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Translation Terminology

A Glossary of the most commonly used translation and interpretation terminology.

Translation, like any other profession, has its own jargon. Therefore, a should understand the terminology related to industry, in order to navigate a translation market.

You need to successfully communicate with either a freelance translator or a translation company; the provided terminology will help you to understand their professional language.This glossary includes the terms most commonly used in translation and interpretation.


A process of evaluating the competence of a translator, which is always conducted by a professional association, such as the European Union of Associations of Translation Companies (EUATC) or the American Translators Association (ATA).

*Accredited translator

A translator who has received accreditation from a professional association and became a member of that association. Accreditation can be obtained either by passing a translation exam or by proving extensive experience within the translation field.

*Ad hoc interpretation

Here the interpreter provides a spoken translation, helping the clients to overcome the language barrier during business meetings, phone conferences, and other social, political or economic meetings. This is also referred to as consecutive or face-to-face interpreting.


Adaptation is the process of modifying a text and making it more suitable for the target audience. The adaptation process can be performed by either translator or editor.

*Background information

In order to prepare an adequate translation of a source text, a translator must know all the available information relevant to that text.

*B language

A second language of a translator, in which he or she possesses efficiency close to a native speaker.

*Certified Translation

Certified translation must contain a certificate of accuracy. A statement attesting that the translation is an accurate and complete translation of the original.

*Computer-assisted translation (CAT)

A translation done with the help of computer software, which had been designed to support and facilitate the translation process.

*Court interpreter

An interpreter who provides verbal translation in court settings or other legal proceedings. In order to become court interpreter, a translator must complete a professional certification process.

*Desktop publishing (DTP)

The process of using a specific type of software that combines text and graphics. In translation, this term describes formatting a translated document so it matches the original text in style.

*Free translation= machine translation

A free translation is a translation performed by machine translation programs such as Babel Fish. The quality of machine translation is far from satisfactory. However, we can use them to get the gist of a translated text.


This is the process of adapting products or services to the global market. Frequently applied to software, websites and other publications.


Interpretation is a translation of spoken language. This can be either simultaneous (meaning at the same rate as speech) or consecutive (the speaker pauses and the interpreter translates a piece of speech at a time)

*Language combination or Language pair

Two languages that a translator or interpreter translates from and into. Example: Korean-English, English- Korean.

*Literal translation

A translation that closely adheres to the form of the source text. This type of translation is also known as a word-for-word translation.


Localization is a process of adapting a product or service to a particular culture and language.


This is a process of checking and editing translated text. The majority of translation companies have a quality control department, which is responsible for ensuring that the translated text has correct spelling, grammar and syntax.

*Source language

The original language of the document to be translated.

*Source text

The text to be translated.

*Target audience

Traditionally refers to the audience of interpretation services. However, now it is also used to describe the recipients of a translated text.

*Word count

A measure of the size of a text. Translation projects are commonly priced on a per-word basis.

KTranslation - Korean Translation Services:

Korean Translation
KTranslation provides translation services between English and Korean language pair.

English to Korean Business Translation
KTranslation helps individual and corporate clients to fulfill their Korean translation needs.

Certified Translation
Certified Korean to English & English to Korean translations ♦ Affidavit of translation accuracy ♦ Recognized by federal and local goverment.