Career Library

Translators, terminologists and interpreters

National Occupation Code (NOC): 5125

Translators translate written material from one language to another. Interpreters translate oral communication from one language to another during speeches, meetings, conferences, debates and conversation, or in court or before administrative tribunals. Terminologists conduct research to itemize terms connected with a certain field, define them and find equivalents in another language. Sign language interpreters use sign language to translate spoken language and vice versa during meetings, conversations, television programs or in other instances. Translators, terminologists and interpreters are employed by government, private translation and interpretation agencies, in-house translation services, large private corporations, international organizations and the media, or they may be self-employed. Sign language interpreters work in schools and courts, and for social service agencies, interpretation services, government services and television stations, or they may be self-employed.

Job Duties for Translators, terminologists and interpreters

Translators and translator-revisers
  • Translate a variety of written material such as correspondence, reports, legal documents, technical specifications and textbooks from one language to another, maintaining the content, context and style of the original material to the greatest extent possible
  • Localize software and accompanying technical documents to adapt them to another language and culture
  • Revise and correct translated material
  • May train and supervise other translators.
Terminologists
  • Identify the terminology used in a field of activity
  • Conduct terminological research on a given subject or in response to inquiries for the preparation of glossaries, terminology banks, technological files, dictionaries, lexicons and resource centres, and add to terminological databases
  • Manage, update and circulate linguistic information collected from terminological databases
  • Provide consultative services to translators, interpreters and technical writers preparing legal, scientific or other documents that require specialized terminologies.
Interpreters
  • Interpret oral communication from one language to another aloud or using electronic equipment, either simultaneously (as the speaker speaks), consecutively (after the speaker speaks) or whispered (speaking in a low whisper to one or two persons as the speaker is talking)
  • Provide interpretation services in court or before administrative tribunals
  • May interpret language for individuals and small groups travelling in Canada and abroad
  • May interpret for persons speaking an Aboriginal or foreign language in a variety of circumstances
  • May train other interpreters.
Sign language interpreters
  • Translate sign language to a spoken language and vice versa either simultaneously or consecutively.
Translators, terminologists and interpreters specialize in two languages, such as French and English, the official languages of Canada. They may also specialize in another language and one of the official languages. The main areas of specialization include administrative, literary, scientific and technical translation. Interpreters may specialize in court, parliamentary or conference interpretation. Sign language interpreters work in French and Langue des signes québécoise (LSQ) or in English and American Sign Language (ASL).

Working Conditions for Translators, terminologists and interpreters

Work is usually performed indoors.

Alternate Job Titles

  • American Sign Language (ASL) Interpreter
  • ASL (American Sign Language) Interpreter
  • C. Int. (certified Interpreter)
  • C. Term. (certified Terminologist)
  • C. Tr. (certified Translator)
  • Certified Interpreter (C.Int.)
  • Certified Terminologist (C.Term.)
  • Certified Translator (C.Tr.)
  • Community Interpreter
  • Conference Interpreter
  • Consecutive Interpreter
  • Court Interpreter
  • Cultural Interpreter
  • Cultural Or International Adaptation Specialist
  • Deaf Interpreter
  • Educational Interpreter
  • Elbow Interpreter
  • Escort Interpreter
  • Foreign Broadcast Translator
  • Foreign News Translator
  • Interpreter
  • Interpreter For Persons Who Are Deaf
  • Jurilinguist Translator
  • Legal Terminologist
  • Legal Translator
  • Literary Translator
  • Localiser
  • LSQ (Quebec Sign Language) Interpreter
  • Medical Terminologist
  • Medical Translator
  • Oral Interpreter
  • Quebec Sign Language (LSQ) Interpreter
  • Relay Interpreter
  • Reviser - Translation
  • Scientific Translator
  • Sign Language Interpreter
  • Sign Language Platform Interpreter
  • Simultaneous Interpreter
  • Tactile Interpreter
  • Technical Translator
  • Terminologist
  • Terminology Advisor
  • Translator
  • Translator Adaptor
  • Translator-reviser
  • Transliterator
  • Visual Language Interpreter
  • Community Interpreter
  • Conference Interpreter
  • Court Interpreter
  • Interpreter
  • Legal Terminologist
  • Literary Translator
  • Localiser
  • Medical Terminologist
  • Sign Language Interpreter
  • Terminologist
  • Translator
  • Translator Adaptor
  • Translator-reviser
  • Cultural Interpreter
  • Transliterator