Translation & Interpretation
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Students earn college credit in the Translation and Interpretation (T&I) program?
All T&I certificate classes are graded and students earn three credits for each class in which they receive a satisfactory grade. Because T&I is a credit program, this also means that new students must submit a college admission application to Bellevue College prior to registering for classes. Even though the T&I Certificate Program is managed under Bellevue College's Continuing Education division, it is a credit program.
Are students who complete the Translation and/or Interpretation Certificate tracks "certified" translators and/or interpreters?
Students who have successfully completed all required courses in the Translation and/or Interpretation Certificate tracks earn an academic certificate of accomplishment—like a diploma—in translation and/or interpretation from BCC. This credential proves that students have successfully completed a course of study and training in either/both of these professions, and therefore have achieved a professional level of skills. Graduates of the program are qualified to begin working as professionals immediately, but the program does not provide "certification." Becoming certified is similar to obtaining a license in other professions: it is a separate process—sometimes optional—by which a qualified translator or interpreter passes an exam or exams administered by a recognized organization, such as the American Translators Association (ATA), the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC), and the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS).
What language skills are required for the program?
Generally, potential students need the equivalent of a college-level proficiency in two languages to be admitted to the program. Potential students must provide credentials or language assessment results to that effect. In particular, English must be at a high enough level (i.e., TOEFL score of 580) to understand and succeed in T&I courses, but also to become a successful language professional. Also, prior to completing their second course in the program, students pursuing a Translation and/or Interpretation Certificate are required to submit a certificate application, part of which is an assessment of students' non-English language skills.
Are T&I Certificate Program courses available as online or distance classes?
Presently, courses are not available in an online or distance format.
Can those who are not US citizens or permanent residents be admitted to the program?
Yes, but any potential students who are not US citizens or permanent residents are required to apply and be admitted to Bellevue College through International Student Programs.
Can students still take classes in the T&I Certificate Program even if their language is not offered at the language-specific level of the program?
Yes. In fact, students whose language is not offered stand to gain an enormous amount of critical hands-on training because they can take up to six non-language-specific certificate classes. This training is invaluable experience in preparing for actual work, taking certification exams, and gaining credentials for résumés.
How do I get my certificate?
You must complete all required and elective courses in your program before receiving a Certificate of Completion. Once you’ve completed all your courses, click here to Request a Certificate of Completion. You’ll be asked to complete a brief program survey, and then will be directed to the certificate request page. Your request will be forwarded electronically to an advisor for review. You will be contacted by the college if there are any questions. You can expect to receive your Certificate of Completion in the mail about three weeks after filling out your request.
Is it possible to pursue a Translation Certificate and an Interpretation Certificate simultaneously?
Yes. In fact, many of the course requirements for the certificates overlap such that students pursuing both certificates (where offered) need to complete successfully only four additional classes to earn the second certificate.