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Interpretation Recruitment Toolkit

What’s Interpretation?

Interpreters connect visitors to important natural, cultural, and historical resources at parks, nature centers, historical sites, aquariums, zoos, and anywhere that people come to learn about places.

In the video above, interpreters explain in their own words who interpreters are and why it’s important. – NAI Website.

Definitions for interpretation vary. Examples include:

Freeman Tilden

“An educational activity which aims to reveal meanings and
relationships through the use of original objects, by firsthand experience, and by illustrative media, rather then simply to communicate factual information.”

Dr. Sam Ham

“Interpretation is an approach to communication…it involves
translating the technical language of a natural science or related field into terms and ideas that people who aren’t scientists can readily understand.”

National Association for Interpretation (NAI)

“Interpretation is a purposeful approach to communication that facilitates meaningful, relevant, and inclusive experiences that deepen understanding, broaden perspectives, and inspire engagement with the world around us.”

Photo Courtesy of Jim Malusa, University of Arizona

National Park Service (NPS)

“Interpretation facilitates a connection between the interests of the visitor and the meanings of the resource.”

Photo Courtesy of Lian Law, National Park Service

Depending on the type of content the user is looking for. Navigate to either the “Recruitment Media” or “Additional Resources” tab in the upper right hand corner of the screen.

Within both of the tabs there are numerous types of ready-to-use recruitment media organized by type of content. Click on the relevant type of media to browse relevant content.

Download relevant media or email to request access to the content.

Use the content and media gathered from this site to engage youth and young adults in the field of interpretation.

About the Tool

This interactive tool was built Student Pipeline Taskforce Members in Spring 2022. The tool supports the The National Association of Interpretation.

Learn More

NAI Website

About National Association for Interpretation (NAI)

NAI is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit professional organization dedicated to advancing the profession of heritage interpretation, currently serving about 7,000 members in the United States, Canada, and over thirty other nations. Individual members include those who work at parks, museums, nature centers, zoos, botanical gardens, aquariums, historical and cultural sites, commercial tour companies, and theme parks.

Photo Courtesy of Pima County, Arizona