“The complexity of the work we do as interpreters can leave us with many questions, insecurities, and uncomfortable feelings so the opportunity to explore this in detail with a trusted supervisor has enabled me to become more aware, considered, and resilient as I work.”

The Benefits of Supervision

Some benefits from professional Supervision:

  • Designated time to reflect on your practice
  • Help you provide a better service to clients
  • Recognise your personal and professional strengths
  • Identify areas for development
  • Explore your personal responses to work
  • Increase your confidence in your skills and competence
  • Validate your practice
  • Gain feedback and guidance
  • Discuss work-related issues in confidence
  • Consider the impact the work has on you and develop resilience

For a list of Interpreters who have qualified as Professional Supervisors please visit:


Links to Supervisors in the fields of Counselling and Psychotherapy:

Counselling Directory



The majority of sign language interpreters work as freelance practitioners and often work in isolation with limited opportunities to talk about their work, as such interpreters often rely on close friends and colleagues for support. The people they turn to may not understand the work, or may find it difficult to challenge them as they do not want to risk upsetting or hurting someone they are close to.

Supervision is an opportunity to explore work related issues, dilemmas and decisions made in the course of the working day with the guidance and support of a Supervisor.  Rather than something to be feared supervision is an opportunity for growth and development enabling the supervisee to become a more robust, resilient and ethical practitioner. Trust is central to the supervisory relationship to enable the supervisee to bring what they may perceive as ‘mistakes’ without fear of judgement.

Through the process of supervision supervisees can take a step back and consider not only practice issues, but also their responses to the work. Interpreting assignments can be emotionally demanding and witnessing the distress of others can be distressing for interpreters. Understanding personal responses to people and situations can increase resilience and reduce work related stress.

Supervision also provides interpreters with an opportunity to recognise their personal and professional limits and gain a better understanding of how they work. This enables them to make informed choices about the work they undertake, protecting both themselves and those they work with.


 We recommend that Sign Language Interpreters seek a Professional Supervisor who has attended either a Diploma in Supervision or a PG Certificate in Supervision. Both courses should provide in-depth training of 120-150 face to face teaching and practice hours to fully equip successful students to carry out their roles and responsibilities.

Professional Supervisors will also possess appropriate up to date insurance, maintain professional membership and commit to their own ongoing supervision arrangements.

The supervisor should be happy to answer any questions you may have and listen to what you are looking for as a Sign Language Interpreter.

If during your initial contact you believe the supervisor meets your needs, arrange to meet them in person. Many supervisors offer a no fee/reduced fee initial consultation where you would negotiate a contract.

Expect to pay between £40 and £60 an hour for individual supervision, and to meet for between 1- 2 hours monthly, depending on your needs.

Group supervision is usually for 2 hours a month, with a maximum of four members in the group. The cost is usually shared equally amongst group members.

Being a Supervisor is a rewarding role and can provide a secondary income stream. If you are considering becoming a Supervisor please take a look at our Diploma in Supervision page for more details and, of course, get in touch with any questions you may have, we’ll be very happy to talk over anything you need.