Changes to TIS National’s language list

19 January 2018

Following a review of our ‘Languages available through TIS National list’, we will be making changes to our language list including:

  • adding new available languages

  • making description changes and replacements to some language names.

These changes will progressively take effect across two phases between January and April 2018.

Changes to our language list ensure that TIS National identifies and describes available languages in a way that is consistent with the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI).  Where a language is not credentialed by NAATI, TIS National has sought Ethnologue for guidance in determining the most appropriate primary and/or alternate language names to adopt, including any additional references to assist with identifying a language.

What does this change mean for clients?

We encourage all clients to be familiar with the changes to our language list, and in particular, the amended language names listed below. Being familiar with the changes ahead of time will ensure that TIS National can efficiently allocate an interpreter at the time of request without any delays.

Our Service Delivery staff are across all language list changes and will be able to assist with any enquiries or specific needs.

Phase 1 - Changes to take effect on 31 January 2018

1.1          New available languages:

  • Afar

  • Sabaot. This new language entry is added to replace Kalentin.

  • Zotung Chin

Please note that interpreting services in Akan, Twi or Fante/Fanti languages can be requested under Akan (alt Twi/Fanti).

1.2          Languages with substantive description changes are as follows.

Current Language Name/Description

Amended Language Name/Description




South Azerbaijani (alt Azeri)


North Azerbaijani [Republic of Azerbaijan]


Bari (alt Kuku/Beri)

Chin Haka (Dialect of Chin)

Hakha Chin

Chin Zophei

Zyphe Chin (alt Zophei)


Fulfulde (alt Fulani)


Jingpho (alt Kachin)


Kayah (alt Karenni)

Khumi (Dialect of Chin)

Khumi Chin


Gikuyu (alt Kikuyu)

Kurdish (Gorani)

Gorani (alt Hawrami)

Kurdish (Faili)

Southern Kurdish (alt Feyli)

Kurdish (Badini)

Bahdini [Northern Kurdish]

Kurdish (Kurmanji)

Kurmanji [Northern Kurdish]

Kurdish (Sorani)

Sorani Kurdish (alt Kurdistani)

Liberian Pidgin

Liberian English



Malaysian/Malay/Cocos Malay

Malay (alt Melayu)


Konyanka Maninka

Mara (Dialect of Chin)

Mara Chin

Matu (Dialect of Chin)

Matu Chin

Myanmar Language

Myanmar Language (alt Burmese)



Pwo Karen (Dialect of Karen)

Pwo Eastern Karen


Shanghai [Dialect of Wu Chinese]


Sichuanese [Dialect of Mandarin]

Siym (Dialect of Chin)

Siyin Chin


Themne (alt Temne)

Tetum (Timorese)

Tetun (alt Tetum)


Akan (alt Twi/Fanti)


Uyghur (alt Uighur)

Zomi (Dialect of Chin)

Zo (alt Zomi)


Phase 2 - Changes to take effect on 1 April 2018

Effective 1 April 2018, TIS National will cease to offer languages services under the following language name/description, and will instead offer services by the relevant individual language names.

This will ensure that agencies and non-English speakers can receive the most appropriate service, and qualified interpreters where NAATI credentials are available for the particular language as described.

2 April 2018 Changes

Instead of Karen, please specify one of the following for service:

  • S’gaw Karen
  • Pwo Eastern Karen

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