Ken SubediKen Subedi Do I Need a Translation Degree to Become a Translator?December 3, 2019

Do I Need a Translation Degree to Become a Translator?

This is a question aspirant translators stumble across a lot of times. Many, including job seekers, interested aspirants, and even some of our clients ask us if we need a translation degree to become a translator.

What Does a Translator Do?

A translator converts information from one language to another.

Remember, this doesn’t only include written pieces such as books, documents, and articles. Translators might also need to transcribe audio from speech, songs, etc. and put them in written form.

Yes, translators also help put captions and subtitles in a foreign language in videos and movies.

Another job includes transliteration, which means representing the characters of one language with the letters of another language that the reader can understand. This is to aid people to pronounce foreign words.

Translation degree
Are degrees required for translation?

A Degree is not a Must, But Having One Can Help

As you can see, a translator needs to be fluent in at least two languages. As they primarily work on written sentences, they need to have proper grammar skills in the languages they expertize.

Moreover, as these days, translators also need to transcribe, having good listening skills is necessary. They might even need to understand local slangs, recognize different accents, etc.

Knowing about the local culture and history is mandatory, as well. 

Thus, having a language degree will be an excellent asset for you. In most cases, translators take an academic certification in their second language; this is given that they are already proficient in their mother tongue.

You might need to fulfill some special requirements to become a translator in some countries. For example, in Australia, you need accreditation from the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI) to officially recognize yourself as one. In such cases, having a University degree or some technical qualification may be a must.

So, it also depends on the rules in your region.

Going Through a Translator Training is Still a Good Idea

Most translation training classes consist of rigorous language training, workshops stimulating real working scenarios, and immersion experiences to understand the local culture. As these pieces of training are more specific, they create better validations for your ability. Their certifications may or may not be affiliated to a university, but they will still create a base for an employer or a client to hire you. 

After all, it is all About the Skills

Don’t forget, showcasing good academics and having a degree can give you a translator’s job, but it won’t guarantee you will be successful in this field. In the end, it is the skill and the experience that count. 

Believe us; we are an already established leading translation company in Nepal. We have helped various high profile clients convert English to Nepali, and we also provide services of Nepali language translation to English.

With our credibility, we can say that even if the job looks easy on the surface, it is tough. Many things are going behind the curtains. You need hours of dedication, passion, and consistency to reach to a point your work impresses clients every time.

In conclusion, we can say that you can get a degree or technical certification- no one will stop you. However, you need a lot of drive, discipline, and syntactic efficiency to succeed as a translator.

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