Rendering Scientific Texts in IT field: Terminological Difficulties Involved


Scientific text is instructive text. It includes numerous facts, ideas, concepts, and procedures. Scientific text is read to acquire information in a specific space of science.

Numerous amateur translators confuse technical and scientific translation of texts from/to a foreign language. Despite the overall similarity, scientific translation is considered to be quite possibly the most difficult type. This type of translation is usually used for the presentation of texts with the end goal of their further distribution in scientific journals or presented at scientific conferences. Effectively translate and construe all terminology present, observe the type of presentation and use the most exact and concise verbal constructions.


Among the critical problems of present-day translation, the improvement of such a field as the translation of scientific and technical texts takes a significant spot, regarding the speeding up scientific and technical process this type of translation is turning out to be increasingly more popular. The translation of a foreign language text is always associated with numerous difficulties that arise in the method of a translator. While translating, every one of the subtleties of a foreign language must be considered. The task of a mediator is to feel the style of the article, to pass on every one of the subtleties of the translated material without distorting the first source. One of the most convoluted types of translation is a scientific and technical translation since, for a sufficient understanding of the material in another language, linguistic as well as technical information is needed as well. Technical translation is the translation of texts of technical subjects, specifically, documents of different specialization, a wide range of reference literature, dictionaries, and product congruity certificates, working instructions, designing plans, scientific and technical articles, business contracts, and other business technical proposals.


Today, our focus is on the scientific text and the terminological problems associated with its translation. For the ease of readers, we have divided the article into the following categories:


  • Scientific translation in the field of IT and its techniques
  • Scientific and technical translation is not the same
  • Scientific translation and technical translation difficulties

Scientific translation and its techniques


The scientific translation is the translation of scientific texts, thus special information will be required. These texts require profound information on both the source and target languages, as well as a legitimate understanding of the subject. Scientific translators are regularly prepared linguists that specialize in fields such as medication, science, or chemistry. Sometimes they are scientists that have fostered a serious level of linguistic information, which they apply to the translation of texts in their field of expertise. A coordinated effort among linguists and subject specialists is truly normal in this case. In this article, we will clarify to you some of the best scientific translation techniques.


Clearness and conciseness


Clearness and concision are the really stylistic goals of scientific translation, which must pass on the specific meaning of the first text. Ambiguities and indistinct constructions are characteristics of the artistic texts and must not be found anyplace in scientific translation. This is the hardest task in scientific translation. Tracking down the right words can be a struggle sometimes and it can also make repetitiveness in the text, as synonyms of specific words can be fairly ambiguous and more suitable for abstract work. Keeping away from repetitions can sometimes be incredibly hard. This is the reason the translator must have a scientific foundation that allows her or him to play with the terminology without changing the meaning of the text.


Mistakes are vital


What is also truly normal among scientific translators is their capacity to address the small mistakes in the first text, as they will be the persons that will read the document most mindfully. Normal mistakes in scientific work include inconsistencies between numbers listed in tables, going with diagrams showing something else than they should, or tables alluded to by non-obvious symbols. In this case, the translator is advised to address such mistakes in brackets or footnotes.


Structure and meaning


If the syntactic and lexical features of the language difference, it is sometimes necessary to totally recast certain sentences. For instance, exceptionally arched languages such as Russian and German can string together a long chain of autonomous and ward clauses with numerous referents and antecedents and still keeping the entire meaning clear. Then again, this would be impossible in English for instance. In this case, the translator will have some work to do in terms of structure and meaning. This is one of those times when keeping the sense of a sentence unblemished can be a genuine test. Probably the best method to use in these cases is paraphrasing, namely a restatement of the meaning of a text or passage using different words.


