Translation Certifications and Certificate Programs

Students in translation certificate programs receive instruction on translating from their native languages to another, such as French to English or English to Spanish. Instruction is provided based on a student's area of interest within the field of translation.

Essential Information

A Certificate in Translation is generally a post-baccalaureate program designed for students who are proficient in at least two languages. Many translation certificate programs are included within M.A. in Translation degree programs. Admission to a master's program requires prior completion of a bachelor's program in a foreign language or a relevant field with foreign language coursework.

Standalone graduate certificate programs are available as well, and some of them have the same admission requirements as master's programs. Other translation certificate programs don't necessarily require a bachelor's degree for admission, though a translation proficiency exam is required.

  • Program Specializations: Medical, Information Technology, Financial and Legal Translation
  • Online Availability: Students can enroll in Spanish/English translation Certificate online by completing an application form, passing a language proficiency test and possibly conducting an interview with a program coordinator
  • Other Requirements: General translation courses are also required to complete the program

Certificate in Translation Certification Program

Classes in a translation certificate program depend on a student's emphasis area in translation, which is based upon their knowledge and expertise of at least two languages. In addition, students can choose a concentration related to a career field where their services are needed most, which teaches them industry-specific vocabulary. Some possible courses include:

  • Advanced translation seminar
  • Translation and computer technology
  • Fundamentals of translation
  • Court interpretation
  • Publishing and Editing
  • Information technology and writing

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) ( reported that the employment of interpreters and translators is anticipated to increase by 46% for the period 2012 to 2022 According to the BLS, the annual median salary of interpreters and translators was $43,590 in May 2014.

Continuing Education Information

Currently, no one organization handles translation certification; however, the American Translators Association (ATA) does award the Certified Translator (CT) credential for U.S. translators in 24 language combinations. The Certified Translator (CT) credential is awarded after a candidate successfully passes a translation exam in their target language. The exam currently tests the ability to write proficiently in a target language, comprehend the source text and correctly utilize various techniques of translation.

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