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Interpreter Training Boost Program

An end-to-end interpreter training program creating job opportunities for Queensland participants

Register your interest for the Interpreter Training Boost Program on this page. You will receive a link to apply once applications are open.
The first Interpreter Training Boost Program course will begin from 16 May 2022 to 12 August 2022

Please note: 2M is currently not accepting phone calls regarding the Interpreter Training Boost Program. If you have a question, please refer to the FAQ on this page or email interpreterboost@2m.com.au

Creating opportunities for Queensland interpreters

The Queensland Multicultural Policy 'Our story, our future' makes a firm commitment that the Queensland Government will increase its efforts in implementing the Queensland Language Services Policy and improving access to interpreters and multilingual resources.

The Interpreter Training Boost (ITB) program has been established to provide new job opportunities for Queensland interpreters in priority languages and better communication outcomes for multicultural communities.

In collaboration with

What is the Interpreter Training Boost Program?

The Queensland Government is funding the ITB program from 2021-22 through to 2023-24.

The ITB program seeks to:

  • Provide scholarships to support at least 100 and up to 120 people (over 3 years) to undertake NAATI endorsed training to become certified to work as an Interpreter in priority languages.
  • Support the effective implementation of the Queensland Government Language Services Policy.
  • Contribute to implementing the principles of the Multicultural Queensland Charter, including to ensure equitable access to the services provided or funded by the Government for all people of Queensland, through an adequate supply in the interpreting workforce.

More on the program

The Interpreting Skills course, which is endorsed by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI) is structured as follows:

  • Blended delivery: online activities and live online practical classes (through Zoom or other online platform) according to a pre-set timetable- dates and times to be advised.
  • An intensive face to face session conducted in several QLD regional locations.
  • An intensive NAATI preparation and pre-testing support session (facilitated by NAATI).
  • 2 – 3 local industry work experience placements provided by 2M Language Services.
  • Online support with assessments or technology issues.

Entry requirements

  • Applicants must be fluent in English and any one of the following languages:
  • Amharic, Arabic, Cantonese, Chin languages, Dari, Farsi, Hazaragi, Hmong, Karen, Karenni, Kinyarwanda/Rwanda, Kirundi/ Nyarwandwa/Rundi, Kiswahili, Kurdish languages (including Kurdish Kurmanji), Oromo, Pashto, Rohingya, Sudanese Arabic, Swahili, Thai, Tigrinya/Tigrinian, and Vietnamese, or any other language from New and Emerging Communities which are in demand in Qld.
  • Applicants will undergo an online English Entry test. This test can be done from home, (where good internet is available) Support will be provided where needed.
  • Applicants who are reasonably fluent in English, but do not meet the English level requirement, will be offered a 20-week English Language Bridging Course option, before enrolling into the interpreting course.

Course cost

The scholarship will cover the cost of the course, except for a student contribution of $100 to be paid at enrolment.

If you have specific questions about the course, enquiries may only be made by email: interpreterboost@2m.com.au

2M is not currently accepting enquiries via phone.

Frequently Asked Questions

Entry requirements

What languages will the Interpreter Training Boost Program (ITB) cover?

The ITB will cover languages in-demand in Queensland, that is, languages identified by the QLD Government as urgently needing more interpreters, such as: 

Afar, Amharic, Anuak, Arabic, Assyrian, Blen, Burmese, Chin languages, Dari,  Dinka, Farsi, Hmong, Karen/Karenni, Kinyarwanda/Rwanda, Kirundi/ Nyarwandwa/Rundi, Kiswahili, Kurdish languages (including Kurdish Kurmanji), Kunama, Nepali, Oromo, Pashto, Rohingya, Samoan, Sango, Solomon Pijin, Somali, Sudanese Arabic, Swahili, Tamil, Thai, Tigre, Tigrinya/Tigrinian, Tok Pisin, Tongan, and Vietnamese, or any other language from New and Emerging Communities which are in demand in Qld.

Who is eligible to enrol in the ITB course?

Applicants must:  

  • speak one of the languages in-demand in QLD 
  • be fluent in English (see English proficiency requirements) 
  • reside in Queensland (including refugees and people seeking asylum) 
  • be compatible with visa conditions if subject to a visa (e.g. allowed to attend training and work)  

Please note: people on 500-590 Student visas are not eligible to do this course 

  • expect to remain in Queensland and work as an interpreter 
  • provide a financial contribution of $100 towards the ITB. 
Am I guaranteed admission into the program if I meet all the eligibility criteria?

Due to limited numbers and competing languages, we cannot guarantee you will be accepted into the ITB Program even if you qualify for all the eligibility criteria. Selection will be subject to the identified language demand and applicant pool. 

Application process

How do I apply?

