How do I Become a Turkish Translator?

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  • Written By: Vanessa Harvey
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 28 March 2019
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There is more than one way you can become a Turkish translator, but all of them involve acquiring certain skills and being able to prove that you possess them. The most obvious skill to obtain is the mastery of the Turkish language and at least one other language. Turkish and the other language will form what is known as your "language pair." Some professional translators may translate to and from either language of a pair, and others may be limited to translating to or from only one of the languages. Your preparation to become a Turkish translator will depend on the personal choices you make for this career.

Among the questions you might ask yourself is if you want to translate to and from either language of your language pair. For example, if you speak Turkish and English, you generally are advised to determine whether you will translate from Turkish to English, from English to Turkish, or both. Be aware that some employers or clients require that all of their translators translate only into their native language. Many people in the world speak two languages just as well as native speakers of each language because they grew up communicating in both of them. If this is your case, a simple explanation to a client or potential employer usually will suffice to override any translation restrictions relating to a language pair.


Holding professional credentials generally is very valuable for anyone preparing to become a Turkish translator. You will encounter potential clients and employers who require a degree from a regionally accredited school of higher education. Various degrees are accepted in the field as proof of your knowledge of the Turkish language and the one that will form a pair with it. A bachelor's degree, Master of Arts or certificate awarded to you by a regionally accredited institution usually will suffice for required credentials. It is, however, equally important to acquire verifiable work experience as an employee or volunteer in the field of translation.

Keep in mind that translation refers to written material, whereas interpretation refers to the oral use of language. Experience as an interpreter might not be recognized as the equivalent of experience as a translator. The more experience you have, the better your chances of securing paid work. Organizations that could need your services and might be willing to utilize volunteers include the International Red Cross, religious ministries and social services that operate in Turkish-speaking communities.

If you would like to become a Turkish translator who translates to or from English, you might be interested in securing certification by the American Translators Association (ATA). Your residence does not have to be in the United States. The ATA is internationally recognized as an association of professional translators of the highest quality. It also serves as a job bank for members looking for paid freelance work.

Turkish, like most other languages, has various dialects, so it's generally a good idea to know the most widespread one. You might also want to consider specializing in a specific field. For example, you could choose to become a Turkish translator in the medical field, in which case you would concentrate heavily on medical terminology in Turkish and your target language.



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