How to Become a Professional Language Translator - The Ultimate Guide

Language Translator Guide: How to Become a Pro

There are plenty of average language translators offering their services on the internet. However, highly qualified and experienced professional translators are much more difficult to come by. To become a language translator, you will need a wide range of all sort of skills and qualities. From top education and quality training to best translation tools to continuous professional development.

IF YOUR GOAL IS TO BECOME A RESPECTED AND WELL PAID LANGUAGE TRANSLATOR (THAT’S WHY YOU’RE HERE, RIGHT?), THEN READING THIS GUIDE IS A MUST!

Language Translator Skill Set

Finding Work as a Language Translator: What has Changed?

There was a time when translators were a truly rare species and finding one verged on the miraculous. Today most translation agencies receive dozens if not hundreds of applications from translators every day.

So how do you find translation work online today? How can you make sure that you stand out from the vast crowd of equally eager translators? Definitely not by spamming the agencies with messages in which you claim to be the best English to French or English to Hindi language translator in the whole universe.

Finding Work as a Language Translator
Language Translator Message

Why not? Because first and foremost, they hear it all the time from other applicants like you. In fact, they have probably already heard it a couple of times today as you read this guide. So what do you do?

You need to make sure your message stands out. And that’s exactly what this guide will prepare you for. It will get you ready for this important battle with thousands of other competitors in your niche and language pair. This guide is a collection of best online resources on how to become a professional language translator.

The Ultimate List of the

Web’s Best Resources for Every Language Translator

FROM WORLD’S TOP TRANSLATION SCHOOLS TO BEST TRANSLATION SOFTWARE

CHAPTERS

Top Translation Schools

CHAPTER 1

Top Translation Schools:

How to start your journey by gaining knowledge and expertise

Ever wondered what makes a brilliant language translator? It would be nice if every translator had a natural talent but unfortunately, not everyone has one. Not to worry. You can still become a brilliant language translator. But you need to start somewhere, right? Well, start with a solid foundation and get qualified as a translator. Below is a list of top translation schools around the world. No matter where you live, you’ll find a great translation course for yourself below.

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Short Courses & Training

CHAPTER 2

Short Courses & Training:
Stand out from the Crowd with Further Courses & Training

So you’ve got your degree and that’s a great start. But you can’t rest on your laurels. To make a great language translator, you need to constantly update your knowledge and skills. Say you want to be an English to Polish or English to German translator. Here you will find all sorts of short courses and training for any language pair. So go ahead and make that CV of yours stand out even more from the crowd.

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Best Translation Tools

CHAPTER 3

Best Translation Tools:
How to Earn More Money More Quickly
with Translation Software

Everyone knows what a huge difference computers and technology in general can make to work efficiency. Now, imagine you also have a piece of software that boosts your work performance by additional 50%, 80% or even 100%. Explore the best software for language translators that’s out there so that you can start making more money more quickly, too.

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Choosing your Specialisations

CHAPTER 4

Choosing your Specialisations:
How Choosing max. 5-10 Specialisations
Can Land you More Jobs and Generate More Income

How come? It’s very simple. Focusing on a maximum of 5 to 10 specialisations will allow you to be really good at what you’re doing. Your clients will surely appreciate your level of expertise. And since you’re an expert in your field, it will let you work faster and increase your revenue as a result. Why? Because you won’t be spending hours researching from scratch every new topic you touch.

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Applying to Translation Agencies

CHAPTER 5

Applying to Translation Agencies:
What (not) to Do to Get Work from a Translation Agency

From making sure your CV stands out to dos and don’ts of applying to a translation agency to finding your first direct clients – this list has you covered. You will also learn about the language translation process and quality assurance. Plus you will find out how to make sure you get paid after you’ve finished the job. So why wait? Dive straight in and you’ll be translating in no time at all!

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Best Translator Portals

CHAPTER 6

Best Translator Portals:
How to Find Even More Work on Major Translator Portals

The opportunities for translators to find work are many. There are various translation portals and associations you can try. You may also want to visit international institutions such as UNESCO or the European Commission. The list also includes this very interesting article with Top 10 tips on becoming a European Commission translator. Happy browsing!

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Building & Promoting a Website

CHAPTER 7

Building & Promoting your Website:
How Building, Optimising and Promoting a Website
Can Get you Much More Translation Work

You may be thinking: “What’s a chapter on building a website doing here? What’s it got to do with language translation?” Think again. Where do you think your clients are going to look for a translator? On the internet, of course. How? Via your website. And what will they do if your website is not on the first (maybe second) page of Google Search Results? They’ll go somewhere else. Simple, right?

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Translator's Best Reads

CHAPTER 8

Translator’s Best Reads:
How Reading Can Turn you into a Pro

Everyone knows how important reading is. Not just for learning and acquiring new skills but also for the sheer pleasure of it. For you as a linguist, reading is also essential for keeping both your source and target languages in top shape.

Below is a list of suggested reads in English. It includes some of the best translation books and journals as well as a collection of best novels published in English in the last few years. And don’t forget to read regularly in your first language, too, if you want to translate like a Pro.

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Useful Translation Resources

CHAPTER 9

Useful Translation Resources:
How to Get More Work Done Faster & Better

From best online English-to-English dictionaries to glossaries and specialist dictionaries. From useful websites and resources for translators to the best free online one-stop source of information. It’s also one of the best translation tools that’s out there – Wikipedia. “What? You must be kidding me.”

Then try translating a product description for an item that no one has ever seen or even heard of yet. To make matters worse, maybe the company operates in an obscure or very high tech niche. So what do you do? Head over to our beloved Wiki and learn about the new subject before you even start working on the translation. You will have already saved hours of internet browsing in search of an explanation that you’ll be able to digest. And if you’re lucky, you may just as well find the very term you’re looking for among the languages on the left. Wikipedia is a life-saving resource for every language translator!

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