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Critical Factors to Improve Quality of E-learning Translations

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Critical Factors to Improve Quality of E-learning Translations

Knowledge and information can be transferred successfully and effectively when they are communicated to the recipients in his/her own (native) language. A word may have different meanings in different languages. The actual meaning of a (critical) word can be understood only when it is translated to his/her native language.

The quality and accuracy of the translated material are important aspects to be borne in mind while translating technical content. Any wrong translation leads to waste of time and energy and results in,complete rework.

Let’s see how to tackle the quality issues of translations with respect to e-learning courses.

Translation and localization of e-learning content is essential for the success of any training program. Some of the critical factors to be kept in mind while improving the quality of e-learning translations are as given below:

The translator:

The entire process of translation actually begins with identifying the right translator. The selection of a good translator is not an easy task. You should have done an in-depth research on the availability of efficient translators before selecting one. You need to check out the experience levels of translators in this field. It’s always a wise idea to get some references. The translator should be a professional linguistic expert rather than just a native speaker.

Reference Material:

Reference materials are those that have a similar kind of flow, specific technical words, similar terminologies, and so on.While sending inputs for translation, it is advisable to send some relevant reference materials to the translator; for example, if you are sending an English document for translating into German, do provide some related German materials to the translator as reference. This will help bring out the best quality from the translators.

Specific terminologies:

There might be some specific terminologies that have to be only in English; if such terminologies are translated, the meaning could be totally different. The best way to handle this issue is to make a note of such words and let the translator know about your requirement.


The translated inputs must be proofread. The translator and the proofreader always have to be two different persons. Remember to give the translated inputs (material/s) for proofreading to a professional linguistic expert rather than just a native speaker. An added advantage would be when the proofreader is also a subject matter expert (SME). The more he has a grip on the subject, the more effective the outcome will be.

Same reviewer at all the stages of the project:

Proofreading of the translation document alone is not enough. The fully developed e-learning course should be reviewed before it goes live to the audience; but be sure to get the course reviewed by the same person who did the proofreading of the translated document. 

Translation memory (TM) tool:

Translation memory tools are used to store terms, phrases and sentences which have already been rendered into the target language. It’s facilitates the translator to minimize his effort and improve the quality in future translations for the same client.

I have noticed and implemented these factors while working on translation projects to improve the quality of training content translations. These factors really enhanced the quality. Do share your thoughts.

View eBook on How to Translate E-learning Courses Effectively


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