Can I take the CCHI certification exams outside the United States?

As the CoreCHI exam can be taken online, eligible interpreters may obtain CoreCHI certification from outside the United States.

However, the oral exams (CHI-Spanish, Arabic, and Mandarin, as well as ETOE) are administered exclusively at Prometric testing centers within the United States. Therefore, if you wish to obtain CHI or CoreCHI-P certification, you must be able to take your oral exam in the United States.

Is the ETOE™ exam replacing the CHI™ oral certification exams or future language-specific exams?

No! CCHI recognizes that the most effective and direct way to evaluate interpreting skills is through a bilingual oral performance exam like the CHI exams, which test all interpreting modes. However, creating and maintaining such exams is very resource-intensive, as it requires a certain number of pilot test takers, subject matter experts, and qualified raters of a specific language to be continuously available. For many languages, this is currently unfeasible. That’s why CCHI explored how the same skills could be evaluated in a different way by conducting the EtoE Interpreter Testing Study in 2020, where interpreters took a monolingual ETOE exam and a bilingual CHI exam, and their results were compared. The study provided us with a scientific foundation for a new approach to evaluating interpreting skills. If you are interested in the details, please read the summary report here (it contains the link to the full report, too).

Therefore, the new monolingual ETOE exam is not intended as a replacement for bilingual exams. It is an opportunity to test the skills of interpreters of any language in a more efficient way, and it closes the gap for languages where performance certification has not been available until this moment. While we are excited to launch this universal skills-based exam, we will also continue to develop bilingual exams in the order that makes the most sense from a feasibility/sustainability standpoint. In fact, the ETOE exam may help point us in the right direction, as it will give us a clearer idea of which languages are most represented among U.S. interpreters who want a higher-tier certification.

I’m CoreCHI™ certified, or work in a language other than Spanish/Arabic/Mandarin. Is the CoreCHI-Performance™ Certification mandatory for me?

All CoreCHI certificants qualify to take the ETOE exam and earn the CoreCHI-P certification. At this time, transitioning to the CoreCHI-P certification is voluntary. Starting in 2025, this transition will become mandatory, and the CoreCHI certificants will have to earn the CoreCHI-P certification within 1-2 years.


What is tested on the ETOE™ performance exam? What are the exam specifications?

CCHI’s ETOE performance exam (oral exam) tests certain cognitive skills required for healthcare interpreting in a monolingual (English-to-English) format. It consists of 22 scored items in the following sections:

1. Listening Comprehension – one (1) audio item
2. Shadowing – one (1) audio item
3. Memory Capacity – eight (8) audio items
4. Restate the Meaning – seven (7) audio items
5. Equivalence of Meaning – four (4) text items
6. Reading Comprehension – one (1) text, between 170-220 words long, with three (3) questions based on it
7. Speaking Skills in the Language Other Than English – one (1) unscored item; candidates need to describe the image in their LOTE. (ASL interpreters will be describing the image in English.)

For more information, you can review the ETOE Exam Specifications or watch this webinar explaining the ETOE exam content. A free practice test is available here.

What is CCHI’s Refund Policy?

All CCHI certificants, applicants, and candidates must comply with this Refund Policy. Submitting an application online constitutes understanding of and agreement to follow this Policy.

1.       Examination Fees

You may receive an exam fee refund ONLY IF your eligibility to take the corresponding exam has not expired, AND:

  • you have not scheduled your exam appointment yet, OR
  • if you have cancelled your exam appointment with Prometric, CCHI’s testing vendor. (Please be aware a $25 cancellation/rescheduling fee paid to Prometric will not be refunded.)

After you have taken the examination, OR if you missed your exam appointment, NO refunds will be granted.

Requests for a refund must be received prior to the end of your exam eligibility period:

  • For the CoreCHI™ exam – 6 (six) months from the date of the application approval;
  • For a CHI™ exam – 12 (twelve) months from the date of passing the CoreCHI exam.

CCHI does not grant refunds after that date (i.e., after the end of your eligibility).

CCHI charges a processing fee of $12 on all refunds. This amount is subject to change without notice.

To request a refund, you must contact CCHI via email at

To apply for a future exam after cancelling and receiving a refund, you must pay full costs.

2.       Application Fees

Application fees are non-refundable.

CCHI does NOT refund the following processing fees for:

  • Initial application
  • Renewal application

Reversing transaction charges in connection with payment of these fees without requesting a refund constitutes non-compliance with this policy and may incur disciplinary actions.

What ADA accommodations does CCHI provide for its exams?

Whenever possible, CCHI is committed to providing reasonable accommodation in its examination processes to individuals with disabilities, in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Appropriate accommodations will be provided to qualified individuals with disabilities to the extent that such accommodation does not fundamentally alter the examination, or cause an undue burden to CCHI or the agency administering the examination.

It is the responsibility of individuals with disabilities to notify CCHI in writing of the applicant’s need for an accommodation and submit the pertinent supporting documentation in electronic format at the time of submitting a request for scheduling an exam via our online application system no later than 45 days before the examination date.

