Theory /
Medical illustrations

SpecialTiesTM : Teamwork is central to MedicaMerkus

We cannot know everything, and this is something we are aware of. It may be self-explanatory, but those who practise a solitary occupation know all about the pitfalls of doing things single-handedly. To translate scientific texts clearly and completely requires different types of expertise. Targeted collaboration by a small number of well-chosen experts is what leads to the best and most efficient results. With MedicaMerkus, each element of the translation is looked after by the person most equipped for the job. This collaboration is integral to our method, SpecialTiesTM.

Transcreation - target oriented translation

Translations of technical language (Language for Specific Purposes) are often oriented towards the target culture. The source text is rephrased for a new readership. The information from the source text is clearly formulated – without any extra interpretation or addition - in the language that is used by Dutch professionals; the text will read as if it was written by a Dutch author.

 

Sometimes this is taken a step further. Concepts may need clarification or - depending on the client's wishes - names and situations may need to be adapted. In the advertising world this is referred to as transcreation, but in fact this type of adaptation may equally apply to other specialities. Transcreation is somewhere at the interface between translating and rewriting. It goes without saying that in this process, close collaboration with Subject Matter Experts is vital.

 

Translators and experts

Our translators are linguists first and foremost. In addition they all have specialties. It is important that translators are aware of where their familiarity of the subject matter ends; experts from the field will complement this knowledge.

 

Scientific translations

Good scientific translators should possess five main skills:

  • near-native mastery of and a finely tuned sense for all nuances of the source language;
  • sufficient scientific background in order to grasp complex texts in the source language;
  • a fair basic knowledge of the subject matter, which implies more than having completed a terminology course;
  • a talent for eloquently rephrasing complex information, with an eye for detail, while keeping sight of both the bigger picture (micro and macro level) and information beyond the text.
  • good communication: knowing when to alert other team members, when to research terminology or ask for clarification, or when to confer about translation issues.

It is vital that the translators can apply these five skills concurrently. This requires a unique combination of training, talent and experience.

 

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