Language Correction

In Scandinavia, the standard of spoken English is so high that many companies and organisations employ native Scandinavian translators, and it is also common to expect authors to produce English versions of their own texts. This is the case, even for professional scientists, who are expected to have perfect written English, as well as their science degrees!

Unfortunately, writing accurate and up-to-date English at the higher levels is a different matter from speaking English fluently. For a company which wants to present a professional face to the world, or an academic who wants a paper accepted for publication in English language journals, there is generally a need for language correction by a native speaker. The expectation may be that there will be just a few spelling mistakes or other minor details to clear up, but the reality is often that there are words on nearly every line which are ambiguous, unclear or incomprehensible, due to the author being forced to write at a language register much higher than that which s/he has ever been taught.

The translator’s challenge then is to make sense of the text by a combination of intelligent guesswork and ongoing dialogue with the original author, to ensure that the intended meanings are actually being represented.

With anything less than outstanding written English skills on the author’s side, it is usually quicker and cheaper in the long run to commission a translation from the foreign language in the first place.   However…. if your text is already written in English, and you are aware that it needs polishing, send me a representative sample of 100-500 words and I will tell you what is wrong with it – and give you an estimate for putting it right!