There are two ways to notify CCHI of the ADA accommodation request:

  • If a special need or disability is present at the time of submitting the application or paying for a CCHI examination and before receiving a Notice to Schedule, the applicant should choose the “Request ADA Accommodation” option before they select the orange “Pay fees” button in the online application system. At this time the applicant will be directed to explain the nature of their request and to upload necessary documentation in an electronic format.
  • If a special need or disability occurs after the applicant has already received their Notice to Schedule, they must complete and submit via email to the CCHI’s ADA Accommodation Request Form (click here to download this form or see it in Appendix E of the Candidate’s Examination Handbook), along with the supporting documentation.

Regardless of how the ADA accommodation request is submitted – via the online application system or via email – an applicant/candidate must state the type of accommodation(s) needed, in addition to providing current and appropriate documentation of the disability. The applicant’s/candidate’s request will not be considered complete and reviewed without the CCHI’s ADA Accommodation Request Form.

The documentation provided in CCHI’s ADA Accommodation Request Form must not be more than three years old from the date of the application. It should include an official statement from a healthcare provider who has first-hand knowledge of the disability, describing the nature of the disability and specific recommendations regarding the type of accommodation required to address the disability. The letter should be on the letterhead stationery of the healthcare provider in question, and include his or her title, address, phone number, and original signature.

The applicant/candidate grants CCHI permission to contact the professionals who submitted documentation in support of a request for accommodation in order to obtain further clarification concerning a request.

Examples of requests for special testing accommodations that may be granted include: modification of seating or other physical arrangements in the examination facility; providing for the examination to be taken in an accessible location; providing a human reader for individuals who are blind or with low vision (available only for test-center delivery); allowing medicine of food; or providing for a reasonable extension of testing time.

Examples of requests for special testing accommodations that may be denied include: modification of the content of an objective multiple-choice examination; providing for unlimited testing time; allowing the candidate to leave the examination room for a break; permitting a reader to paraphrase test material or translate the material into another language.

The following testing accommodations, if granted by CCHI, are available only at test centers (i.e., they are not available for online-proctored delivery of the CoreCHI™ exam): human reader, notetaker, actuator, bathroom break.

All accommodation determinations will be made by CCHI at its discretion. Failure to notify CCHI of needed accommodation(s) in one’s application and/or no later than 45 days before scheduling an exam may result in the accommodations not being available at the time of the examination.

Applicants/candidates shall not hold CCHI accountable for any lack of appropriate accommodation deriving from the applicant’s/candidate’s own failure to notify CCHI of their needs on a timely basis. Once special accommodations have been granted, they may not be altered during the examination.

For more information visit our Policies page and click on the blue bar “ADA Accommodation Procedures.”

How is the CHI™ exam score calculated? What do the percentages on my score report mean?

Your CHI exam score report states two separate things: the overall scaled score, and how well you did in specific parts of the test. There is no relationship between the percentages reported for the parts of the test (subdomains) and the overall scaled score. We report the percentage correct for 3 subdomains: consecutive interpreting, simultaneous interpreting, and sight translation/translation. The percentage correct for any part of the test (subdomain, e.g. consecutive interpreting) is computed as the portion of the points that you earned relative to the number of points it is possible to earn in that part.  For example, if the maximum number of points that it is possible to earn in a part of the test is 72 and you earned 51 points, the percentage on your score report would be 71%.

Your total score is not the average of your performance in all subdomains. Please recognize that since the examination is scored on a totality, the percentages reported for subdomains are intended only as a guide. In order to improve your score if you failed an exam, you need to practice and improve all modes of interpreting.

What is tested on the CHI™ (Arabic, Mandarin, Spanish) performance exam? What are the exam specifications?

CCHI’s CHI performance exam (oral exam) tests the candidate’s healthcare interpreting skills and abilities in a language-specific way. It contains 8 items distributed across the following domains:

Interpret Consecutively (75%)
Interpret Simultaneously (14%)
Sight Translate (9%)
Translate Healthcare Documents (2%)

For more info, review the CHI Exam Specifications.

What is tested on the CoreCHI™ written exam? What are the exam specifications?

CCHI’s CoreCHI knowledge exam (written exam) tests candidate’s knowledge about healthcare interpreting. It has 100 questions distributed across the following domains:

Professional Responsibility and Interpreter Ethics (22% of the exam)
Manage the Interpreting Encounter (22%)
Healthcare Terminology (22%)
U. S. Healthcare System (15%)
Cultural Responsiveness (19%)

For more info, review the CoreCHI Exam Specifications.

I experienced technical issues during testing, who do I contact?

All communication with CCHI about testing experience must be in writing. If you experience any technical issues during testing, you need to do 2 things:

  • tell your proctor about the issues during the exam so he/she may call our IT support staff and assist you right away, or after the exam but before you leave the testing site, AND
  • email us the description of issues at within 24 hours of taking the exam (i.e. the sooner the better).

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