To be invited to do the ITB, applicants must follow these steps: 

  1. Complete an Expression of Interest here:  ITB EOI 
  2. If you meet the basic criteria, 2M Language Services will respond to your expression of interest by sending you a link for you to complete an application form. 
  3. The application form will ask you for more detailed information and will ask you to upload evidence of visa/residency status, English proficiency score (if you have one) and other relevant documentation, e.g. education certificates (if they are relevant) 
  4. 2M will then provide this information to TAFE SA. 
Why is 2M Language Services involved?

2M Language Services is partnering with TAFE SA for this project. Being a QLD-based company, 2M is in charge of recruiting potential applicants, providing local support and providing a work experience/observership for all course participants who successfully complete the course.   

What happens after I submit all the information to 2M Language Services?

Once TAFE SA receives all your information the following will happen: 

  1. TAFE SA will process the information (allow 2 weeks at least).  
  2. TAFE SA will invite all applicants to attend an online information session or send them a recording of an information session. 
  3. If you meet all the entry criteria, and have submitted all the relevant documentation, TAFE SA will invite you to enrol in the course. 
  4. If you don’t have proof of an English proficiency level, TAFE SA will invite you to sit an online English proficiency test. (see Versant test) 
  5. If you pass the Versant English proficiency test (see required Versant scores), TAFE SA will invite you to enrol in the course 
  6. If you obtain a reasonable score, but do not meet the entry score, TAFE SA will invite you to do a 20-week English Bridging Course online before you enrol into the next ITB course offered.  
How will I enrol into the ITB program?

Once you have been invited to enrol, you will need to follow this process: 

  1. You will have to obtain a USI number (Unique Student Identifier). You will be given instructions on how to obtain this. 
  2. you will be invoiced for $100. This is the only fee you will have to pay. 
  3. Once you have paid your enrolment contribution, you will be given a student number and login details so that you are ready to start. 
  4. There will be support provided to help you with this process. 

You may be required to do some reading and activities online before starting the course. 

Course structure

What units will be taught in the ITB?

The ITB course will cover the following 4 Nationally accredited Interpreting units: 

  • PSPTIS001: Apply codes and standards to ethical practice 
  • PSPTIS003: Prepare to translate and interpret 
  • PSPTIS002: Build glossaries for translating and interpreting assignments 
  • PSPTIS042: Manage discourses in general settings (interpreting specific unit) 
What is the course structure?

The course is split into four main areas: 

  • Professional standards Weeks 1-3 
  • Prepare to interpret and Translate Weeks 4-6 
  • 1-week break 
  • Interpreting Practice Weeks 7-11 
  • Face to face assessment session in week 12 
  • Local placement/observership with 2M Language Services 
  • Face to face NAATI certification orientation  

Delivery and schedule

What are the course dates?

The first ITB course will start:  

16 May 2022 to 12 August 2022 

Professional Placement with 2M will start:  

15 August 2022 to 2 September 2022 

NAATI workshop:  

Early September 2022 

The second ITB course will be offered in March 2023 

How long is the course?

The course is 12 weeks (60 hours) delivered over 13 weeks (there is a break of 1 week during the course) 

How will the course be delivered?

The 12-week (60 hours) program will be delivered online with some face-to-face sessions and will be split as follows: 

  • 33 hours synchronous delivery (via Weekly 3-hour virtual live classroom with interactive practice (x 11 sessions)) 
  • 21 hours of asynchronous (online work in students own time), self-paced learning activities 
  • 4 hours (per week) has been made available for individual academic or tech support as needed by individual students 
  • 1 face to face session to complete assessments, namely the live interpreting role play assessment. 
  • Placement experience with 2M Language Services, over 2-3 weeks. 
  • 1 day face to face session to practice/orientation for the CPI test, delivered by NAATI 
Are there any assessments in the course and how many?

Students must demonstrate competence in all units through assessment. There are 7 assessments in the course. Assessments will include quizzes, activities and interpreting role-plays (both face to face and online). 

English proficiency

What are the English proficiency requirements?

Before you are accepted to do the ITB, you will have to:  

  • Either provide evidence of your English proficiency level or  
  • Sit for an online English proficiency test. 
How can I prove my English proficiency?

Evidence of English proficiency: 

  1. Completion of primary and secondary schooling or secondary and tertiary studies in an English-speaking country. Or 
  2. A recognised English proficiency test score. For English proficiency levels required by NAATI see: NAATI English Proficiency requirement 
    You will be required to upload evidence, (if you have it) regarding your English proficiency, when you are invited to the course. Or 
  3. Sit for an online English Entry test. (see the Versant English Placement test) 
What IELTS scores do I need to meet the course prerequisites?

Visit this link:

(refer to 'What evidence do I need to apply for certification'?) 

I think I am proficient in English, what proof do you recognise other than IETLS scores?

