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Sense-For-Sense Translation

In order to provide our clients the highest quality translation services, we at Translators USA carefully follow the developments in translation theory, methods and practices, and combine them with the long-established norms. And one of such norms is sense-for-sense translation (also known as paraphrase) the goal of which is to ensure that the translated text conveys the exact same message as the source text.

Sense-For-Sense Translation Vs Word-For-Word Translation


Sense-for-sense translation is the exact opposite to word-for-word or literal translation. Unlike the latter which literally translates word by word, sense-for-sense translation looks at the bigger picture. Instead on words, a translator focuses on the entire phrase, sentence or sometimes multiple sentences with an aim to determine the context and above all, the message the source text is seeking to convey. It is sometimes possible to render the message of the source text in a way that it is easily understandable and appealing to the target audience using word-for-word approach but this is the exception rather than the rule.

There are several reasons why word-for-word translation is highly unlikely to convey the same meaning as the source text. If nothing else, the structure of the sentences needs to be modified because different languages tend to use words in a slightly different order. Also, the majority of words have several different meanings and if not paying attention to the context in which they are used, the translation may not make any sense. Even more problematic are idioms which are almost always mistranslated when word-for-word method is used. With the exception of perhaps a few shorter sentences, literal translation never produces accurate translation and much less conveys the same message as the source text.

Perfect Understanding of the Source Language and Subject

In order to ensure that the translated text communicates the same message as the source text, it is crucial for the translator to understand what the author of the original text is trying to say. Obviously, this requires a perfect understanding of the source language but it often also requires in-depth knowledge of the subject of the source text. This is due to the fact that many fields and industries use specialized terminology understandable only to native speakers within a particular field or industry. What is more, sometimes even perfect understanding of the source language and subject aren't enough to provide 100% accurate and meaningful translation. For example, it is crucial for the translator to know who is the target audience/culture in order to be able to adjust the style and word choice accordingly, what is the goal of translation (e.g. encourage the readers to buy a product) and often also a broader context of the source text.

Quality, Fast and Affordable Translation Services

Translators USA clients can always count on quality, fast and affordable translation services. Our database of translators consists of over 9,000 language professionals who can translate in over 150 languages and all fields and industries. They are available for both business and personal documents translations, 7 days a week.

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Friday, 19 January 2018
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