Be Flexible When Planning and Writing Your Research Report

In order to ensure your report meets the objectives that you established from the beginning, it’s important that you adhere to a set of guidelines as you move from planning to writing the formal report.

Remain Flexible

While you are searching and locating sources useful in supporting your research objectives, new findings will lead you in different directions depending on what you find at each step in your investigation process.  Because you will be actively writing, updating and changing your report while investigating new potential sources of information, you will want guidelines to keep you focused on answering your research objective.  The following list is a set of questions that one French translator has compiled to help those working on research projects.  Throughout your project, you should look back and review these questions:

  1. What type of information do I need and why do I need it?
  2. How should I phrase my questions to ensure that right information is collected?
  3. How should I structure my presentation to communicate my process of inquiry and my findings?

As a certified translation worker, you should review these questions regularly during your project and you should be aware that your answers to them may change over time.  At the offset, the first question is answered by the research purpose.  The second question will be phrased in each of your research questions and serve as the blueprint for your report.  The third question will be answered by your outline.  During the research process, a respected Seattle German translation worker suggests that you need allow enough flexibility to allow modifications to your plan in case of unanticipated discoveries.

The following are some examples:

  1. Just as you think your research report is nearly finished, you discover new variables that had not been identified in your statement of purpose.  As a result, you now need to adjust your statement of research purpose to include the new variables.
  2. You decide that certain issues that hadn’t been included in you should now be included or learn that critical information on one of research questions is unavailable. As a result, your research plan needs to be reworked.
  3. While composing your initial draft, you determine that the organization is very poor and needs to be restructured. As a result, you come up with a new outline.

Keep in mind that your finished report will be the summation of many decisions and revisions.  Always remain flexible and be prepared to revise and reshuffle as often as necessary.

How Translators Are Used To Conduct Research

As a language translator, you might be tasked with working on research project for a client that involves applying analytical skills to problems, proposals, and planning for a client. A surgeon, for instance, studies medical records and prescriptions taken by patients in order to determine the safest treatment and procedures to use when sedating, recommending healing times.  Prior to buying investment property, a smart investor will analyze traffic patterns, accessibility, property taxes, growth trends and other market conditions. A fire inspector will build an arson case on the analysis and logical reconstruction of events, interviews of potential neighbors and background information of the owners in a case.

A French translation Services company in Washington D.C., was once asked to document and translate a number of job procedures on an offshore oil platform for a team of investors from Mexico.  The project involved numerous interviews with technicians, supervisors and other specialists to precisely determine and document the correct steps involved in each of the jobs.  In other examples, the same translation company was asked to identify product adoption rates of rechargeable battery operated scooters in China.  Other translators have been asked to listen to audio recordings of acts of violence and based on personal judgment identify what events actually transpired and who committed the actual attack.   In more busness oriented examples, translators with The Marketing Analysts Translation Services Company have been hired to assess the feasibility of a proposal for company expansion or investment in various regions of the world. The list is endless, but the process is basically the same: (l) making a plan, (2) finding the facts, (3) interpreting the findings, and (4) drawing conclusions and making recommendations.

An Introduction To Formal Reports For Translators

Formal reports are reports that answer tough questions or solve challenging problems.  Investigation is essential to thinking, and because of this any document you have ever written and translated required some sort of analysis. Consider a simple summary that you may have written, it required a thorough investigation of a larger file to identify important points.  An e-mail marketing message might demand a comprehensive review of the intended recipient’s list and the optimal message and offer to use. With a formal report, your analysis might influence a major decision. For instance, a Portuguese translator in Miami received the following assignment from a large Non-Government Agency (NGO): Identify and locate information from African trade journals concerning the expansion of new agricultural techniques being successfully implemented in Angola.

Obviously, the completion of this job is going to require much more than a simple trip to the branch of your local library.  Because large funding initiatives and strategies will be based on your results, you will need to locate, translate and interpret all data essential in making the optimal recommendations. This is where a translator must apply the research activity discussed in and where you face your greatest reporting challenge.

In the next several blog posts, we will be examining the role of conducting research by translation professionals.

Limit The Length Of Sentences For Better Comprehension

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Over the past three decades, a great amount of research has been conducted by Washington D.C. translation services workers, interpreters and professors of linguistics to uncover strategies that make writing more readable and oral presentations more understandable.  Among the topics researched most heavily are those that involve clarity and conciseness.  The major implications drawn from the research typically suggested that sentences should be short and writers should use words that are familiar to the target audience.   By following this advice, the content will be more easily understood by non-native speakers and it will also be easier to translate into foreign languages.  In the next few blog entries, St. Louis Spanish translation workers will focus on these recommendations that include limiting the length of sentences, making use of terminology that is widely known, cutting out unnecessary terms and incorporating action into sentences.

