Courses

Career Profile Examples

Study Areas
Course Types

Interpreter

Note: Completion of a TAFE SA course does not guarantee an employment outcome. Formal requirements other than educational qualifications (eg licensing, professional registration), may apply to some occupations.

Job Prospects Average; employment growth for this occupation is expected to grow moderately to 2014-15.
Salary Range $28,000 to $35,000
Brief Whenever two people that don't speak the same language need to communicate, there's a need for an interpreter.

There are approximately 500 interpreters working in South Australia. Interpreters work on average 39.2 hours per week compared to 42.1 hours per week for other occupations with the majority working in the Property and Business Services industry. Most persons in this occupation are females with the main age group between 45-54 years.

Quick Profile Navigation



TAFE SA courses that may be relevant for: Interpreter

Accredited (Award)

Introduction

Interpreters are involved with the translation of the spoken word from one language into another. They might for instance, interpret what someone speaking Japanese is saying into English and then interpret the message back from the English speaker to the Japanese speaker.

A local interpreter who regularly interprets for the Department of Immigration says interpreters must abide by a code of ethics. This code states that they must not change the context of what is said. Even when interpreting for professionals, such as a doctor, interpreters must be able to appropriately interpret any terminology used. She also says that interpreters should ask the relevant speaker to clarify what has been said if the interpreter has not understood the full context of the message.

Similar Interests?

Not quite the career you are looking for? Please try the related course profiles below:

Helping and Community Services

Customer Service Officer,  Massage Therapist,  Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker,  Tourist Information Officer,  Patient Care Assistant,  Landcare Officer,  Library Assistant,  Fitness Instructor,  Medical Administrative Officer,  Personal Assistant,  Financial Planner / Financial Investment Advisers,  Park Ranger,  Aged or Disabilities Carer,  Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages,  Youth Worker or Disability Worker,  Police Officer,  Occupational Health, Safety & Environment Professional,  Counsellor and Community Worker,  Interpreter,  Child Care Worker

Education Requirements

There are 51% of Interpreters who have Bachelor Degrees, 15% who have Post Graduate Degrees, 10% have Certificate I or II and 10% have Graduate Diplomas or Certificates. There are 8% with no post school qualifications but we recommend that you gain the available qualifications to get the best possible chance of employment.

TAFE SA offers courses relevant to this occupation including the Advanced Diploma of Translating. Pathways include the Diploma of Translating and Diploma of Interpreting.

Career Path

Interpreters can work for federal, state or territory government departments concerned with immigration, legal issues and law enforcement, social security and education. They are also employed by organisations such as hospitals, banks, tourist agencies and private interpreting and translating firms.

Employment prospects for interpreters are fairly stable. The demand for certain languages are constantly changing and shortages may arise when suitably skilled people in minority community with language skills are limited. Recent immigration and refugee arrivals affect the need for interpreters as well as the levels of government funding for interpreting services and the general level of business activity.

Many interpreting positions are part time or casual. Interpreters can also work on a freelance contract basis. Persons with NAATI accreditation may freelance and some highly qualified interpreters work at international conferences, and government and/or business meetings.

Industry

Health and Community Services

Interview

To be updated.

Nature of the Job

''In my role at the hospital, I organise interpreter services for patients who need them. If they are Spanish or Italian speaking, I will do the interpreting. But I do not only work as a health interpreter. I am also a community interpreter. I assist migrants and Australians whose work requires that they are able to communicate with their non English speaking clients. I have also interpreted at business meetings and at conferences. "The great thing about interpreting is that you're presented with a vast range of situations. However, it can be very challenging and you do encounter some distressing situations, especially in a hospital environment," says a current interpreter.

Typical Physical Working Environment

These language specialists must be fluent and have an extensive vocabulary in at least two languages and be able to interpret on the spot. As important as it is for an interpreter to be able to speak different languages, its also essential that they understand cultural differences in order to be culturally sensitive. As interpreters work with a wide range of people, its important that they have good communication and interpersonal skills. They should be good listeners and have a good memory. They must also keep up with new words or terms that are introduced into the languages they interpret. Interpreters may opt to specialise in a particular area such as community, health or conference interpreting.

Typical Occupational Example

Interpreters are generally employed on a casual, part time or contract basis. They may find work in various State or Commonwealth government agencies, such as the Department of Immigration and Citizenship or Centrelink. They are also employed by hospitals, the Deaf Society and their skills are utilised by the business community. Interpreters usually register with a Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS).

For further information, contact:

National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (SA)
Level 8, 170 North Terrace, Adelaide SA 5000
Ph: (08) 8410 5233
Fax: (08) 8410 5235
Email: info@naati.com.au

Australian Institute of Interpreters and Translators Inc (National Office - VIC/TAS/SA/NT/WA)
PO Box 193, Surrey Hills VIC 3127
Ph: 1800 284 181
Email: admin@ausit.org
Internet Address: http://www.ausit.org

Earning Potential

Most interpreters earn about 600 per week (before tax). Certain interpreting and translating companies will pay interpreters for a minimum, usually a 90 minute period of work. Employment prospects for interpreters largely depend on the demand for the language(s) they speak which is in turn influenced by political and economic factors that determine the numbers of immigrants and refugees to Australia. Minimum salaries usually begin at $28,000 and go up to $35,000.

Further Information

For further information about all TAFE SA Courses, phone 1800 882 661 or enquire online