Translators Associations North America: ATIA

Integrity in Alberta

Translation Associations North America: ATIAThe Association of Translators and Interpreters of Alberta ( or Association des traducteurs et interprètes de l’Alberta), ATIA, is the only court interpreters, conference interpreters and certified translators association in the province of Alberta, Canada. It was founded in 1979 and is the only member representing Alberta at the Canadian Translators, Terminologists and Interpreters Council (CTTIC). Because of this, it is also affiliated with the International Translators Federation (FIT).

ATIA is an interpreters and translators association whose members spread throughout the whole province of Alberta. Members of this organisation based in Edmonton may be freelancers, independent translators, employees of interpretation and translation agencies, government of corporate in-house translators. All members of this translation association are “bound by a Code of Ethics ensuring the quality of their work and guaranteeing confidentiality”.

The main goal of ATIA is to fulfil the needs of language service’s clients “by ensuring, through its standards and certification procedures, that their interests are protected, and by facilitating their contacts with professional translators and interpreters”. Members of this translators association are represented by an Executive Council, which is elected to serve them at the Annual General Meeting.

As far as professional conduct is concerned, all members of ATIA must fully recognise that the work they undertake on an individual basis “will ultimately reflect upon the integrity of the association”. They must do their best to support the organisation and other translation associations that represent their profession. It is expected of them to share their knowledge with their colleagues “in a spirit of mutual assistance”. This includes the very important role that more experienced professionals play in assisting and encouraging beginners.

ATIA expects its members to refrain from any unfair competition with colleagues, for example, engaging in comparative advertising or wilfully undercutting the fees charged by another member for the same mandate. Furthermore, members should not abuse the good faith of other members and must never take credit for work performed by anyone else.

It is a rule of all members of this translators association not to claim skills or qualifications they do not possess. They should only accept work in fields in which they are competent. Before providing their services, all professionals should take into account the limitations of their skills, knowledge and the means they have at their disposal. In specific terms, they must not undertake work for which they are not sufficiently prepared, unless they seek the necessary assistance and information.

It is expected that members of ATIA translate into their mother tongue only or, alternately, into their language of habitual use, as the case may be, unless special circumstances apply, such as particular knowledge of the terminology of a specialised field, in which case they shall endeavour to have their work revised by a member who has been certified in the relevant language combination.

ATIA values the constant updating with new techniques, specialised terminology of areas of members choice and current usage.

Members of this Canadian translation association conduct their professional activities “with integrity, fully respecting the rights and interests of their client or employer and the confidentiality of all information obtained“. Only in cases when their clients provide them with permission will professionals be released from this obligation. Also, clients must be kept informed on any errors committed in the execution of a member’s mandate that is liable to be detrimental to the client. These have the right the consult – at all times – a colleague, a member of another translators association or any other competent person.

There are several categories of membership at ATIA. Founding members are those who successfully completed the programme in translation offered under the auspices of the Translation Service of Alberta Culture in 1978-79, or any instructor who taught one of the language courses in the programme, provided he / she has been a member in good standing since that time. A Founding Member in good standing is deemed to be a Certified Member.

Certified Members are, in the case of translators, persons who have satisfied the examination requirements as set out by the Canadian Translators, Terminologists and Interpreters Council (CTTIC), or is a Certified Member in good standing of another translation association recognised by the CTTIC. As far as conference interpreters are concerned, rules are similar but acknowledgement may include different organisations. The applicant must also prove that he has worked at least 200 days as a conference interpreter, or in the case of conference interpretation between languages other than French and English, at least 50 days.

As for Associate Members, they are those who will be future professionals, who require further experience and training. An Associate Member has no voting privileges and may not stand for office in the association. In order to become a Certified Member of this translators association, An associate member must undertake the CTTIC certification examination. In case he / she was admitted before the 3rd October 1998, he / she had to pass the examination within five years of being admitted to the association. If an Associate Member was admitted after that date, he / she must pass the examination within six years of being admitted. Failing this, he will be struck from the roll unless the Council decides otherwise.

Finally, Honorary Members may be nominated by two or more certified members for that status. Such nomination is aimed at recognising the outstanding contribution to translation of the nominated individual.

Keep in mind that Canada’s two main languages are English (58.8 % of the population) and French (23.2 %). In Alberta, there are around 3 million inhabitants, the majority of which speak English. Around the world, there are around 328 million native English speakers (the actual figures are estimated to be much higher), whereas French native speakers are about 125 millions.

Lexis is happy to receive and publish news on events and other initiatives by your translators association. Please send us the press releases by your translation association to the email address Lexis – Connections with meaning

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