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May 5, 2022By legaltranslationsGeneral

How to Be a Certified Interpreter in Australia

Australia is a multinational and multilingual country, which means not everyone speaks English fluently, so there is a regular need for interpreters. The best translator and interpreter is one who has been accredited by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI).

How to become a NAATI certified translator or interpreter in Australia

You won’t be able to access a well paid interpreter or translator’s job unless you have been certified and accredited by NAATI. If you are eager to work as an interpreter in Australia you are expected to pass examinations once you have completed an interpreter’s training course at a reputable Australian educational organisation. Most of the larger universities in Australia offer suitable courses for training professional translators and interpreters. As soon as you have passed the course you will still need to seek accreditation from NAATI.


    This will allow you to gain access to jobs in the federal and state sectors as a translator or interpreter. This applies to the courts as every court-approved interpreter needs to have been accredited by NAATI. If you have recently migrated to Australia you may be eligible to apply for NAATI accreditation as an interpreter or translator so that you can take up a career in one these two fields.

    There is a unique process for getting a court interpreter certificate and once you have qualified and you have been hired as a court interpreter you are expected to be present in court so that you can interpret for people who do not have English as their first language. There is always a demand for interpreters in several languages. This includes Korean, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Arabic, Spanish, Farsi, Hindi and Urdu.

    A certified interpreter is important to every federal and state government department. They are required when poor communication is likely to be the outcome between the government and anyone living in the community who is not yet totally fluent in English and is likely to misunderstand any messages conveyed to him or her. For example, interpreters can be very useful in a big, urban hospital where a diagnostic mistake of a patient’s medical condition could take place which could be fatal.

    Refugees need interpreters and translators

    Qualified and certified interpreters are often required to handle difficulties with communication with refugees, who may not have a full understanding of English. Interpreters are able to help organize accommodation, offer easy to understand explanations of how the Australian health system works, and the route that needs to be taken when filing applications for federal benefits and jobs.

    What type of training does an interpreter require?

    To best prepare for NAATI certification of an interpreter’s qualifications is to complete a full interpreter training course. This includes the following course content:

    • learn how to construct glossaries for interpreting and translating assignments;
    • preparation to translate and interpret;
    • learn how to apply standards and codes to ethical practice;
    • gain experience of manage discourses in general environments;
    • engage in reading and analysing special purpose English texts that need to be translated.


    The demand for certified interpreters has remained constant and does not appear to be growing. This is partly due to the introduction of new technology that helps to eliminate the need for interpreters. Interpreters & translators do follow quite similar career paths, but the job of an interpreter involves more face to face communication. Interpreters need to do the job asked of them immediately as they are often only given a few minutes to access a job. Face to face interpreting may be required for a hospital patient at very little notice. If an accident has taken place and some of those involved only have a poor understanding of English an interpreter may be called out at short notice to complete the job.

    Last Updated On:  March 10, 2023 By legaltranslations General

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