Back Translation and Reconciliation- What, How and Why

,The primary motto of back translation and reconciliation is to check the correctness of an article. Here we will discuss in detail what is back translation and reconciliation. We will see how they affect an article. Also, we will find out why are they necessary.

What is Back Translation?

It is the translation of a target document to its original or source language. This will help you determine the quality and accuracy of the translated text with respect to the original text. Back translation thus helps establish the same meaning between the original and translated text.

How to do Back Translation?

Let us take an example (Refer, Figure 1.). So, you have a set of documents to translate from French to Swedish. A translator has completed this translation. Now another translator will translate the translated version (Swedish) to the original  French version. There is one important point to note. The translator who is executing this back translation (Swedish to French) must be unaware of the original French document. Only then you will be able to establish the fidelity of the translated document.

Back Translation
Figure 1. Example of Back Translation 

Do not hope that you will get an exact word to word translation of the original document. What we need to keep here is the coherent meaning of the original document. Confusions, ambiguity if any can be detected in the back translation itself.

Why is Back Translation important?

Back Translations are extremely important when you are working on a sensitive content. It can also be a content that has risky information. For both, the meaning implemented from the translated document should be the same as that of the original one. This is because in many cases the translator misunderstands or misinterprets the meaning. Also, the translator can miss or overlook a complexity. As a result, the final translation might contain some meaning different from that of the original text. Keeping all these issues in mind back translation is necessary to keep the concept accurate. Hence, The translation must be culturally suitable for the target audience.

What is Translation Reconciliation?

What is the meaning of reconciliation? It means bringing back friendly relations. It also means to make someone or something compatible with other. So what is translation reconciliation? It is the minor changes or amendments done to the translated document to make it conceptually similar to that of the original document.

How to do reconciliation?

A subject matter expert team will conduct the job. They will find out the equivalence of meaning between the translated and the back-translated original document. Changes are done at this point in time to the translated document.

What are the results of back translation and reconciliation?

Both the above-discussed processes yield assured quality results. It should be true for documents carrying a significant message. The meaning delivered in a language should be similar to the original document. There can be instances where a translator misinterprets or overlooks a particular term. Therefore, even a minor mistake may totally change the meaning of a document. Hence, is the importance of back translation and reconciliation service.

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