Are You Bilingual?

Turn your language skills into an exciting new medical, legal or business career with a non-credit professional development certificate in Spanish-English Translation from the University of Arizona.

Why translation? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics

  • The need for translators is expected to grow 18% between 2016 and 2026, much faster than other jobs.
  • In 2018, the average salary for translators was over $55,000.

The Spanish-English Translation Certificate Program is intended for bilingual speakers with no formal training in translation who wish to improve or expand their knowledge and skills in written translation. The program is also an excellent way to prepare for the ATA certification exam.

Convenient online classes let you learn anywhere, any time, on your schedule.

Earn a Spanish-English Translation Certificate Online

The Spanish-English Translation Certificate Program is a 3-course fully online non-credit program designed to train entry-level translators to meet the needs of doctors' offices, hospitals, courts, law offices, schools and other settings.

Students who successfully complete all three courses—Medical, Legal, and Business Translation—will be awarded a University of Arizona Certificate of Completion. Students may also elect to take just one or two of the courses.

Upon completing the program, students will have:

  • Practiced translating medical, legal, and business content from English to Spanish and Spanish to English
  • Knowledge of English and Spanish health, legal and business terminology
  • Knowledge of how to make translation decisions on the basis of the translation requirements
  • Training in cultural competency
  • Preparation to work in health and legal settings

Applying to the Program

You will need to successfully complete an application before registering for the program. The application includes a background information form and a written entrance exam to test proficiency in English and Spanish. Applying is free. You will be notified of the results of your application within 2-3 weeks. Please allow 2 weeks before contacting us about the results of your application.

If you are accepted into the program, you will be notified when classes open for registration.



Each course is usually 16 weeks long (self paced, with weekly deadlines) and each course is offered 1-2 times per year. Courses start in January, May and September.

Price: $825 per course, 3 courses total

Discounts are available for University of Arizona employees and military, as well as early registration (1 month before course start). And a payment plan is available for students registering for Translation courses.


Medical Translation

The Medical Spanish-English Translation course provides guided practice in the successful completion of professional translation tasks involving texts in the medical domain, such as health care forms, health information texts, health/patient education, and legal documents in the healthcare setting.



Dates: January 11-May 17, 2021.

Legal Translation

Spanish-English Legal Translation provides guided practice in the successful completion of professional translation tasks involving texts common within the legal domain, such as legal forms and documents in the civil, commercial and criminal domain.




Dates: May 17-August 30, 2021.


Business Translation

Spanish-English Business Translation provides guided practice in the successful completion of professional translation tasks involving texts in the business/financial domain. This course will be useful to those interested in pursuing translation careers in marketing, retail, banking, finance and other business areas.



Dates: August 31, 2020 – December 20, 2020

For additional training opportunities in translation and interpretation, please visit the University of Arizona National Center for Interpretation.


Alexandra Guevara-Salcedo MD, MA, CMI, CT, was born and raised in Bogotá, Colombia. She graduated from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana as a medical doctor and surgeon in 2002. She holds an undergraduate and a graduate certificate degree in Spanish/Translating and Translation Studies, and a master’s degree in Spanish/Translating and Translation Studies from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She started interpreting in 2006 and in 2012 she became a Certified Medical Interpreter by the NBCMI. She is also an English-Spanish translator and holds the ATA certification since 2016.

Dr. Jeffrey W. Gabbitas has been directing the Translation and Interpretation Program at Pima Community College for 11 years and has taught Spanish for 26 years at the postsecondary level.  He received his BA and MA from BYU, and an MA and PhD from the University of Arizona in Second Language Acquisition and Teaching.  He has worked as a freelance translator in the medical and mining fields and a freelance interpreter in the financial field. He also served as the President of Arizona Translators and Interpreters (ATI) for two years.  Besides his passion for teaching, he likes to sing and break dance.

Ana M. Krause is a Spanish Translation instructor (specialized in legal and financial translation.) Ana has taught Spanish translation courses for more than 18 years, first in her native country of Costa Rica, at Universidad de Costa Rica and Universidad Nacional, and then in the United States, at the University of Chicago Graham School and the New York University School of Professional Studies. Ana holds a BA in English from Universidad de Costa Rica, a MA in Spanish Translation from Kent State University in Ohio, and a MA in Teaching Spanish Language and Culture from Universidad Pontificia de Salamanca in Salamanca, Spain. She has been a professional translator for more than 25 years and enjoys sharing her experience and passion for translation with her students.

Academic Program Director

Sonia Colina is Professor of Hispanic Linguistics in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Arizona, and is the former president of the American Translation and Interpreting Studies Association (ATISA). Sonia Colina is an expert in translation studies and translation pedagogy. Dr. Colina is the author of Fundamentals of Translation and of numerous articles in edited volumes and prestigious journals. She is on the editorial board of Translation and Interpreting Studies (TIS) and on the International Advisory Board of the Translator and Interpreter Trainer. In addition to her academic and scholarly work, Sonia Colina has created and presented a variety of workshops for professional translators, managers of translators, and teachers of translation.


Call us at 520-626-3343 or see the Translation Certificate Program FAQs.