Translator job description

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Translators are required to facilitate the cross-cultural written communication of today´s society by converting texts from one language into another. These professionals must understand the subject matter of documents in order to translate information to other languages. They need to manipulate sentences and ideas to have the same coherence of the source language text. People in this area may work at translation agencies or even from their own homes as freelance workers.

Translators usually perform many of the following tasks:
• Adapting documents from one language to another.
• Helping others with vocabulary questions.
•   Creating glossaries.
• Translating important texts for governments.
• Researching about specific topics.


• Being perseverant.
• Having problem solving skills.
• Being aware of cultural contexts.
• Having specialized knowledge to communicate ideas.
• Having excellent writing and editing skills.
• Being confident about communication patterns.
• Having understanding about subject matter of texts.
• Being fluent in at least two languages.
• Having strong reading comprehension skills.
• Being self-motivated.


Persons who want to be Translators need to be fluent in two languages and in most cases they are required to have a bachelor´s degree as a minimum. Students can start this career by having courses about English comprehension and writing, computers, and foreign languages at high school. Advantages that have some candidates are engaging in direct contact with foreign cultures, reading extensively on a variety of subjects in other languages, and spending time abroad. Experience is one of the most valuable points for this business because many agencies use only people who have worked for more than three years in this area.

Professionals working on this sector can have certifications offered by the American Translator Association. This institution has certifications for 24 language combinations involving English.

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