Covid-19 update: The previously scheduled start date of March 25, 2020 was cancelled. Once social distancing restrictions permit, this program is expected to return.

Who is the program for?

MCIS has developed a unique language-independent training program with funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation.

Currently, the only formal translator education programs available in Canada are in French and Spanish. For other languages, training is only available overseas, or not at all for rare languages and dialects. As a result, there is a significant shortage of professionally trained translators in many languages spoken in Canada. This is affecting access to critical information and services for limited/non-English speaking persons in key areas such as health care, emergency services, legal access, education, social services and so on, in a country characterized by its diversity.

MCIS’ Translator Training Program aims to offer equal access to education, in order to help reduce the shortage of trained translators in the multitude of languages spoken in Canada. The program provides linguistically diverse Canadians with the means to develop skills and knowledge to become community translators, with focuses on topics present in Community Translation (legal, medical, social). The advanced portion of the training program seeks to bridge the gap between academic learning in university programs and real-world tools and technology being used in the industry today, and focuses in areas such as multimedia, literary, and creative translation.

This program is offered both in-class and online.


The online version of the Translator Training Program is composed of 40 modules. While enrolled, students will have ready access to all course content, training materials and resources online.

Students will be placed into groups called cohorts that will start the program on set dates.

The OTTP Online Translator Training Program is comprised of 40 modules (2-3 hours per module). Students will follow a pre-defined schedule and complete the modules on their own computers within 18 weeks of the start date.

Students should expect to spend between 10-20 hours per week working on the course and coursework. Please note that this is an intensive program that will require students to complete work on time.

Professional Development: Approved for 120 Professional Development Credits (PDUs) with the Ontario Council on Community Interpreting (OCCI)

Topics covered in the curriculum:

  • Fundamentals of translation
  • Developing translation competence
  • Community translation
  • Introduction to specialized translation
  • Building and managing a translation business

Applicants must have:

  • An excellent command of the English language (both writing and reading skills)*
  • Good writing skills in working languages
  • Computer literacy (ability to type in English and the other working language(s))**
  • A working laptop with MS Word and Adobe Acrobat Reader to bring and use in the class (Chromebooks or tablets may not be used)
  • Research skills (needed for modules on terminology, reference material and stylistic guides)
  • Cultural competence (both cultures of translation)
  • Post-secondary (university or college) degree/certificate

*This is mandatory as the course will be delivered in English.

** Students must already possess basic computer knowledge. This course is not intended to teach basic skills. If students do not possess this – MCIS may refer the student to skills development courses.

(Search this database for in-class/onsite program start dates.)