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Seven different types of translation services

The world of translation is wide and varied. There are different translation techniques, several theories about translation and several types of translation services, among which we can mention technical translation, legal translation and sworn or public translation.


The designation "technical translation" can be understood in two different ways. In its broadest sense, it refers to the translation of user manuals, instruction sheets, internal notes, medical translation, financial reports and administrative translation in general. All these documents have something in common: they are intended for a limited audience and have a useful life that, in general, is also limited.

In its most restricted sense, technical translation deals with "technical" documents, that is, texts on engineering, information technology, electronics, mechanics, industry, and so on.

It is essential that the technical translator have specialized knowledge in the specific field that is dealt with in the text.


The scientific community increasingly demands the service of scientific translation of specialized texts and documentation of scientific dissemination to professional translators who are concerned that the publication of the translation is a success.

Some of the specialty fields in the area of ​​scientific translation:

Science: biology, astronomy, agronomy, geology, physics, chemistry, biochemistry, medicine, pharmacology, mathematics, genetics, environment, etc.

Technology: robotics, computer science, engineering, nanotechnology, biotechnology, etc.

Humanities: psychology, anthropology, sociology, geography, history, art history, education, politics, etc.

Scientific institutions, universities, professionals and researchers are the institutions which mostly demand this kind of translations.

Specialized scientific translators must not only be graduated in translation and native speakers of the language to which they translate, but also they must have studies in the area of ​​specialty of the documents to be translated, to make sure they know perfection the terminology, style and purpose of the publications or articles to be translated.

Before the final delivery to the client, a thorough revision of the text translated by a reviewer of scientific texts is necessary in order to ensure the coherence and cohesion of the text and the correct use of the target language.


A financial translator must be familiar with financial terminology and economic jargon. Among financial document translation services, you can find the following: investment fund reports, annual accounts and results, economic balances, stock market analysis, international contracts, market studies, financial and economic reports, social responsibility reports, audit reports, insurance policies, bank documentation, financial articles, articles on economics, accounting documents, heritage management documentation, announcements to shareholders, economic justifications, grant documentation and business plans.


Legal translations deal with legal documents (rulings, citations of codes, etc.), administrative records (statutes and certificates of registration of a new company), technical documents (expert reports), judicial documentation, regulations and decrees, general conditions of purchase and sale, translation of contracts (employment contracts, license agreements, commercial contracts, association agreements, internal regulations, insurance policies, leases). The legal translator must have a solid legal and linguistic background.


This type of translation refers to the translation tasks that are carried out before a court of law. The judicial translator specializes in the translation of documents, such as trial records, judgments, reports of experts, statements, interrogation records, among others.


Sworn or public translator is the one whose signature authenticates the official translations. They are translations of documents that require legal validation. These translations are called "certified". In this case, they are expert translators who work in the courts, act as judicial translators or intervene with the category of judicial expert; they are also translators who carry out translations of certificates of civil status, marriage certificates, marriage contracts, divorces, deaths, testaments, etc.


Literary translation is perhaps the most demanding exercise for a translator. Although the translator will logically concentrate on transmitting the semantic content of the original text (as in any type of translation), it will also have to face many other difficulties. Let's quote some of them below:

  • The typical polysemous games of literary writings. For example, behind a word or a phrase, there are layers of meaning that the good writer wanted to transmit subtly and that a good translator should reflect.
  • The author's own style. The translator must convey the writer's unique way of putting his ideas into words.
  • The rhythm, the metric and the melody of the text, something particularly sensitive in poetry, but also present in prose. For the literary translator, the delicate task of achieving sonority in a text (assonances, alliterations, asyndeton, etc.) is a challenge.

These are the main seven types of translations. Whenever you need a translation done, you basically have two options hiring and independent translator or a translation agency. Although both have advantages and disadvantages, in general terms agencies are better because behind every translation there is a team. Independent translators may be better for a very specific type of translation.

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