Visit this link:

(refer to 'What evidence do I need to apply for certification'?) 

What happens if I don’t have any evidence of English proficiency?

If you do not have the above evidence you will be required to sit for a free online English proficiency test (Versant English Placement test) before enrolling into the course. The test will take 1 hour. 

What is the Versant English Placement test?

The Versant English Placement Test is an English proficiency test which measures the listening, speaking, reading and writing proficiency of candidates whose native language is not English. For more information click here. 

For entry to the ITB, the only scores which will be looked at are the speaking and listening scores. The test is free for applicants. 

What is the score I need to obtain in the English proficiency test?

To be accepted directly into the ITB course you will need to obtain an average Versant score of 60 in speaking and listening. 

People who obtain a score of between 50 and 59 will be eligible to complete an English Bridging course (see English Bridging course)  

What if my English score is below requirements?

Applicants who do not meet the English proficiency requirement, but who nonetheless demonstrate a reasonable English level, will be offered a virtual classroom English bridging course: 'English for Interpreters'. They will then progress to the next available course. This bridging course will focus on improving listening and speaking skills within the context of community interpreting areas, i.e. Education, Health, Law, Social Security, Money Matters and Immigration. 

For example: Applicants who apply for the May 2022 course and do not have the required English proficiency, will do the English Bridging course first, and then join the next available course after completing their Bridging course. (See English Bridging Course) 

English Bridging course

How long is the English Bridging course?

The Bridging course will be offered online. The course duration is 16 hours x 20 weeks (One Semester). In 2022, the Bridging course will start on 25 July 2022. 

Before enrolling in the Bridging course, students will have to pay the $100 contribution fee. (This fee will also cover the ITB course) 

After successfully completing the English Bridging course, students will be accepted to enrol in the next available ITB course. 

What are the criteria to be accepted to the English Bridging course?

To be accepted to the English Bridging course, applicants will need to obtain a score of between 50 and 59 (in speaking and listening) in the Versant English Placement test. 

Fee-related

How much will the course cost?

The Queensland Government scholarship will cover the cost of the course, except for a student contribution of $100 to be paid at enrolment. 

I have a Health Care Card. How much would it be?

The Queensland Government scholarship will cover the cost of the course, except for a student contribution of $100 to be paid at enrolment. 

How much will the Versant test cost?

The Versant English Placement test is free of charge to applicants. 

How much will the Bridging English course cost?

The Bridging English course is covered by the Queensland Government scholarship. Applicants will have to pay $100 before enrolling into the bridging course. 

Applicants who have successfully completed the Bridging course will not have to pay $100 again before starting the ITB course. 

How much will it cost to get a NAATI credential?

The Queensland Government scholarship covers the cost of a NAATI Certified Provisional Interpreter test or a NAATI Recognised Practising Interpreter application.

Do I have to purchase textbooks or learning materials?

You don't need to. All study material is provided. 

General course enquiries

Is this a language specific course?

No, the ITB is not a language specific course. Students will be paired with other students who speak the same language, where possible, for language specific discussions and practical activities. Where possible, students will be given an opportunity to do a mock interpreting dialogue test and receive feedback on their performance in their Language other than English (LOTE) and their interpreting skills. 

Whilst every effort will be made to have at least 2 people of the same language, this cannot be guaranteed and there may be cases where a student is the only person speaking that language. In this case, they will still be able to participate in practical interpreting activities. 

I live outside Queensland. Can I study the ITB course?

No. This is course specifically funded for QLD students. If you are from another state you will need to complete the ISNC course: TAFE SA ISNC course 

Will the ITB course prepare me to sit a NAATI Certified Translator test?

No. In order to be eligible to sit for translation you will need to complete this course and then study an additional unit (Read and analyse special purpose English texts to be translated-PSPTIS064) which you can complete online, but which is not funded by this program. TAFE SA TSNC. You do not need to complete the whole TSNC course, just one unit which will cost approximately $512. 

If I successfully complete this course, am I certified as an interpreter?

No, you will need to sit the NAATI test or apply for recognition (in languages that are not tested) to become certified.  

What are the chances of getting certification after successfully completing this online course?

It depends on your bilingual competency, interpreting skills and contextual knowledge at the time when you sit for the test. The ITB course will include an intensive NAATI test preparation workshop delivered by NAATI. 

I am on my temporary visa. Can I still enrol into this course?

If your visa conditions allow you to study and work, you are most welcome. Applicants with Student 500-590 visas are the only ones not permitted to enrol. 

I am interested in the course due to immigration points.

Then this course is not for you. You should attempt the CCL (Credentialed Community Language) test instead.  Please see:  CCL testing 

Is this a suitable course for NAATI CCL (Credentialed Community Language) candidates?

