Sign Language Interpreter Salary (United States)

Sign Language Interpreters in the United States can expect to earn an average of $25.21 per hour. The top of the range reaches $41.59, and the bottom approaches $14.32 per hour. Geographic location and career length each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Health benefits are not enjoyed by everyone in this line of work, and 42 percent lack any coverage at all. Medical benefits are reported by more than half and dental coverage is claimed by 42 percent. Most Sign Language Interpreters report high levels of job satisfaction. This outline is based on answers to PayScale's salary survey.
Sign Language Interpreter Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$22,177 - $59,444
(Median)
22K
35K
43K
59K
MEDIAN: $34,658
10%
50%
75%
90%
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Sign Language Interpreter Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$14.32 - $41.59
(Median)
14
19
25
35
42
MEDIAN: $25.00
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
Add this chart to your site: 640px    300px

National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$28K$56K$84K
Salary
$22,177 - $59,444  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,013  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,032 - $82,871  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 185
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$19$38$57
Hourly Rate
$14.32 - $41.59  
   
Overtime
$18.47 - $56.17  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,013  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,032 - $82,871  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 312
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Job Description for Sign Language Interpreter

The sign language interpreter provides translation into American Sign Language (ASL) for Deaf and Hard of Hearing (HoH) individuals, as well as provides translation from these individuals into spoken English (or another language, depending on their specialty and audience). These interpreter can work in a variety of settings such as schools, offices, and conferences, among many others. Positions may be part time and full time, and the interpreter may work as an independent contractor. When employed in schools, the interpreter may translate teachers' speech into sign language for Deaf and HoH students and others (such as Deaf and HoH staff members) as needed. Other uses for interpreters include seminars, presentations, and emergency room interpretations for patients.
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Sign Language Interpreter Tasks
  • Serve as liaison with non-hearing and hearing people in various business or social situations.
  • Provide information and orientation to non-hearing people in emergency situations.
  • Translate communications between hearing and non-hearing people using American Sign Language (ASL) and/or Signing Exact English (SEE).

Sign Language Interpreter Job Listings

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Just a handful of professional skills are reported by Sign Language Interpreters who took the survey. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Sign Language. American Sign Language and English Language are also commonly seen together.

Pay by Experience Level for Sign Language Interpreter

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Workers new to the field can expect to earn $40K, increasing to $50K after five to 10 years. Earnings total $49K after one to two decades. After two decades in the field, Sign Language Interpreters continue to experience steady salary growth, and typical compensation averages $51K. Experienced employees who have 10-20 years of experience make up about a third of the workforce; inexperienced individuals who have been working for less than one year comprise less than five percent, and senior people with more than 20 years under their belt fill out the remaining 15 percent. Workers in this area tend to have one to nine years of experience.

Pay Difference By Location

Washington
up arrow 47%
St. Louis
up arrow 23%
National Average
$44,000
Columbus
up arrow 6%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
Washington is home to an above-average pay rate for Sign Language Interpreters, 47 percent higher than the national average. Sign Language Interpreters will also find cushy salaries in St. Louis (+23 percent). With compensation 6 percent below the national average, Columbus is not known for hefty paychecks and actually represents the lowest-paying market.

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Experience Affects Sign Language Interpreter Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 16%
Mid-Career
up arrow 14%
Experienced
up arrow 10%
National Average
$44,000
Entry-Level
up arrow 9%

Skills That Affect Sign Language Interpreter Salaries

American Sign Language
up arrow 3%
National Average
$44,000
Spanish Language
up arrow 2%
English Language
up arrow 3%
Sign Language
up arrow 16%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 99 votes.

Gender

Female
85%
female alumni
 
Male
15%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
32%
5-9 years
20%
10-19 years
29%
20 years or more
15%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 56% dental benefits Dental: 42%
vision benefits Vision: 31% employee benefits None: 42%