Sign Language Interpreter status recognised by the professional registration body - the NRCPD. 

The lecturing team have a variety of national and international expertise in teaching and professional qualifications and have experience working for a diverse range of public, private and voluntary sector organisations. The team believes in interactive learning and encourages full participation from all our students: external examiners have consistently highlighted our innovative learning, teaching and assessments regimes as a major strength. 

During your studies you will have access to a range of learning environments and technology to support your learning.  These include, film studio, social work flat, mock hospital ward, collaborative classroom spaces and other areas to enhance your learning.  

Your studies will culminate in an opportunity to prepare you for working as an interpreter. This is done through practical application of learning through a well-established work placement component in the final year. To date, upon graduation, students have found a high level of employability success. 

What happens on the course?

Our BA British Sign language (Interpreting) course provides a unique course which engages with the local community to provide students with current research and good links with the deaf community. Our ongoing research within the team feeds directly into and informs our teaching on the programme.   

Subject Areas: 

Modules across the programme are designed to introduce you to the topics of linguistics, language, culture, deaf history, deafblindness, interpreting, translation and the wider deaf community and its heritage.  Modules are designed to help you develop a range of study related skills, such as research, communication, essay writing and presentations. 

Work Placement Experience:  

The course has links with a range of organisations, educational establishments, and freelance interpreters across the country who offer opportunities to our BA (Hons) Interpreting Students each year. 


A range of environments are used for our teaching. These include traditional style classrooms as well as other environments for simulated learning experiences.  You will also have access to information for your subjects via our virtual learning environment – Canvas


You will be assessed in many different ways, through academic assignments such as essays and case studies, presentations, observations, reflective/critical writing and presenting a portfolio of work as part of your work placement experience. 

Links and collaborations: 

We work closely with other subject areas, e.g. nursing and social work to create authentic interpreting scenarios. We have many links with local organisations and strongly encourage students to take up volunteering opportunities with organisations such as Zebra Access, Sandwell Deaf Association, BID, Deafblind UK, NDCS to name but a few.  

Course Modules

Additional Information

Everything you need to know about this course!

The BA (Hons) British Sign Language (Interpreting) is one of the few in the country. 

The course is taught by a well-established and long-standing team of deaf and hearing staff from diverse backgrounds, with many years of experience and well known within their field. 

The course makes use of innovative teaching and learning practices in simulated learning environments.  

Throughout the years, staff have been nominated for various awards in recognition of support for students and innovation in teaching. 

External examiners through the years have commented on the high standard of teaching and varied assessment.  

On successful completion of this course, you will be able to: 

Demonstrate advanced bilingual, bi-cultural skills and intercultural competence. 

Use a range of established techniques to initiate and undertake analysis of information, including your professional performance and be able to propose solutions to problems arising from that analysis. 

Demonstrate the ability to apply the theories of linguistics, translation and interpreting to professional practice. 

Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the well-established principles of your area(s) of study, and of the way in which those principles have developed with an understanding of the limits of your knowledge and skills, and how this influences analyses and interpretations based on that knowledge. 

Demonstrate the ability to apply underlying concepts and principles outside the context in which they were first studied, including, where appropriate, the application of those principles in an employment context. 

Location Mode Fee Year
Home Full-time £9250 per year 2021-22
Home Full-time £9250 per year 2022-23
Home Part-time £3100 per year# 2021-22
Home Part-time £3120 per year# 2022-23
International Full-time £12950 per year 2021-22
International Full-time £13450 per year 2022-23

The University is committed to a transparent fee structure, with no hidden costs, to help you make an informed decision. This includes information on what is included in the fee and how fees are calculated and reviewed

# Undergraduate part-time fees for 50% rate of study

Typical entry requirement: 96 UCAS points

  • A Levels - grades CCC / BCD
  • BTEC L3 Extended Diploma or OCR Cambridge L3 Technical Extended Diploma - grades MMM
  • BTEC L3 Diploma - grades DD
  • Pass Access to HE Diploma: 45 L3 credits at Merit

Use the UCAS Tariff calculator to check your qualifications and points

  • If you've got other qualifications or relevant experience, please contact The Gateway for further advice before applying.
  • International entry requirements and application guidance can be found here

 Other Requirements

Students must have studied a minimum of two years post GCSE level. However, it is expected that some applicants will be mature students with work experience, who wish to further their career development. These applicants will be processed through standard procedures, which may involve an interview as part of the process. Please see for further information.

An Enhanced DBS Police Check is required prior to attending the final year work placement modules. Your tutors will notify you when to start this process.

Contextual Offers

The university recognises that many students have additional barriers in progression to university, whether this be through disability, as a care leaver, from an area of deprivation or another factor. The university wishes to provide additional support for these students through the contextual offer scheme. If you are eligible, the University will apply a contextual Admissions decision, in the form of a reduced offer letter by up to two grades or 16 UCAS tariff points. Find out more.

'I completed my studies in April 2022, since then I have worked several freelance bookings and in June 2022 I began working as an interpreter at an agency in London.  My time at university prepared me for my current role as I have gained an awareness of the Deaf community, their culture, and their language. From the ‘Consecutive’ and ‘Simultaneous’ interpreting modules, I developed the critical thinking skills to decipher a speech in order to translate meaning accurately. Before starting my course, I had minimal to no BSL ability, I only knew the alphabet, but through the completion of my studies I have achieved Level 6 proficiency.'

'In my final year, I was placed with two freelance interpreters in London, this experience allowed me to apply my theoretical knowledge, that I had learnt at University, to practical situations. I was able to analyse and justify the strategies used by my supervisors in order to convey the meaning of an utterance in the most effective way.  I received support from Sabrina Altariva from the Careers team. With her support, I was able to achieve the Gold Employability Award. '

Hanha Ahmed - Interpreting graduate 2022


If you don’t want to take out a loan to pay your fees or if you aren’t eligible to receive a loan, you might want to take advantage of the University’s scheme to pay by instalments: see How to pay.


Your employer, embassy or organisation can pay for your Tuition fees:

If your employer, embassy or organisation agrees to pay all or part of your tuition fees; the University will refer to them as your sponsor and will invoice them for the appropriate amount.

We must receive notification of sponsorship in writing as soon as possible, and before enrolment, confirming that the sponsor will pay your tuition fees.

Financial Hardship:

Students can apply to the Dennis Turner Opportunity Fund for help with course related costs however this cannot be used for fees or to cover general living costs.

Bursaries and Scholarships:

In addition the University also offers a range of Bursaries and Scholarships packages

You can find more information on the University’s Funding, cost, fee and support pages.


01902 32 22 22



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