Scientific Translator

Explain scientific knowledge in another language.
picture of Scientific Translator

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$23,000 – $86,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Scientific Translators do?

A Scientist in Hungary develops a radical, new procedure that turns mice bright pink when they’re infected with the flu. This test could transform the medical community, as it would be easy to spot and treat the sick. Without a Scientific Translator, however, this revolution might never occur, since only people who speak Hungarian would know about the pink trick.

A Scientific Translator has two basic tasks to accomplish: to convert the text from one language to another, and to keep the scientific information accurate and precise. Small errors could cause huge misunderstandings, so as a Scientific Translator, you must be quite careful with each piece you handle.

Publishers, Doctors, and Scientists contact you for translation help. Sometimes, you work with the person who wrote the study, and other times, you work with someone who just wants to know what the document says. When you receive a request, you submit a quote for the work. When it’s accepted, you begin your research.

First, you read through the entire document, making sure you understand the scientific concepts. Then, you begin to translate the piece into the other language. Some terms can’t be translated, as they have no equivalent in the other language, but you try to keep these instances to a minimum.

When your work is complete, you read through the entire document in the new language, making sure your translation retains the accuracy of the original piece. Then, you pass off the completed piece to your client and begin the next project.

Should I be a Scientific Translator?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Levelheaded: You hold your emotions in check, even in tough situations.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • Also known as: Technical and Scientific Translator

    How to become a Scientific Translator

    Most Scientific Translators have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:yo19cx&chl=no+college+%2812%25%29|certificate+%287%25%29|associate%27s+%2826%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2830%25%29|master%27s+%281%25%29|doctorate+%2824%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,12,30
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