Editing: first stage of the translation quality control

Editing involves evaluating whether the translation complies with the specifications of the translation project. This is done by meticulously comparing the translation and its source text (ST) and applying a series of criteria so that any potential corrections or improvements can be scrupulously completed before the translation is considered suitable.

The editor is in charge of ensuring the following:

  • The specific requirements of the translation project are known (recipient, register, terminology preferences of the client, etc.).
  • The reference material (glossaries, previous translations, websites, images, translation memory databases, etc.) is respected.
  • The concepts of the ST are closely mirrored in the translation using correct and natural language.
  • Suitable terminology and phrasing for the specialised language in question are used.
  • The terminology is consistent (especially for technical translations) throughout the translation.
  • The translation maintains the creativity of the author and the register of the ST.
  • The translated terms are as indicated in the reference material, if any.
  • The style of the translation is clear, concise and flowing.
  • The translation does not have any unnecessary additions or omissions.
  • The translation includes translations of any hidden text.
  • The translation conveys the ST in its entirety, with no missing chapters, sections, summaries, paragraphs, images, tables, text boxes, footers, etc.
  • The translation accurately reproduces all the figures of the ST.
  • The decimal points adapt to the spelling rules of the target language.
  • The abbreviations and acronyms are as used in the target country.
  • The units of measurement, dates, telephone numbers, addresses, currencies, etc., are correctly written and their format is localized for the target language.
  • The names of geographical features are those used in the target country.
  • Punctuation marks are correctly applied, in accordance with the rules of the target language.
  • The translation maintains the format of the ST (font type and size, line spacing, bold, italics, small capitals, underlining, bullet points, paragraph breaks, indenting, alignment, margins, etc.).
  • The translation does not have double spaces or any other typing errors.
  • The page headers and footers correctly reflect the information of the ST. It will not be assumed that reviewing or correcting one will automatically mean that they are all correct, since there may be mistakes if there are different sections.
  • The spell check of the word processors is run to avoid potential typing errors.
  • The automatic fields are updated right before the editing is completed. If the fields are not automatic, the data shall be checked manually. The titles, subtitles and sections of the various chapters shall be the same as those in the table in contents.
  • The translation is re-read as if it were a source text. If a reference to the ST is unnecessary to understand any portion of the text, the communication of the translation shall be considered effective and the editing shall be validated.