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Toolkit Part 11: Guidelines for Translation

This page links to the download for Toolkit Part 11, Understanding and using the "Toolkit Guidelines for Culturally Appropriate Translation".  This part covers the following topics:

  • Introduction
    • Background on the Toolkit
    • About this part of the Toolkit
  • Common problems with the quality of translated materials
  • How can you safeguard the quality of translations?
  • Toolkit Guidelines for Culturally Appropriate Translation
  • Does it make sense to translate the material?
  • To get a good translation, start with a good text in English.
  • Choose a method of translation.
    • One approach:  Create it separately in each language.
    • Another approach:  One-way translation (single or multiple)
    • Another approach:  Two-way or "back" translation
  • Plan how you will format the translated document.
    • Single language formatting is one option.
    • Dual language formatting is the other option.
    • Advantages and disadvantages of dual language formatting
    • General tips for formatting translated documents
  • Use skilled professionals to do the translation.
    • How can you find translators who meet these requirements?
    • Should you use an agency or a freelance translator?
  • Give the translator clear instructions and a full briefing.
  • Translate for meaning (rather than word for word), in a culturally sensitive way.
    • Good translation requires cultural and linguistic adaptation.
    • Choosing which word or phrase to use in the translated text
    • Translating words and concepts that are unfamiliar to readers of the target language
  • Review the translated text for accuracy, cultural suitability, and ease of use.
    • Tips for reviewing the translation
    • Using the feedback from reviewers
  • Use an editor to review and polish the translation.
  • Careful proofreading is the final step.

To view Toolkit Part 11, click the download listed below.  You are also allowed to save or print a copy of this download from your personal computer.