Chartered Linguist

  • Chartered Institute of Linguists
United Kingdom
  • Other

Regulatory or professional bodies

Chartered body

Regulatory authority
Chartered Institute of Linguists

Thanet House
231-232 Strand

Email address
Phone number
+44 (0)20 7940 3100


Regulation summary

The language profession is broad. Language professionals include translators, interpreters, teachers, academics and those linguists using their languages in business, the professions and government roles.

Translators - The UK does not have a system of ‘sworn’ or ‘certified’ translators. Translations required for official purposes, such as birth, death and marriage certificates, legal documents, academic transcripts etc can, be ‘self-certified’ by practising translators, including those listed by the Chartered Institute of Linguists ( and the Institute of Translation and Interpreting translators ( and by Chartered Linguists who are registered as translators. Official guidelines commonly stipulate that a "certified translation" should be signed by a translator registered with an appropriate body such as CIOL or ITI. Chartered Linguists who are translators, have the designation Chartered Linguist - Translator.

Interpreters - Regulation and standards for public service interpreters vary from public service to public service and across the four nations of the UK. However, minimum standards for qualifications and experience are widely established and a National Register of Public Service Interpreters is in place ( To interpret to/from Welsh in the courts and tribunals in England and Wales, interpreters need to be on an approved panel of members. Chartered Linguists who are interpreters, have the designation Chartered Linguist - Interpreter.

Other Linguists - For teachers and academic staff, their roles are regulated by schools and universities within the regulatory frameworks in each UK nation. Business and the professions vary in the requirements and structures they have in place for linguists, but requirements are much more structured in the UK's government, diplomatic and security services and armed forces.

The Chartered Institute of Linguists supports and provides standards, professional recognition and language level frameworks in support of linguists in all of these domains, all of whom can achieve recognition as Chartered Linguists. All Chartered Linguists sign up to the CIOL Code of Conduct:

Regulation type


Reserved activities

None - restrictions apply to use of title only

Protected titles


More about regulated activities and titles

Qualifications and experience

New professionals

Routes to qualification

Translators and Interpreters would normally be expected to have degree level languages and commonly additional postgraduate qualifications (Master's, Certificate/Diploma in Translation, Diploma in Public Service Interpreting etc.) as well as several years of practical demonstrable experience, in order to accepted by UK professional bodies, public services and language service providers.

Professionals from outside the UK

Recognition for professionals outside the UK
All - there are routes to recognition for professionals from all countries
Summary of routes

The Chartered Institute of Linguists, ITI and NRPSI all recognise qualifications from other countries, subject to verification and confirmation of appropriate levels.


Title of relevant act or charter

Royal Charter of the Chartered Institute of Linguists

Title of relevant act or charter

Report of the Royal Commission on Criminal Justice

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