Employers, including hospitals, schools and the court system, often hire certified interpreters. Certification gives employees proof that you can effectively and efficiently communicate with people who speak a different language. For the busy woman juggling family and home, obtaining an online certification is an option that allows you to work at your own pace.
Types of Certification
Several online sites offer certification in many languages. The website Culture Advantage, for instance, offers online certification in Spanish, Mandarin, Russian, Arabic, Korean and Portuguese. There are several types of certification in various job fields, including medical and legal interpretation. Also, general or basic interpreter certifications without a specialty are available online as well. Knowing which type you want to practice makes it easy to pick an online certification program that works best.
An online training program often provides detailed coursework in the field you choose. If you choose the medical interpretation certification, for instance, the course highlights anatomy and medical terminology. Most certification courses, including basic certification, concentrate on cultural competency and ethics. Grammar, vocabulary, including numbers, dates and names, and slang, are also part of the online course needed for certification.
If you speak and understand a foreign language really well, you may sign up to take the basic interpreter certification exam online without completing a training course. Otherwise, sign up to take the training course and prepare for the examination by completing the coursework. The online exam required to become a certified interpreter covers language proficiency, cultural understanding, ethics and applied skills.
After you finish the online training, sign up for the proctored exam online as directed by the Interpreter Education website. This requires you to have a high-speed Internet connection and a headset with a microphone. When you pass the computer-generated, proctored exam, you are a certified interpreter. Usually the company mails your certificate, but you can print a copy online if you want.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for interpreters and translators is expected to grow by 42 percent through 2020. People who live in the U.S. and do not speak English is the major reason for the job growth, as well as an increase in global communications. The BLS also states that employment opportunities are highest for certificate holders. So, if you want to be an interpreter, becoming certified with an online program is highly recommended.
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