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Translation process

Translation process

Translation is a process that involves the transfer of a message from one language to another. This process includes a set of activities based on other disciplines related to language, writing, culture and linguistics.

Text linguistics is concerned with the way how parts of text are organized and related one to another to form a comprehensive meaning so it is useful to analyze the translation process and the meaning transfer from a source language to a target language.

As translation process is a multi-disciplinary process, it suggests three major activities run simultaneously:
  • Transfer of information from the source language to the target language.
  • Synch-analysis of text for the translation and research of subject-matter.
  • Continuous self-development and learning.
During the translation process, translators establish equivalences between a source text and a target language that is why this process can be expressed as interpreting the meaning of the source text and re-encoding this meaning in the target language.

First, to extract the meaning of a text the translator must recognize the section of text that will be processed as a cognitive unit that means "Translation units" which can be a word, a phrase or even one or more sentences. Although it can be seen as a simple procedure, it is a complex cognitive operation for that reason translators need in-depth knowledge to re-extract the meaning in the objective language.

Actually, many sources maintain that the translator's knowledge of the objective language is more important, and requires being deeper, than its knowledge of the source language. For this reason, many translators translate into a language of which they are native speakers so this process needs good knowledge about the grammar, syntax, idioms and semantics of the origin language.


Measuring translation quality
Translation problems
 Measuring translation quality
For measuring translation quality, you must use 2 criteria: fidelity and transparency to guarantee a translation without errors.
 Translation problems
During the translation process appears few particular translation problems such as problems of ambiguity and grammar.

Factors influencing the quality of translation

Translating is probably the most complex process so its quality depends on a number of factors, which are crucial to the process and these factors must be systematically considered. There are key factors in the three most important areas: linguistic, culture and personal conditions.
  • Linguistic factors
    Linguistic factors exert a direct and crucial influence so each of the linguistic factors such as phonological, lexical, syntactic and textual, can interfere with translation because interlingua differences is a main source of translation difficulties.

  • Cultural factors
    Translation works as a cultural bridge between two worlds and makes communication possible between different linguistic communities due to two languages are not similar to be considered as the same social reality so translation will always be influenced by two cultures.

  • Personal factors
    Professional and psychological conditions of translators have a direct influence on the translated text so they must have personal competences and personal attitudes.
Note: Using machines for the translation process is helpful but not recommended when you want accurate translations.