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Back-translation Method

Back-translation Method

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Published by Luh Windiari
Sometimes, we find some difficulties in translation process and get confused whether the translation is fine, whether it is too literal or too dynamic. It could be sort of a challenge for translators to maintain the message in the source language text while at the same time presenting it in a natural expression in the target language text. “In order to see whether an equivalent is natural or directional, the simplest test is back­translation. This means taking the translation and rendering it back into the source language, then comparing the two source-language versions” (Pym, 2010: 30).
Sometimes, we find some difficulties in translation process and get confused whether the translation is fine, whether it is too literal or too dynamic. It could be sort of a challenge for translators to maintain the message in the source language text while at the same time presenting it in a natural expression in the target language text. “In order to see whether an equivalent is natural or directional, the simplest test is back­translation. This means taking the translation and rendering it back into the source language, then comparing the two source-language versions” (Pym, 2010: 30).

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Published by: Luh Windiari on Jul 29, 2013
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Back-translation Method

Category: Short Article Sometimes, we find some difficulties in translation process and get confused whether the translation is fine, whether it is too literal or too dynamic. It could be sort of a challenge for translators to maintain the message in the source language text while at the same time presenting it in a natural expression in the target language text. “In order to see whether an equivalent is natural or directional, the simplest test is back-translation. This means taking the translation and rendering it back into the source language, then comparing the two sourcelanguage versions” (Pym, 2010: 30). In practice, back-translation method can be used to further refine the translation result especially when translating a long phrase or when feeling unsure about the translation. Errors in translation or changes in meaning may occur. Therefore, we can apply this method to ensure that there is no error made and to further polish and refine the translation result. In translation studies, this method can also be applied to investigate the equivalence between the source language text (SLT) and the target language text (TLT). Below is the image illustrating the back-translation process quoted from Yu et al (2003).

In addition to the above brief description about back-translation method, especially for academic research in translation studies, if one is investigating the naturalness, accuracy or equivalence in translation, he/she should consider that the back translator should be someone who is equally good in both SL and TL as Wild et al (2005) mention that back translators are “the people who develop the translations from the target language back to the source language. They should be professional translators, native speakers of the language of the source measure, and fluent in the target language. They should have no prior knowledge of the measure, and should not see the source or any other language version before or during back translation.” Now, let us take one simple example of how this process goes.

They are: SL version melakukan tujuan Back-translated version berbuat maksud : melakukan sesuatu dengan tujuan untuk mendapat pujian : berbuat sesuatu dengan maksud mendapat pujian In Indonesian. Step 3: Do back translation TLT (Target Language Text): doing something with the purpose to receive praise Back-translated version : melakukan sesuatu dengan tujuan untuk mendapat pujian Step 4: Compare the SL version with the back-translated version Back-translated version SL version The comparison result: From the comparison. In conclusion. Short article by Luh Windiari References: . it can be said that the translation is accurate. both melakukan and berbuat have the same meaning and they can be said as synonymous and so do tujuan and maksud.SL version (Indonesian): berbuat sesuatu dengan maksud mendapat pujian Step 1: Translate the SL version into TL version: SLT (Source Language Text): berbuat sesuatu dengan maksud mendapat pujian TLT (Target Language Text): doing something with the purpose to receive praise Step 2: Review the grammatical style and comprehensibility Note: There is no grammatical error found. Therefore. back-translation method can be a useful method both for practitioners and researchers. there are two words in back-translated version and in SL version.

Anthony. Jean Woo. New York: Routledge Wild et al. Translation of the chronic heart failure questionnaire. Applied Nursing Research. Principles of Good Practice for the Translation and Cultural Adaptation Process for Patient-Reported Outcomes (PRO) Measures: Report of the ISPOR Task Force for Translation and Cultural Adaptation.F Yu. Volume 16. 2003. November 2003. 2005. Pages 278-283 Pym. Diana T. Exploring Translation Theories. Value in Health.F Lee. Issue 4. Volume 8 Number 2 Pages 94-104 .Doris S. 2010.

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