What is interpretation?

When most people hear the word interpreter, they think of someone who translates the meaning of one language into another. In a park setting, museum, or zoo, interpreters “translate” the meanings of artifacts, collections, events, and physical resources into a language that helps visitors understand these resources.

According to the National Association for Interpretation (NAI), interpretation is “a mission-based communication process that forges emotional and intellectual connections between the interests of the audience and the meanings inherent in the resource.”

To learn more about interpretation, take this short micro-learning course called Interpretation Through Time.

How to Grow Your Skills

Eppley offers two ways to grow and expand your interpretive skills: online courses and online certificate programs. NAI offers a third, more rigorous option in the form of certifications.

Note: Interpreters with the National Park Service should visit the Common Learning Portal to learn more about NPS-specific training opportunities. Users will need to be on the NPS network to access the site.

Interpretation Training Opportunities

Understanding all of it

Online Courses Certificate Programs Certification
Format Online Online Classroom & Individual
Level Beginner to Intermediate Beginner to Intermediate Beginner to Advanced
Cost $9 - $59 $250 - $350 Varies
Assessment Only test Online tests and graded assignments Tests and demonstrated performance
Time Commitment 1 - 3 Hours 25 - 30 hours Varies
Sponsor Eppley Eppley and NAI NAI

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