Monthly News Archives: April 2015


Thinking about Taking the ATA Translation Certification Exam?

What a major achievement for OSTI to bring the ATA certification exam to Portland in October this year! Translators of the 26 language combinations offered will have the opportunity to take the exam in their own backyard, so to speak!

Two of our OSTI members, Lotte and Susanne, have formed a study group for English to German translators. Their approach is to select a current newspaper article from a renowned newspaper like the New York Times, Financial Times or Reuters and adapt it to exam length (225 to 275 words).

Both translate the text passage under exam conditions, i.e. handwritten and without the use of online resources in 1½ hours (the exam requires the translation of two passages in 3 hours). They submit their translation to each other for editing and then meet in person to discuss their mistakes, possible alternative translations, the general quality of the translation and the possible grading according to the flow chart for error point decisions published by the ATA.

To learn more about the eligibility requirements as well as the application process for the exam, you can check out the ATA website which offers a plethora of information on the subject. There is a free webinar available that answers just about any question you might have – you can find it by clicking this link.

A more personal account on the certification process that is worth looking into can be found on ATA-certified French to English translator Corinne McKay’s blog “Thoughts on Translation”.

Are you thinking about forming a study group for your language pair and looking for partners yourself? Just get in touch with membership at or write an email to the listserv (a member benefit)! Good luck with your exam!

When you are ready to register for the exam, you have to register with the ATA, not with OSTI. Click here to register! There are prerequisites, such as being an ATA member, so be sure to register with plenty of time!

Post by Susanne Kraetschmer
Translator English > German
ATA Member
Membership Coordinator – Oregon Society of Translators and Interpreters


OSTI goes to IMIA in Washington, DC

Helen Eby, Jazmin Manjarrez and Jeanette Poston will be going to the IMIA conference in the Washington, DC, area and have appointments with the staff of Sen. Wyden and Sen. Merkley and with Rep. Susanne Bonamici. Are you going too? Let us know, and look for their reports!

Our highlights:
• Interpreter qualifications should be required of all interpreters. See the Cultural and Linguistic Appropriate Services Standards.
• Working with professional medical interpreters (or professional court or school interpreters) actually saves money.

One of our members, Emily Safrin, prepared this handout! We consulted with NAJIT as we prepared it, because our colleague Esther Navarro-Hall, the NAJIT Chair, will be going with us. We are honored to be able to do joint advocacy with NAJIT, the National Association of Judiciary Interpreters and Translators.

Why use certified, qualified interpreters and other trained language professionals?

While they are in Washington, DC, there will be a public hearing in the Senate, in Salem, on the law that affects health care interpreters in Oregon. See the details here.

The hearing for HB2419 has been scheduled in the Senate Health Care Committee on Wednesday, April 22nd at 3:00 pm in Hearing Room A.