Translators, Terminologists, and Interpreters

(NOC 5125)

in All Art, Culture, Recreation and Sport

Translators translate written material from one language to another. Terminologists carry out research required to translate and interpret technical, professional, and scientific vocabulary and material. Interpreters translate spoken communication from one language to another during speeches, meetings, conferences, debates, and conversation, or in court or before administrative tribunals. Sign language interpreters use sign language to translate spoken language and vice versa during meetings, conversations, television programs or in other instances. They work for 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. Translators, terminologists, and interpreters specialize in two languages like 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.

Job Outlook

Average

Read more

  • Estimate Stable employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 35 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate Moderate rate of unemployment in 2019

Compared to: All Art, Culture, Recreation and Sport

  • Estimate 60 employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 765 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “average”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This is not a large occupation in Nova Scotia, with employment around 275. The number employed in this occupation is expected to remain largely the same over the next few years. With a moderate percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to contribute somewhat to employment opportunities over the coming years. Translators, Terminologists, and Interpreters may either be working full-time or part-time hours. Also, a large percentage of the workforce is self-employed which should be an important consideration for those thinking about employment in the occupation.

The median employment income for 38% of Translators, Terminologists, and Interpreters who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $54,041. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

N/A

Minimum

N/A

Median

N/A

Maximum

Annual Pay

$4,825

Minimum

$29,980

Median

$74,671

Maximum

Compared to: All Art, Culture, Recreation and Sport

Hourly Pay

$12.55

Minimum

$24.73

Median

$36.29

Maximum

Annual Pay

$945

Minimum

$11,712

Median

$60,447

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Translators translate written material from one language to another. Terminologists carry out research required to translate and interpret technical, professional, and scientific vocabulary and material. Interpreters translate spoken communication from one language to another during speeches, meetings, conferences, debates, and conversation, or in court or before administrative tribunals. Sign language interpreters use sign language to translate spoken language and vice versa during meetings, conversations, television programs or in other instances.

They work for 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.

Translators, terminologists, and interpreters specialize in two languages like 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.

Job duties

Translators and translator-revisers:

  • Translate a variety of written material like 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.
  • Research terminology for a given subject or 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 consulting services to translators, interpreters, and technical writers preparing legal, scientific or other documents that require specialized terminologies.

Interpreters:

  • Interpret spoken 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.
  • Interpreters may specialize in court, parliamentary or conference interpretation.

Sign language interpreters:

  • Translate sign language to a spoken language and vice versa either simultaneously or consecutively.
  • Sign language interpreters work in French and Langue des signs quebecoise (LSQ) or in English and American Sign Language (ASL).

Sample job titles

  • certified interpreter (C.Int.)
  • certified terminologist (C.Term.)
  • certified translator (C.Tr.)
  • deaf interpreter
  • interpreter
  • legal terminologist
  • medical terminologist
  • sign language interpreter
  • terminologist
  • translator

Skills

You must have a thorough knowledge of at least two languages and excellent writing skills. Translators usually translate into their native language. To work as an interpreter you should have excellent oral expression, a good memory, and the ability to concentrate well. You must also be able to think quickly and clearly. As an ASL/English interpreter, you should have physical stamina and manual dexterity.

Job requirements

  • A university degree in translation with a specialization in translation, interpretation, or terminology in two languages including at least one of the two official languages, or a university degree in a related discipline like languages, linguistics, philology and courses in linguistic transfer and two years' experience as a full-time translator working in two languages, at least one of which is an official language, or five years of experience as a full-time translator working in two languages, at least one of which is an official language, are required.
  • Sign language interpreters need a college training program or a university certificate in sign language interpretation.
  • Certification on dossier or by examination from the Canadian Translators, Terminologists and Interpreters Council may be required for translators, terminologists, and interpreters.
  • Sign language interpreters may require a certificate or certification evaluation in LSQ or ASL.
  • Membership in a provincial or territorial association of translators, interpreters and terminologists may be required.
  • Membership in a provincial association of sign language interpreters may be required.

