Types Of Translation

Types Of Translation

So, you are looking to start a career as a translator are you? That’s great, but before anything else, the first thing you are going to have to understand however is the different types of translations there are to be made.

Did you know that there are all different types of translations that can be done in the world today, making translators a necessary commodity in any field or niche?

If you want to be a successful translator, then you need to understand the difference between the different translation types. Although it is not difficult, still you need to have some knowledge about it.

If you are looking for in-depth information on types of translation, you can try out Pedro Dudi’s Translation 101. You can download it at Translation101.net

What Is Translation?

Did you know, being a translator is not the same as being an interpreter? It’s fairly easy to mix these two jobs up, but the difference between them is distinct, and easy to understand. Simply put, a translator works in text, and an interpreter works in vocal conversation.

As an aspiring translator, your job will consist of taking documents and writing them back out in another language. The job is not as easy as plugging the text into Google docs and clicking a button to change the language.

To be a good translator, you must have a keen understanding of the language and how it should be written. An interpreter needs to know how to speak a language in a slang and informal fashion, whereas a translation is all about formality.

Now it is time for you to go over the various types of translation, and how they can be different from one another.

Financial Translation

This type of translation deals with finance documents. From banking information, business plans, to news about the stock exchange. be prepared to understand the terms used in the financial world if you are a financial translator. This is a form of technical translation (see below).

Technical Translation

In the simplest sense possible, technical translation is what some people might call “writing about boring stuff”. It is the process of writing translations for user manuals, instructions leaflets, internal notes, medical translation, and financial reports.

What makes this a unique sort of translation job is that these types of documents tend to be on the more formal end of the spectrum, and they tend to have a limited shelf life. If you have ever bought a new television set or electronic device that acquired assembly, then surely you have seen the instruction manually written in three or four different languages.

That is the work you need to do as a technical translator.

Scientific Translation

Scientific translation is a sub form of technical translation. As the name implies, translation revolves around documents related to the field of science. We’re talking about congress booklets, thesis papers, presentations, and study reports.

Doing this kind of work requires a firm grasp on the terminology involved with the sciences, much in the same way that technical translations involve knowledge of technical jargon.

Legal Translation

Legal translation covers a lot of different ground as a field. This type of work could have you translating jury summons, corporate statutes, registrations and certificates, and a wide range of professional reports for agencies and the like. This is one of the largest fields in the translation business, so always consider this as an option for you. If you are doing this type of translation, and especially if you are a certified translator, consider looking for some form of liability insurance to cover your “rear end”.

Judicial Translation

One of the many sub forms of legal translation, judicial translation focuses on the courtroom. In this field, you would be translating the minutes of an interrogation session, minutes of proceedings, legal judgments, and certain experts’ opinions.

Juridical Translation

Another sub form of legal translation, juridical translation focuses on documentation that surrounds laws both federal and local. Think here about documents such as insurance policies, jailing sentences, bail assurances, partnership agreements and the like.

This is one of the tougher translation jobs to get, as you need to be both an expert in linguistics, and have experience in the legal field as well. Don’t let this discourage you however, as all types of careers require experience, and as the years pass you by, you will be more confident in your abilities.

Medical Translation

Just like any other form of translation, this also requires some specialization and knowledge. Here you translate the documents, without distorting the medical terms.

However, in order to be qualified for medical translation, you need to have knowledge of the medical terms, and if possible a certificate in medical transcription would be of great help. These courses are plentiful, generally not too expensive, and you can take them online. You can also try starting off as a novice, and gain experience while you work.

Certified Translation

The last of the sub form legal translating positions, certified translators most often work on documents that require proof of certification in courtroom and other legal settings. This could include scenarios involving divorce settlements, immigration papers, and civil status documents.

Literary Translation

The last type of translation on this list, and perhaps the most well-known, literary translation is, as you would expect, the translation of literature such as novels, poems, and short stories. This is perhaps the most difficult of all other types of translations, as there are a number of problems that arise from literary works, including wordplay, satire, mannerisms, and other distinct barriers of language.

If you are an avid reader, then look into this field, but be wary of the difficulties.


While there are different types of translations to be made in the world, this is by no means a bad thing. Translation is a widespread skill that you can apply to any faction of society that includes writing (which is just about all of them).

Hopefully, with this new found knowledge, you will be able to make a clear decision as to the field of translation that you would like to pursue.

If you would like more information, be sure to check out the in depth Translation 101 at Translation101.net now!

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