NAATI accreditation - test dates
Thread poster: Natasha Ziada

Natasha Ziada  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 14:04
English to Dutch
+ ...
Mar 31

Is there anyone else who is or has been waiting to take a NAATI accreditation test? I have been on the waiting list to sit a test for the language pair English - Dutch since August last year. Every time I contact NAATI to enquire about possible dates, they tell me nothing has been booked in yet and that they will notify me when it has been.

I believe the system has changed, where previously tests were booked in regularly, for smaller language combinations they now wait for a certain number of test takers before booking in a date. As my language pair is quite small in the Australian market, I could potentially be waiting forever. And as it's near impossible to get translation jobs in Australia without the accreditation it's a really frustrating situation to be in. It's not so much the waiting I mind, as I understand that not all languages have the same priority and there might be longer waiting periods for some, it's the total lack of clarity and transparency around the process with no timelines in place at all. Plus the fact that NAATI pretty much holds the monopoly on the Australian translation market, yet does not allow newcomers in certain language combinations easy access to that market.

Has anyone else dealt with this? Is there anything I can do to speed things up?

I would appreciate your input.


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DJHartmann  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2014)
Thai to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
Australia is a very small market Mar 31

Translation is a global industry, run primarily online.

I've become very successful in my 'small' language combo without succumbing to NAATI pressure. Their fees and charges are outrageous, and as far as I've heard, unless you are testing for interpreting, all you'll be sent are birth certificates and marriage registrations. Not much fun!

I would possibly do NAATI if settling back in Australia long-term, to stick some other certificate on the wall next to my Masters. Work-wise, I haven't needed it (I once thought we 'needed it' ha!).

My tip is to not worry about it so much, get work from overseas, one day they might give you a chance to be tested and you can make the decision whether you think they deserve your $700+ or not!


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Natasha Ziada  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 14:04
English to Dutch
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks DJ Mar 31

I appreciate your input and words of encouragement. I agree with the translation market being bigger than Australia only and I do manage to find clients elsewhere, but for me in particular obtaining accreditation would be useful, as I don't have any formal translation qualifications. Plus, from what I've heard, Australian agencies seem to pay well (and I wouldn't mind doing some standardised documents in between that basically all use the same template!)

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Vanda Nissen  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 14:04
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
My two cents:) Mar 31

Hi Natasha,

I agree with DJ, the Australian market is quite small, so one of the options is to look for clients in Europe. Besides, is English Dutch pairs rates in Australia and Europe are very alike.

NAATI's system has changed a lot recently and still changing. Even accredited practitioners have been affected by those changes. Once you gain your accreditation, you will need to go through the revalidation process every three years, and this process is quite comprehensive.

You may consider becoming a member of AUSIT and making your voice heard. In August, Brisbane will host FIT2017 - an excellent opportunity to raise your concerns with NAATI officials and meet agencies.


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Natasha Ziada  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 14:04
English to Dutch
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
AUSIT Mar 31

Hi Vanda, thanks for your 2 cents For some reason I thought NAATI accreditation was a prerequisite for obtaining membership of AUSIT - upon further research this doesn't appear to be the case. I will look into it. Do you find membership worthwhile (of both NAATI and AUSIT)?

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Vanda Nissen  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 14:04
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
Visibility Mar 31

I would say, both AUSIT and NAATI are about your visibility as a translator. They are marketing instruments - some people use them more, some people - less.

I am accredited as English into Russian and hold Recognition as a Ukrainian into English translator. There are more than 200 Russian NAATI accredited translators in Australia (80 listed in the NAATI directory only, a lot of people are not listed). There is not enough work to provide all of them with work, so it is all about visibility: conferences, networking events etc.

What I am trying to say:), there is no guarantee you will start getting work from the Australian agencies after gaining the accreditation, so I would suggest you start marketing yourself already now.


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Natasha Ziada  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 14:04
English to Dutch
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Marketing Apr 2

Thanks again Vanda. In regards to marketing, with overseas clients and agencies I have started working on building a solid client base. With the Australian market, I feel there's just not much use approaching agencies without accreditation. Then again, I have never actually tried, so might as well give it a shot

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