Occupation Profile for Interpreters and Translators

Translate or interpret written, oral, or sign language text into another language for others.


$35,560.00 Median Annual Wage 2,000 Average Job Openings Per Year
5.7 Average Unemployment Percentage 15.9 Percentage That Completed High School
41,000 Employment Numbers in 2006 36.3 Percentage That Had Some College
51,000 Employment Numbers in 2016 (est.) 47.8 Percentage That Went Beyond College Degree

Sample Job Titles
Administrative Aide
American Sign Language Interpreter (ASL Interpreter)
Bilingual Interpreter
Bilingual Secretary
Braille Translator
Conference Interpreter
Conference Translator
Court Interpreter
Deaf Interpreter
Diplomatic Interpreter
Educational Interpreter
Foreign Language Interpreter
Freelance Translator
Language Translator
Medical Interpreter
Paraprofessional Interpreter
Per Diem Interpreter
Sign Language Interpreter
Sign Language Translator
Spanish Interpreter
Technical Translator

Related Occupations

Sources: Career Guide to Industries (CGI), Occupational Information Network (O*Net), Occupation Outlook Handbook (OOH)
  • Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Engineering and Technology — Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Sales and Marketing — Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Medicine and Dentistry — Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
  • Physics — Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
  • Equipment Maintenance — Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
  • Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Troubleshooting — Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
  • Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Stamina — The ability to exert yourself physically over long periods of time without getting winded or out of breath.
  • Explosive Strength — The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
  • Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Hearing Sensitivity — The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
  • Supplemental — Educate students, parents, staff, and teachers about the roles and functions of educational interpreters.
  • Supplemental — Adapt software and accompanying technical documents to another language and culture.
  • Core — Translate messages simultaneously or consecutively into specified languages, orally or by using hand signs, maintaining message content, context, and style as much as possible.
  • Supplemental — Train and supervise other translators or interpreters.
  • Core — Check translations of technical terms and terminology to ensure that they are accurate and remain consistent throughout translation revisions.
  • Monitoring and Controlling Resources — Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.
  • Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates — Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
  • Assisting and Caring for Others — Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
  • Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment — Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Related College Curriculum
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