No, if you wish to gain Migration points and sit the CCL (Credentialed Community Language) test, this course is neither required nor suitable for you.  
Please see: CCL Tests  

If I am away in the middle of the course for a few weeks, can I catch up?

No, if this is your situation you will need to apply for a later course. Attendance to the online and face to face sessions is compulsory. If you do not attend you will be marked as ‘withdrawn’ and will have to re-enrol again for the units you have not completed. 

Is this purely an online course or do I need to physically attend classes?

This is a blended course. You will have to attend virtual online sessions at least once a week. You can attend these sessions from anywhere providing you have reasonable internet connection. There will also be at least one face to face session in Queensland in a region near you. 

I submitted my application but wish to correct my information, how can I do that?

Please email the contact interpreterboost@2m.com.au 

How long should I wait until I get a response after submitting an Expression of Interest (EOI)?

2M Language Services will reply to you, acknowledging your expression of interest within a week of receiving it. 

Can I know the schedule before I consider the enrolment?

Yes, the virtual online session times will be published before enrolment. 

I missed the enrolment, when is the next enrolment date?

The ITB course will be offered again in March 2023, however you should apply as soon as possible so that you will know if you meet the requirements. 

Can I start the online course anytime I want?

No. Courses start at a particular time (see course dates).  

Can I choose which live online sessions to attend?

There will be a poll before the course starts where you can nominate a preferred time (from the times offered). Whilst every effort will be made to meet your preference, we cannot guarantee it. 

Can I complete at my own pace as long as I complete the courses within the 12-week deadline?

You must attend the synchronous sessions assigned to you (i.e. online sessions delivered in real-time) at the scheduled time (3 hours per week). You can study at your own pace in relation to the non-synchronous parts of the course as long as you keep up with the weekly schedule. The course is planned week by week and you will need to progress week by week and hand in your assessments when they are due.  

Can I take the online course while I am travelling overseas?

Yes, as long as you have a reliable internet connection to log into class and do your online work. However, you will need to be in the country near the end of the course to attend the face-to-face workshops. 

NAATI related

What is the difference between a Certified Provisional Interpreter and a Recognised Practising Interpreter?

The Certified Provisional Interpreter is the entry level of certification for interpreters. To become a Certified Provisional Interpreter, you will need to sit a test with NAATI.

NAATI is not able to test all languages, and does not offer testing in low demand languages and languages of new and emerging communities. Candidates who speak languages not currently tested by NAATI at the Certified Provisional Interpreter level will be eligible for apply for a Recognised Practising credential instead: NAATI Recognised Practising Interpreter.

After completing this online course with TAFE SA, will I be able to sit for a NAATI certification test without additional study?

Yes, you will be able to sit directly for the Certified Provisional Interpreter test after completing the ITB course. The training includes Ethics and Intercultural competencies, so you will not have to sit for NAATI Intercultural or Ethics competence screening tests. If your language is not tested, you will be eligible for apply for a Recognised Practising Interpreter credential: NAATI Recognised Practising Interpreter.

When will the next schedule of NAATI CPI exams be published?

NAATI will announce updates when they become available. To check the test date for your language, visit https://www.naati.com.au/ and go to ‘Find A Test Date’. 

After completion of the course, can I sit for the NAATI test?

Yes, if NAATI tests in your language and providing you have applied to NAATI after completing your course. 

How much will the NAATI test cost?

The Queensland Government scholarship covers the cost of a NAATI Certified Provisional Interpreter test or a NAATI Recognised Practising Interpreter application.

I have graduated from an interpreting and translating course in my LOTE country, can I sit for the NAATI test? What are the NAATI prerequisites?

You should contact NAATI to enquire or visit the link NAATI Certification Pathways 

I was an accredited interpreter but failed to revalidate. How do I obtain my certification?

You will need to contact NAATI, but in the majority of cases you will have to do the ITB and sit for a NAATI test. 

What is the pathway from Provisional Certified Interpreter to Certified Interpreter?

Visit the link:  NAATI Certification Pathways (scroll to 'Certified Interpreter') 

Career Pathways after completion of the course

After successfully completing the ITB course, you will be eligible to sit the NAATI Certified Provisional Interpreter test or apply for a NAATI Recognised Practising Interpreter credential.

For information on the Recognised Practising credentials, follow this link: NAATI Recognised Practising Interpreter.

The Certified Provisional Interpreter credential is the entry level of certification. There are areas in the interpreting and translating industry which would require higher certification levels.

I am a qualified translator in my country; can my qualification be recognised in Australia?

You should contact NAATI to enquire and check the requirements. 

I failed to re-validate my NAATI certificate and need to re-sit the NAATI test. Do you have a short course on ethics?

If you complete this course, you will be eligible to sit the relevant NAATI test. You should contact NAATI to check your requirements.