How do I become a certified translator?

Certification can be obtained in one of two ways. Once you have passed the entrance exam and become an associate member of ATIS, you can either apply for certification by writing the Canadian Translators, Terminologists and Interpreters Council (CTTIC) national certification exam, held twice a year, or by submitting a dossier for evaluation at any time.

To apply for certification, you must have either a degree in translation and one year of work experience, or four years of work experience. For official languages (French and English) one year of experience is equivalent to 110,000 words. For other languages, one year of experience is equivalent to 30,000 words.

Your application for certification must include the following:

· Curriculum vitae or other proof of work experience (e.g. general ledger entries)

· Sponsors’ letters (two letters from employers, clients or other certified translators confirming your experience and skill level)

· Official transcripts (if applicable)

· Application form

· Other documents (depending on individual circumstances)

For the on-dossier process, you must also submit 10 to 12 samples of approximately 250 words each of your work for evaluation. These samples should demonstrate skill in a variety of subject areas, and be general and technical in nature. Both the original text and the translation are required, and should be clearly labelled as such. The translations must be your own unrevised work that best reflects your abilities as a translator. The application fee of $200 is payable online once your application is submitted.

We understand that for some language combinations and depending how early it is in your translation career, it can difficult to translate the required number of words per year for your certification application. Ways to increase your number of words include translating newspaper and magazine articles on your own, working with a mentor or volunteering with cultural associations or non-profit organizations. From time to time, we will post requests for volunteer translators and links to organizations that often seek this service.

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