Can a French Interpreter Work as a Haitian Creole Interpreter?
Should Someone Looking for a Haitian Creole Interpreter Certification Get a French One Instead?
Language in history is not stagnant – many common languages that we speak today have come from, or been influenced by, another language at some point in time. When looking into interpreter training programs, it is therefore important to choose a certification course for your specific native language – not one that is similar.
For example, people looking to get a Haitian Creole interpreter certification might consider a French interpreter training course, as Haitian Creole incorporates a lot of the French language; however, this could prove extremely difficult for the student if they aren’t familiar with French, and potentially dangerous if he or she obtained a French interpreter job.
Haitian Creole and French
The Haitian Creole language was formed in the French colony of San Domingue, in the 17th and 18th centuries. It developed on the sugar plantations, by African slaves. The language incorporates many French influences in terms of vocabulary, but is also heavily influenced by African languages and grammatical structures. The spelling and grammar of Haitian Creole varies rather drastically from the standard French language.
Haitian Creole isn’t the only language with roots or influence from France; take Canadian French and standard French as another example – two even more similar languages that still retain many differences. While someone who speaks standard French may assume they could understand the language of French Canadian perfectly because of their shared roots, they will likely encounter issues. Therefore, it is important to always do your research when looking into interpreter certification programs, and ensuring you always choose a course in your native language – not just one that is very similar.
How to Research Haitian Creole Interpreter Certification Course
Researching a Haitian Creole interpreter certification course, or any language interpreter training course, requires a fair amount of time and dedication. Unless you are fluent in multiple languages, you must look for courses that cater to your specific language abilities – don’t assume that because you know a language that stems from another, or is very similar to another, that you are qualified to interpret in that language. This is essential as an interpreter due to the severity of the complications that can arise if you don’t understand your client, or if your client does not understand you.
These types of situations are easy to imagine when one considers a medical interpreter – one mistranslation and the patient’s life could be on the line. Legal interpreters will face similar issues as their clients are often seeking justice, and need all their facts and the facts of the case presented clearly. Even business interpreters can run in to problems, especially if they are working on a negotiation with international investors – if your investors speak a different dialect or language, albeit similar to the one you interpret, they could potentially not understand you or even get offended by what you say.
So whether you’re looking for a Haitian Creole interpreter certification course, or one for any other language, make sure you are sufficient in the language the course is being offered in – and don’t skip corners just for the certification. In the end, it will save you a lot of time, money and potential headaches down the road.
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