Restricting the Length of Sentences

Recently French translators in Baltimore discussed translation and evaluating sentence efficiency.  In their presentation they indicated that while translating they always try to evaluate sentences to determine if they can convey the same thought in the least amount of words possible.  Consider these two sentences:

  1. The power cord connected to the new computer isn’t long enough to reach the outlet.
  2. The new computer’s power cord is too short to reach the outlet.

Both sentences are short.  The first sentence contains 16 words and the second sentence contains 13 words. However, the second sentence conveys the same meaning with 3 fewer words.  Only 13 words are needed to communicate the information to the reader.

Examine the following sentence:

The magazine writers reported that the 2 door Honda Accord sedan provided a smooth ride.

This sentence contains 15 words, but can the same idea be conveyed using fewer words?

  • The 2-door Honda Accord offered a smooth ride to the magazine writers.
  • The 2-door Accord offered a smooth ride

While there are probably better ways to rewrite the original sentence, the two alternatives contain fewer words and provided the same information.  The alternatives were far better in communicating the thought.

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So when is a sentence too long?

Unfortunately, there is no simple answer to this question.  The answer really depends on how well the sentence is composed, received and understood by the intended audience.

Translating Numbers, Seasons, Holidays and Places

Holidays and Events

Many new Miami translation workers frequently make the mistake of not indicating the date when discussing a particular holiday.  As a result, there can be confusion when discussing holidays that are observed in various countries, share a common name, but take part on different dates.  A few common examples include Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day, Labor Day and Memorial Day.

Numbers in Thousands

Similar to the use of a decimal, large numbers are also written differently across the world.  For example, a comma is used in the United States to separate the hundreds from the thousands place.  However, other countries either make use of a period or a comma.

Geographic Place Names

In nearly all cases, experienced Washington D.C. French translation workers should avoid the use of names that refer to places.  While most Americans know that “Sin City” refers to Las Vegas and that “The Big Apple” refers to New York, relatively few know that “Athens of the North” refers to Edinburgh or that “The Granite City” refers to Aberdeen, Scotland.  In the same respect, many people in the Middle East don’t know that Miami is often called “The Magic City” or “Little Cuba”.

Metric and Imperial Units of Measure

For the most part, the two main measurement systems include the Imperial and the Metric.  The United States is the last major economy that still makes wide us of the Imperial system.  For most translations, it is a wise idea to convert all measurements to the system used in the country of the target audience.  If the translation will be used in multiple countries where both systems are used, it is advisable to provide both measurements.  For instance, a manufacturer of hardware components might state the dimension of a screw as 5-inches (12.7 centimeters).

Seasons

When it is summer in the North America, it is winter in South America.  Because the seasons differ in timing based on location, the months of the year should always be used in place of the name of a season.

Why Businesses Must Produce Globally Neutral Brochures, Manuals, Letters And Other Communications

When companies enter into foreign markets they discover that they must produce communications that can be understood or easily translated into a variety of languages.  Even companies that only operate domestically are under pressure to adopt ethnically, culturally, and linguistically to satisfy the needs of their workforce.  The president of The Marketing Analysts Translations Company agrees and indicates that this is particularly true when you factor in that nearly 10 million U.S. immigrants were granted citizenship during the 1900’s.  In 2008, more than one million people were naturalized as U.S. citizens.  Of these immigrants, close to 20-percent were offered priority worker visas because they had exceptional abilities and skills strongly demanded by U.S. corporations.  A large portion of these immigrants had limited English speaking and writing skills and came from cultural backgrounds significantly different than those of the United States.

Similar migration patterns of people from Africa, India, Central America and Eastern Europe and the growth of global corporations have created similar situations in other parts of the world.  As a business executive, you will encounter situations when you must communicate with people of diverse ethnic, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds too.  According to one Portuguese to English translator, a good translation agency will assist executives in developing presentations, manuals, brochures and other forms of communication that are globally oriented.  Globally oriented communications signify works that are culturally neutral.  This means that your documents will be prepared in a local language, and be understood by members of other cultures who have some grasp of the local language but have a different first language.  By developing neutral communication works, these documents can be readily translated into a variety of other languages.

While the task of producing neutral communications may sound simple to some, it is actually quite a challenging process for those who only know one language and one culture.  The process of creating neutral communication can also be a great challenge to those who are bilingual but have adopted strong linguistic and cultural practices.

How Translators Should Use The Power Of Persuasion By Including Facts And Data

As content creators, writers and translators who are trying to include persuasion in our works, it’s important to keep in mind that the people who will be reading the material can be classified into groups.  They include those who have been persuaded, those who can be persuaded and those who cannot be persuaded.  Therefore, Washington D.C. Legal Translation providers suggest that we should be cautious about how we use persuasion to sway the group that can be persuaded and be delicate in how we address those who are already persuaded.  You will never be able to change the mindset of those who cannot be persuaded.  As far as those who are already persuaded, it might be enough to demonstrate why you are a reliable source of information and then make your emotional appeal.  For those who can be persuaded, you need to present proof and data to support your position.

