What can you expect from translation proofreading?

Translation proofreading

Following on from our blog about the different types of proofreading, this blog aims to look at translation proofreading in a little more detail. So, what is involved and what can you expect?

Well, what is involved may actually vary depending on how much information you supply your proofreader with. More specifically, whether you give them the source and target texts or just the target.

The proofreader you choose should be able to assess the text you send them for spelling errors, grammatical mistakes and incorrect word usage as well as to carry out a general sense check in either case. But having access to the source text will make a big difference to what you can expect.


  • Without the source

    Depending on the quality of the translation, you might be bombarded with questions. Without the source text for them to compare against, your chosen proofreader may need to ask about context and intended meaning. This will be particularly relevant for shorter texts where the wording can often make sense as it stands, but not necessarily in the intended context, or where there is ambiguity.

  • With the source

    If you supply the source text along with the target text, it gives your proofreader a lot more to go on. Not only will they be able to do the basic checks listed above, they can also check meaning without necessarily contacting you. With the source text it becomes easier to understand word selection. Not only that, but if the proofreader does identify something that needs changing, the scope of their viable options is clearer. It is a lot easier to avoid changing the meaning of a text through editing when you have the source to go on.

So, if possible, we’d recommend supplying your chosen proofreader with the source as well as the target text as this will potentially save you both time, prevent frustration and most importantly get you the best results.