Other considerations

Job opportunities may grow as Nova Scotian businesses expand their marketing efforts to include foreign customers and require translators to communicate. Fluency in three languages is usually required for translators or interpreters working in an international context

By the numbers

Quick look

265

employed in 2016

58.5%

employed full-time

50.9%

self employed

69.8%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
30.2%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
43.6

median age

Compared to: All Art, Culture, Recreation and Sport

11,000

employed in 2016

53.3%

employed full-time

29.3%

self employed

55.6%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
44.4%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
38.2

median age

Where will I likely work?

77.4%

Halifax

9.4%

Annapolis Valley

7.5%

North Shore

5.7%

Southern

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

North Shore

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

71.8%

Professional, scientific and technical services

12.8%

Public administration

5.1%

Information and cultural industries

5.1%

Real estate and rental and leasing

5.1%

Arts, entertainment and recreation

What is the age of Employment?

28.0%

35-44

21.0%

45-54

19.0%

25-34

15.0%

55-64

9.0%

65+

8.0%

15-24

Compared to: All Art, Culture, Recreation and Sport

29.7%

15-24

15.9%

35-44

15.7%

45-54

15.4%

25-34

14.9%

55-64

Top levels of education

30.2%

Bachelor

$47,799 median annual income
24.5%

Master

$16,592 median annual income
20.8%

College Diploma

$27,529 median annual income
11.3%

High school

N/A
3.8%

Less than high school

N/A

Compared to: All Art, Culture, Recreation and Sport

26.4%

Bachelor

$17,829 median annual income
24.9%

High school

$7,552 median annual income
19.5%

College Diploma

$22,120 median annual income
13.7%

Less than high school

$2,922 median annual income
7.9%

Master

$36,173 median annual income

Education & training

American Sign Language (ASL)

College, Trades, or University Program

These programs focus on American Sign Language as a visual and motor medium of communication and discourse for deaf individuals and deaf culture. They include courses in the development of ASL, ASL morphology and syntax, signing technique, English translation of ASL, formal and colloquial ASL, and ASL transcription.

Institutions providing this program

Nova Scotia Community College - Ivany Campus

Dartmouth, NS

Ethnic, Cultural Minority, Gender, and Group Studies

College or University Program

These programs focus on the history, sociology, politics, culture, and economics of various racial and ethnic groups, women’s studies, gay/lesbian studies, folklore studies, disability studies, and deaf studies.

Institutions providing this program

Acadia University

Wolfville, NS

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

University of King's College

Halifax, NS

Mount Saint Vincent University

Halifax, NS

Universite Sainte-Anne

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS

St. Francis Xavier University

Antigonish, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Cape Breton University

Sydney, NS

French Language and Literature (Canada)

College or University Program

These programs focus on the French language, including its history, structure and related communications skills, and the literature and culture of French-speaking peoples.

Institutions providing this program

Acadia University

Wolfville, NS

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

University of King's College

Halifax, NS

Universite Sainte-Anne

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS

St. Francis Xavier University

Antigonish, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Cape Breton University

Sydney, NS

Language Interpretation and Translation

College or University Program

These programs prepare students to be professional interpreters and/or translators of documents and data files, either from English or French into another language or languages or vice versa. They include courses of an intensive nature in one or more languages plus courses in subjects such as single and multiple-language interpretation, one- or two-way interpretation, simultaneous interpretation, general and literary translation, business translation, technical translation, and other specific applications of linguistic skills.

Institutions providing this program

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

University of King's College

Halifax, NS

Universite Sainte-Anne

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS

Romance Languages, Literatures and Linguistics

College or University Program

These programs focus on the Romance languages of Western, Central, and Southern Europe. They include courses in philology, linguistics, dialects and pidgins, literature, and applications to business, science/technology, and other settings.

Institutions providing this program

Acadia University

Wolfville, NS

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

University of King's College

Halifax, NS

Mount Saint Vincent University

Halifax, NS

St. Francis Xavier University

Antigonish, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Employment requirements & contacts

No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile

Contacts

Association of Visual Language Interpreters of Canada
Pickering, ON
Association of Translators and Interpreters of Nova Scotia
Halifax, NS
Canadian Translators and Interpreters Council
Ottawa, ON

Additional resources

There are no additional resources for this occupation.