Today I turn in my last assignment of what should be my last course towards a Certificate in Translation (French to English) from New York University’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies (SCPS). I began the series of online classes in early 2011 with the obligatory introduction course. Since then, I’ve learned more specifically about translating journalism, legal documents, and commercial texts. I was also introduced to various translation technologies and methods of term management.
This series of courses was well worth the time and money I invested in them. Working with seasoned professional translators has benefited me more than I even expected. My comfort with translation tasks has grown exponentially. My ability to research and verify new terms in less-familiar fields has certainly improved. And the best part is, the skills I gained apply to more than just French-language projects!
Just last week I was faced with a quick turnaround, large volume of Hungarian legal documents, and I was able to tackle them with barely a quiver of anxiety—after all, through my French translation classes, I’ve been exposed to legal language already. I know what the English should sound like when I’m done. I’ve worked hard on expanding my glossaries. What a difference a couple years’ work makes!
If you are a translator looking to develop your skills, but you don’t have time or money to pursue full-time master’s-level coursework, consider the program offered through NYU. They take care in choosing professionals that have on-the-ground experience, not just expertise in theory. Through online and web-chat discussions, you are certain to pick up lots of useful information about not only your key task (translation), but the broader skills needed for conducting your business. You’ll build a network of same-language translators you can confidently turn to for queries or overflow work. If you are interested in learning a new industry or task (précis-writing or subtitling, maybe?), you can try that out, too. Really, you’ve got nothing to lose!
What ways have you developed your translation skills? Do you rely on classroom-based learning, or do you prefer to self-teach? Share your favorite methods here!