EPSO

Languages

An excellent command of European languages will open many doors at the EU institutions. Depending on where your competencies lie, you can apply for a post as a translator, interpreter, proofreader, or lawyer-linguist. Although most posts are obtained through an open competition process, it is possible in some instances to apply for a fixed-term contract, a freelance post or a traineeship.

Job Description

The EU institutions' interpreting service is the largest in the world – its conference interpreters ensure that the discussions held at meetings are correctly interpreted into an official language of the EU, using either simultaneous or consecutive interpreting. EU interpreters work in a stimulating, multi-cultural environment, and must be able to communicate effectively, grasp varied and often complex issues, react and adapt swiftly to changing circumstances, work under pressure, independently and as part of a team.

 

Key Qualifications

You must have perfect command of one EU language and a thorough command of at least 2 others and an appropriate qualification in conference interpreting or a degree plus one year's professional experience as a conference interpreter (Grade AD 5), or several years’ relevant experience, to join us at a more senior level (Grade AD 7).

The selection procedure for conference interpreters focuses on your interpreting skills, as well as the core competencies required of all EU officials. Interpreting skills are assessed on the basis of simultaneous and consecutive interpreting exercises in your chosen languages. Find out more about the selection procedure on our How to apply page. You may also find our sample tests useful.

Interpreter selections are launched each year usually in the summer (June/July). Check our job opportunities to see the which languages we are looking for this year.

 

Freelance interpreters may also be employed to work alongside staff interpreters in meetings served by the interpreting services of the European institutions. There is no nationality requirement for freelance interpreters and all languages may be considered.

To become a freelance interpreter accredited with the European Commission, the European Parliament and the European Court of Justice, please see Interpreting for Europe.

 

You can also see our Quick Guide to EU traineeships for further information on interpreter traineeships.

Job description

EU lawyer-linguists ensure that all new legislation has the same meaning in every European language. The job requires capable lawyers with outstanding linguistic abilities, who are experienced in drafting or translating, checking or revising legal texts. Lawyer-linguists must be able to discern precisely what EU legislation is intended to convey, and faithfully reflect that intention in their own native language.

Key Qualifications

You must have a perfect command of one EU language and a thorough command of at least 2 others and a law degree. Previous experience of translating legal texts and additional languages are an asset.

The selection procedure for lawyer linguists focuses on your legal and language knowledge and translation skills as well as the core competencies required of all EU officials. Find out more about the selection procedure. You may also find our sample tests useful.

Lawyer linguist selections can be launched at any time throughout the year, although publication tends to be either in spring or autumn. Check on our homepage for an announcement about the languages we are looking for in the current year. 

See also the website of the Court of Justice for temporary contract opportunities.

Job description

Working under supervision, proofreaders in the publications office are expected to proofread manuscripts in their native language. This involves preparing manuscripts in terms of style and typography, proofreading printers' proofs, delivering the "passed for press" order, participating in the design of publications, and helping to organise and monitor the production processes involved in publication.

Proofreaders (language editors) in the Court of Justice assist in preparing texts to be published in the Court Reports. This involves linguistic checking and editing of documents for publication, checking texts against the originals, which are usually in French, checking for compliance with style conventions and rules, preparing issues of the Court Reports for printing and finalising texts in typographical terms.

Key Qualifications

You must have perfect command of one EU language and a thorough command of a second. For the Court of Justice, you must have at least a passive knowledge of French plus either post-secondary education and a couple of years' relevant professional experience depending on the competition, or secondary education and several years' professional experience depending on the competition.

The selection procedure focuses on your proofreading skills, assessed on the basis of practical proofreading tests, as well as the core competencies required of all EU Officials.

Find out more about the selection procedure. You may also find our sample tests useful.

Proofreader/language editor selections can be launched at any time throughout the year, although publication tends to be either in spring or autumn. Check on our homepage for an announcement about the languages we are looking for in the current year.

Job description

Translators in the various EU institutions and bodies, working in a challenging, multi-cultural environment, help 500 million Europeans, in different EU countries understand EU policies. Working to some strict deadlines, the job may involve translating a broad range of political, legal, financial, scientific and technical texts and providing wide-ranging linguistic advice to colleagues.

Key Qualifications

You must have perfect command of one EU language and a thorough command of at least 2 others, and a degree in any discipline. The selection procedure for translators will focus on your language knowledge and skills in translating, as well as the core competencies required of all EU officials. Find out more about the selection procedure. You may also find our sample tests useful.

Translator selections are launched each year usually in the summer (June/July). Check our homepage for an announcement about the languages we are looking for in the current year.

See our Quick Guide to EU traineeships for further information on translator traineeships.

Translators may also be employed as contract staff for a fixed term.