The requirements for earning official certification as a Spanish interpreter depend on the issuing body, with most requiring applicants to pass a written or oral evaluation that tests on comprehension and translation accuracy. Some bodies may also require proof of appropriate education in the language in order to earn certification, though some may forgo this, depending on test results, as of 2015.
The process for earning Spanish translator certification is different for each entity issuing the certificate, with one common body being the American Translators Association. This entity offers a certification for translators working from Spanish to English, as well as a separate designation for translating English to Spanish. To earn the certification, applicants must register for a written exam that includes translating two different written samples, either from or to Spanish. The first sample is mandatory and focuses on a general piece of writing that expresses an option or argument, while the other can be one of two technical samples with a specific purpose and formatting.
Other types of certification may include a similar test that can include an oral component or a timed aspect. The National Association for Judiciary Interpreters offers a certification test that focuses on practicing within a legal setting, such as a court appearance or legal mediation. It also works with different state legal departments to offer certification requirements that meet local laws and restrictions. This may include educational training from an accredited institute or proof of native ability in the language.