Good reader 


To make a flawless scientific translation, the translator must be as educated as possible. Reading the latest books and scholastic journals helps you further develop your translation skills. Firstly, you become accustomed to the terminology and the style of this type of work. Secondly, you will be in the know regarding the latest scientific researches and discoveries, which helps you understand all the more easily the concepts that you are supposed to translate. You can even make a blog about scientific translation, scientific researches, and events. You can compose articles or take existing articles and afterward translate them in different languages that you know to acquire insight (make sure to ask permission to stay away from copyright infringements). This is a smart thought especially for beginners that need to specialize in scientific translation. Recall that the more you specialize in niches and sub-niches the easier it will be to research, compose and turn into a specialist.


Numbers and symbols are significant


In science, you will go over a ton of numbers, formulas, diagrams, and symbols, which must not be overlooked in the process of translation. The sense of an entire page or even part can be adjusted if the translator adds some unacceptable number or symbol. To stay away from this, he must understand very well the theme. Afterward, he must give a great deal of consideration to every one of the seemingly insignificant details. This requires persistence and logical skills, qualities that are indispensable for a scientific translator.


Proofreading is the key


Toward the finish of your translation, you should always proofread the texts yourself first and afterward ask a second translator to proofread your work as well. In a perfect world, ask different translators who have insight into the field. This way, every one of the mistakes that you didn’t notice will be remedied. In case some concepts from the first text are truly hazy to you, you can impart this to the creator (if possible) or with the customer. It is always better to ask for clarifications than to leave your work indistinct.


Understand the type of document


In science, you will go over different types of documents that require different degrees of custom. If you are translating scholarly work, you should track down an extremely raised style with complex phrases and less normal words. Then again, if we are discussing manuals or medication instructions, the translation must be less formal. This type of documents will be read by typical individuals or beginners in the field of science. This is the reason the language must be more accessible and easy to understand.


Scientific and technical translation is not the same


It should be emphasized that scientific and technical translations are distinguished by exactness, an unmistakable sequence of presentation, conciseness, by the intelligent construction of phrases, clearness, and objectivity. According to the perspective of the jargon, the primary element of the scientific and technical text lies in the outrageous saturation of the special terminology that is characteristic of this part of information. Each professional translator of scientific and technical literature should have within reach an entire arsenal of assistant tools. This includes scientific and technical, and reference literature of various topical focuses, and specialized, and linguistic dictionaries, which will assist the translator with staying away from inaccuracies and stylistic errors in the two languages. Technical translation involves not just translating words starting with one language then onto the next, yet additionally applying an entire set of information, both linguistic and exceptionally specialized. Notwithstanding linguistic instruction, certain information in the field of technology is also needed from specialists occupied with scientific and technical translation. For an appropriate technical translation, the mediator needs to understand the meaning of the text completely, if he does not understand it, the translator cannot dependably and accurately translate this text.


Scientific translation and technical translation difficulties


The primary difficulty in translating a scientific text is the difficulty of deciphering the terminology used. It is specifically obvious while describing inventions and technologies that have not yet become broadly used. In different words, a linguist, as well as knowing the immediate translation, must understand the overall context and be knowledgeable in the subject matter to which the translated text is committed.


Besides, consider linguistic constructions and the way of presentation embraced in the scholastic local area of a specific country. Any deviation from the acknowledged expressions catches the eye of a local speaker and causes a negative reaction. So, the translator must use words being specialized terms, yet additionally expressions used in the overall technical field, the so-called “semi-professional” language.


Technical text cannot be a free retelling, regardless of whether the meaning of the translated document is preserved. Such text should not contain any enthusiastic statements and subjective assessments. The primary features of translating scientific and technical texts are manifested in the compulsory information on all terms identifying with a specific technical field of translation by the translator. A specialist working with a scientific and technical text should understand the meaning of translated words, yet additionally consider every one of the nuances of their application. A translator working with a scientific and technical text needs to manage linguistics, yet additionally technical disciplines. While translating scientific and technical literature, one should always keep up with the style of the first document. Usually, all documents of a scientific and technical nature have principle features.