What does the translator career path have in store?
A lot of people believe that being a translator is an insanely easy job. This is because of the belief that all that’s required is for you to be fluent in more than one language apart from your own. While this is true to some extent, the reality is that there is more to being a translator than just translating words, stated in either written or oral forms from one language to another.
In order for you to become an effective translator, you ought to immerse yourself cross-culturally, of your own and the language you are translating to. Furthermore, you have to be keen on the context, as well as be wary and sensitive regarding values and ethics, given that the usage of certain words, which can be normal in a certain society could be considered “taboo” or offensive to some.
Loosely defined, a translator is a person who translates the language being used to another, either in written documents or in conversations, whether oral or virtual. They allow communication to ensue, where the process of translation breaks the so-called “language barrier”.
This would effectively allow both parties concerned to understand and come into terms with each other. Translators obviously have to be proficient in multiple languages, as they try to change words originally written in one language to the closest “equivalent” to that of the other, and this can be done with careful consideration on the context in which it is used.
Who can be Translators?
This is a career path which could be pursued by those who have finished a degree in any Foreign Language Studies, but translation from English to other languages could be covered in English Language Studies as well. It could be a specialization, and is a common subject in this particular field.
It could also be a degree altogether, with schools offering a Bachelor’s in Translation. There are some people, however, who have been proficient in more than one language, with 2 languages or more being used as the communication medium in their homes, which is common in families who have immigrated to a country that speaks a different language than their native tongue. There are several schools which offer short courses for those who are fluent in multiple languages, in order for them to learn the necessary ethics and practical skills to be efficient translators.
The salary of translator greatly varies, depending on where he or she decides to work in. On average, it’s one of the good-paying jobs for those who finished language studies, given that the average wage for a translator is around $20 per hour.
If you’re a freelance translator however, there are firms that teach you how to properly set your initial hourly rate, which is good enough for your degree and effort, and would be a win-win situation for both you and your client.
The great advantage about being a freelance translator is the fact that you are not bound by any contract, and you could get to work with other firms or jobs side-by-side for an over-all bigger pay.
Where you are usually employed
There are several fields that would require translators to a great extent. That is why it wouldn’t be difficult for you to find a translating job the moment you actually finish your studies, and get your diploma or certificate.
These fields include the law field, which would require translators for clients who are neither proficient nor fluent in the English language who need to avail of legal services in an English-speaking country. You could also find yourself translating legal documents, such as agreements, depositions, and during court trials.
Another field in which they are popular is the medical field, in which translators could be employed to help patients and doctors, nurses, etc. communicate with each other, especially in countries where more than one language is spoken.
Moreover, they could also translate medical records, as well as prescriptions. Other fields include the field of Literature, where you could make a living out of translating iconic foreign novels into your local language. Also Sign Language Interpretation, as well as for general localization purposes, such as conferences and communities, which could involve delegates coming from different countries.
These firms are the ultimate to go to for employment purposes among those who wish to become a translator. Some of these popular firms include the International Translating Company, the US Translation Company, Translation Services USA, Straker Translations, among others.
Their rates are usually per job, and some of these are employed in prestigious events, with the most common being beauty pageants. Over-all, there are other translation firms you could choose from should you decide to pursue a career as a translator.
How do they Work?
Being a translator is a relatively easy job, given the descriptions above. Most of the work of a translator can be done at home, as they receive documents and files that they would have to translate online, specifically through email.
There are some translators, however, that would travel to conferences to translate talks and speeches in real time. This could be mentally and physically stressful, and could involve working in pairs. Sign-Language interpreters could also be sent to live telecast events, in order for the deaf-mute to understand speeches fully instead of relying on lip reading.
If you really want to pursue the job of a translator, then it’s going to be relatively easy one for you. Being multilingual could be an edge if you want to further your translating career. There are several means for you to become one, either through short courses or pursing a bachelor’s degree in language or translation.
Moreover, it is one of the good-paying, less laborious jobs, but are nevertheless, very necessary in a lot of fields, especially in the fields of law and medicine, and in various disciplines that would require people who speak different languages to communicate and exchange ideas with each other.
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