Translation and Interpreting

What Is a Translation and Interpreting Degree?

With an unknown number of written languages and an estimated 6,000 to 7,000 spoken languages, translation and interpretation ability is in very high demand in today’s world. Governments and International delegations rely upon translators and interpreters on a daily basis in political and international relations. Businesses rely upon translators and interpreters in global commerce and industry. Even professional athletes rely upon translators and interpreters when playing their sport outside of their home country. These linguists specialise in communication amongst the many different cultures to keep the world globally focused as opposed to singularly focused.

Translation and interpretation is also very important outside of the political and business arenas. Many people rely upon translators and interpreters when visiting foreign countries on holiday. The availability of people capable of speaking multiple languages has increased tourism, opening the door to travellers who might not otherwise visit a foreign land. Many people are intimidated by the thought of navigating through a community without the ability to speak or read the language. Translators and interpreters give the tourists the reassurance that their needs will be met by someone they understand.

Translation and interpretation also plays a key role in education. Many historical accountings have been translated in numerous languages so students understand the verbiage and learn. Many people choose to learn other languages, and translators and interpreters help teach students a foreign tongue. Translation and interpreting has numerous useful applications, and a translation and interpreting degree is an important feather any student, who is strong in linguistics, may place in his or her cap.

Job Opportunities

Students graduating with their translator and interpreting degree will begin work with language in one form or another. Many become translators.

A translator works with written word, translating the material from its original language into the desired “target language,” as it is called. Translators must convey the original text as closely as they can in the converted text, ensuring that there is no mix up in the interpretation of the translated text. Translators are usually expected to have a proficiency in two or more languages; the more written languages the translator masters, the higher the probability the translator will find work. Translators are usually freelance workers, so the salaries vary widely. Entry-level translators might earn £3,800 to £4,300 per month; senior translators can earn on average £14,800 to £16,000 per month.

Interpreters work with the spoken – or hand signed – word. Interpreters are the liaison between persons communicating in different languages. Interpreters must be quick to hear and memorize what one person is saying, relay the message to the other person or people and vice versa. Specialised interpreters also work with the hearing impaired, interpreting spoken word into sign language. Interpreters work in numerous capacities, from interpreting a discussion between two individuals to interpreting international delegations whilst they are happening. Much like translators, interpreters usually freelance, and salaries range from £110 to £500 per day.

Translation and Interpreting Curriculum

Languages are the primary focus in the translation and interpreting degree curriculum. Students are prepared to not only read, write and speak foreign language, they are also prepared to understand the social applications of navigating between two dialects and their related cultures. Students desiring to work with the disabled will specialise their translation and interpreting curriculum to include sign language studies. In most cases, students will work in real-life translation and interpreting situations to gain much-needed experience for their post-graduate career choice.

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