Translator Education and Qualifications
Though it is pretty simple to become a translator or interpreter, there is a process involved in developing a career in this field. The process can be long and challenging at times but it is well worth the effort when you have a career that is personally and financially satisfying. If you are considering becoming one of the millions of people who are successfully working as translators and interpreters then you should understand what the education and qualification requirements are for career field. Knowing what is required of you beforehand will assist you in making the best choices that ensure success.
Theoretically, if you are fluent in two languages you can work as a linguist. Having said that, you should know that the majority of employers require translators to have a college degree and preferably a bachelor's. You are not required to have a degree in the secondary languages you speak. In fact, many employers prefer that you graduate with a degree in a different field because the education will provide you with specialized knowledge that will assist you in your career. However, you should still make sure you are taking language courses if only to provide you with continuous opportunities to practice your language skills.
In addition to having a formal bachelor's degree in the subject of your choice, it is also a good idea to get certified. A translator certification program will provide you with the skills you need to be successful in the industry. Passing the test will gain you professional credentials which will increase your customer's confidence in your skills. There are programs offered online which is probably the best way to take the program. Online schools allow you to study for classes when it is convenient for you. This allows you to maintain your life while still being able to obtain the certification you need to further your career.
In addition to education and certification, other qualifications a translator needs to have are good writing and speaking skills. Your translations need to be clear and understandable. Therefore, you need to make sure you understand the grammar and spelling rules of each language you know. If you are doing verbal interpreting, you need to be able to listen, translate, and speak all at the same time. This can be difficult at first but gets easier as you do it. Practice each of these skills as much as you can until you are an expert.
-By Adriana Tassini
The following Translator Q & A is part of our Translator FAQ Series.Question:Answer: Learn more: