Thread poster: adria mooney
I am a new translator and recently became a member of the ATA. I want to take the test but I have no idea what to expect. I don't want to waste my money on it if I am not prepared to pass it, but there is one scheduled in my area in one month from now. Does anyone have any advice as to how the test is structured, what tools are allowed, the topics of the translations, etc.? Thank you!
| | Ildiko Santana
Local time: 07:39
English to Hungarian
| a luxury item IMHO, but if you can afford it, go for it || Apr 16, 2004 |
The tests are not too difficult; you have quite a broad range to choose from, and the time allowed is reasonable.
Last time I tried for it there were 4 texts from 4 specialty fields (business, legal, technical, literary) and one generic - if memory serves me right.
No tools are allowed, only printed dictionaries. That can give you a hint of where they stand as far as testing your skills in the usage of all the goodies of our technically over-developed age. No electronic tool is allowed. Zip. Zero. You can bring a suitcase full of printed dictionaries, though. Also, tests are to be submitted in handwriting only. Yes, it does sound strange, in the year 2004!
On my first test they said I had failed but they had no sufficient reasoning, so I disputed and they sent my money back; my second test was supposedly been discussed by two graders (one said I passed, one said I failed), but the final word never came, so after my third reminder they just sent my money back. Both cases were dragged out forever. I haven't tried again since.
In case you decide to give it a shot - Good luck to you! 8^)
| || || |
| Yes, check the website || Apr 16, 2004 |
Note that the exam has changed recently, so there are fewer text passages to choose from now, but you also have to submit fewer. Look on the website for the details.
Also, note that ATA offers practice tests. The only problem there is that you wouldn't be able to take one in time for the upcoming exam.
| | GoodWords
Local time: 09:39
Spanish to English
| Follow the Source (Text) || Apr 17, 2004 |
I just took it two weeks ago and admit that I'm still thinking about the translations.
There are new eligibility requirements to sit for the exam. These are on the ATA website. Their purpose, I understand, it to ensure that candidates have a real chance to pass.
Not to intimidate you, I hear that there is about a 20 percent pass rate. The grading process is described in an article in the Chronicle, Oct. 2002, page 57-58 and 76.
The timing is crucial -- if you take it, I suggest taking every single second of the three hours. For "into English," the finest points of English grammar and usage are really tested.
Graders told me at the ATA Conference to "stick ***very*** close to the text!" I think that is in the advice to candidates on the website. The translations can't be too literal, of course, and can't be "too freely translated." That is all on the ATA website.
[Edited at 2004-04-17 02:36]
| ATA membership || May 10, 2004 |
I'm wondering, besides a step to eligibility to take their test, what's the main benefit of being a member of ATA? For a $100+ fee, it's got to be something worthwhile...
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