What Are Popular Jobs for Translators?

Translators facilitate written communication between speakers of different languages. Their services are required in many industries. Three popular fields for translators are explored in this article. Schools offering Applied Communications degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Translation Career Overview

Translators work with written documents, articles and communications, translating to and from different languages to ensure that as many people as possible have access to the information. Translators are employed in many fields that have a multicultural audience and require written information.

Although formal training is not necessary to become a translator if you are already fluent in English and another language, most employers prefer hiring individuals with a bachelor's degree and specialized training in translation studies. Additionally, passing standard translation tests or earning certification may be advantageous in the job market. The American Translators Association, the U.S. Department of State and the National Association of Judiciary Interpreters and Translators all offer skills examinations.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for translators and interpreters is excellent. An 18% increase in employment is expected from 2016-2026, and opportunities for translators of Spanish, Italian, French, Portuguese, German, Arabic, Japanese, Chinese and Korean should be strong. As of 2018, interpreters and translators earned a median annual salary of $49,930.

Important Facts About Popular Jobs for Translators

On-the-Job Training Specialized training may be required and dependent upon occupation
Key Skills Excellent listening, speaking, and writing ability, patience and manners, cultural awareness
Licensure Requirements for a professional license will vary by state
Similar Occupations Writers, authors, teachers, medical transcriptionists, adult literacy and high school equivalency diploma teachers

Court Translation

Many translators work in the court system. They research cases in languages other than English and translate the information to English. They may also take witness statements or affidavits and use them to prepare briefs in English or another language. Translators prepare case materials for both sides in court proceedings. Their work ensures that all people involved in a case have access to the materials used in those court proceedings.

Document Translation

Document translators take works in English and rewrite them in other languages. They may work with magazine articles, books, scientific materials, technical manuals and instructions. Translators make it possible for people to read instruction manuals for products produced anywhere in the world. Document translators can work for any company and may even work for themselves. Book translation is the most common field for translators to work in. Publishing houses use these translations to make fiction and non-fiction works more widely available.


Some translators even work for the government. They may work for instructional institutions like schools and universities. Other translators work for the State Department, keeping relations strong with foreign-speaking countries. The paperwork and communications that these countries send to the United States need to be translated into English so workers can perform their duties effectively.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Ashford University

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  • Southern New Hampshire University

    Southern New Hampshire University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Master
      • Masters - English
    • Bachelor Degrees

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  • Regent University

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    Popular programs at Regent University:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

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  • Full Sail University

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  • Penn Foster High School

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  • Southwestern College

    Campus Locations:

    • California: Chula Vista
  • University of Minnesota

    Campus Locations:

    • Minnesota: Minneapolis
  • University of Iowa

    Campus Locations:

    • Iowa: Iowa City
  • Virginia Commonwealth University

    Campus Locations:

    • Virginia: Richmond