Are nearly all translators certified?
Language professionals are often asked if they are certified. For a language professional to explain why they may not be certified can be challenging. Even when they are telling the truth it may come across as a dodge of the question or as them seeming less than professional.
You may be surprised to learn that a large number of translators are not certified. Similar to many other U.S. professional certificates or credentials, the language industry has varying certification distinctions based on type of service, language pair, or state.
Translator Certification is
- a recognition of a translator’s demonstrated proficiency is a language pair.
- The most widely recognized certification in the U.S. is administered by the American Translators Association (ATA).
- To receive certification a translator must pass a rigorous exam.
- Tests that lead to a credential or certification are usually available for languages that are more widely spoken.
- Currently the ATA offers certification in 26 language combinations.
- The American Translators Association (ATA) has just added Ukrainian>English and Polish>English to their certification program.
- The Arabic Language division of the ATA is currently work to create an English>Arabic certification. (The exam for Arabic>English already exists.)
- The entire process of creating a new exam can take 2 years or more.
- Translators and customers can visit the ATA website to learn more.
If they are not certified are they still qualified?
Since certification exams are not offered in all languages, a translator who is not certified can still be qualified. Many professional translators have years of experience in particular fields and a demonstrated ability to provide quality translation services. Using a translation agency, such as Tone, can be beneficial because the agency assesses a translator's experience, qualifications and credentials on behalf of their customers.
In conclusion, Tone may translate nearly everything, but unfortunately nearly all our translators can not be certified. Since we specialize in several languages of limited diffusion, such as Burmese and Karen it is unlikely a certification exam will ever become available in those language pairs. Even though they may not be certified we still make sure they are qualified. Visit Our Standards of Practice, Careers, and Process page to learn how Tone is a partner in your success. Tune in, turn it up, join us!