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Translators' Terms and Expressions Explained

We at Translators USA are always happy to answer our clients' questions. But we think it can't hurt to provide a quick overview and explanation of some of the most common translators' terms and expressions:

  • Back translation. Translation of a document back into the original language, usually by a translator who is unfamiliar with the original text/document. This is sometimes done to check for accuracy of translation but it isn't the best method because the original text and back translation are rarely exactly the same even if the translation is 100% accurate. Also, it is impossible to determine which of the translators made an error if there is any.
  • Computer Assisted Translation (CAT). A software that is used as an aid in translation. It features a database/memory of terms and expressions, grammar checkers, spell checkers, dictionaries and a variety of other useful tools that help translators in their work.
  • Certified translation. Translation done by a certified translator. It always includes a translator's statement in which they guarantee that the translation is accurate and that they are competent to translate for the language pair in question. Also included is information about the translator so that their competence can be verified.
  • Editing. Making sure that the translation conveys the exact same message as the original text and making improvements if necessary.
  • Gist. A rough draft/outline of translation.
  • Internationalization. Adjusting a text in a way to facilitate localization.
  • Literal translation. Word-for-word translation.
  • Localization. Adjusting translation to a particular country/culture.
  • Machine translation. Computer translation.
  • Metaphrase. Word-for-word translation.
  • Notarized translation. Translation that includes a notary's stamp which confirms authenticity of the signatures on the document. Please note that notarization doesn't confirm translation's accuracy. Therefore, U.S. governmental and a growing number of non-governmental agencies, institutions and organizations require certified translation of documents that aren't written in English language.
  • Native translator. A translator who is native speaker of the target language (the language in which document is to be translated).
  • Paraphrase. Sense-for-sense translation.
  • Proofreading. Checking and editing spelling, grammar, punctuation, capitalization, etc. Unlike editor, proofreader doesn't have to know both the source and target language.
  • Source text/document. The text/document that needs to be translated.
  • Sense-for-sense translation. Translation which focuses on the meaning and message the text is trying to convey. It is the exact opposite of word-for-word translation.
  • Target audience. Recipient(s) of the translated text/document.
  • Word-for-word translation. Converting text from one language into another word for word, with little or no regard to the meaning, proper sentence structure, grammar, etc.

Have Any Questions? You Can Always Ask Translators USA

We believe that we have covered all the most common terms and expressions you may come across when working with translators. But if you have any questions, you can always turn to Translators USA. We promise to answer any translation related questions you may have. You can contact us through our website or by phone (the number is 888-790-8872). We are available 365 days a year!

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Tuesday, 16 January 2018
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