In a commercial sales presentation, one sales representative might state a negative claim against the competition to persuade the key decision makers that the product they offer is inferior.  A Portuguese Miami translator  translator suggests that the back and forth debate might sound something like this:

• Brand X’s product lacks the software scalability to address your needs in six months.

• Brand Y’s product has one of the worst support teams in the world.

• Brand X’s product has a tendency to crash because it is new and hasn’t been adequately field tested.

On the other hand, a positive argument is one that reinforces the person making the claim with encouraging statements.

• The product line we represent has been field tested in thousands of installations.

• With the software that operates on our computers, you can expect efficiency gains of 20%.

It’s likely that there won’t be many members in your audience who will feel that you are trying to deceive them by offering incorrect data. More likely than not, Seattle French translation workers suggest that the facts won’t concern the audience as much as matters they relate to value, importance, and the possible fallout from making a bad decision. The largest part of your presentation should be devoted to clarifying the implications and meanings of the material you presented. In other words, as your audience takes in all of the information that you presented, they will want to know what it all means and why it is important to them.

Online Translation Forums For Professional Translators

The communication environment becomes truly dynamic in forums, blogs and online chat sessions.  Forums are similar to blogs that you may need to be invited by a professional organization to joining. Many professional translation organizations have established such electronic forums on their own website or on sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter where members can discuss current issues and events. These types of discussion forums have seen a surge in subscribers and participants over the past decade.  In most cases, you subscribe by sending a message to the forum managers and indicate why you are interested in joining and participating in their forum.  As a member of a forum, you might discuss a problem, collaborate on projects, and share and write different news releases. Some large forums might even hold online meetings and training events.

There are a number of applications that can be purchased and are available free that allow organizations to create environments for discussions using chat sessions, instant messaging and other technologies.  Online discussions give everyone equal opportunity to talk and read each other’s comments.  In the field of French translation alone, there are a wide range of certified translation forums that provide professionals a writing environment for discussions on topics related to translation and interpretation.

Suggestions for effective e-mail messages apply to the messages you send to mailing lists and chat sessions, although chat sessions frequently have their own rules. Sometimes, it is a good idea to monitor the participation and postings for a week prior to engaging in conversation because you only want to post relevant comments. In many instances, new members will make post questions that have been answered numerous times.  Frequently, one or more members will become agitated and insist that you read the forum’s rules before commenting.  Generally, the rules contain a link to indexed material on commonly answered questions.

Translation Technology–What You Must Know As A Professional Translator

Hiring authorities place a high value on candidate that can communicate well and speak on or more languages. From a simple review of the postings on Careerbuilder.com or Monster.com, you will see that one of the most frequently listed requirements for any job is the ability to communicate. The purpose of many of the posts on this blog is to help new certified translators develop successful communication skills that allow them to better present specific information to a specific audience for a specific purpose.

In this post, we will briefly review how modern technology provides new opportunities for Washington D.C. translation workers to communicate. While you can probably think of many examples, here are a few ways that we believe technology can help translators.

•    Technology makes it possible for new types of collaboration that allows teams to complete projects more quickly and provide higher quality translations.
•    Cloud servers allow files to be shared, updated and revised by authorized individuals from anywhere in the world.
•    Inexpensive archiving and storage systems allow access to huge volumes of searchable media.

While new advancements in computer technology create countless opportunities to develop effective, well-researched and translated documents, you still need to be able to ensure confidentiality of sensitive information, write well-thought-out translations and provide accurate, complete deliverable.

In upcoming writings, the authors of this blog will discuss how technology should be incorporated into our professional translation and communication activities. Translation companies no longer ask whether translators are well versed in translation productivity and management applications such as Trados. In the same way, translators are expected to advanced skills in using Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, Word and a number of other office suite applications. In addition, some translation agencies have proprietary software applications that they will train you to use. You must be flexible and adapt to the changes technology brings to your workplace setting.

How Translators Can Use Brainstorming For Conducting Research And Strategic Planning

Sometimes as a translation worker, you will be asked by a client to conduct a simple research project to gain information about product applications, technical details or even consumer usage behavior in a foreign country. One of the first steps in finding and collecting the information needed to accomplish the objectives of the project is to survey the information your client already has on hand. If the topic is one that you or your client is experienced with, it’s possible that you will already have enough knowledge to complete the task. Often times, it is more likely that the topic will be unfamiliar to you or that your own knowledge is inadequate to address the objective without more information.

Creative Thinking and Brainstorming

Before jumping head first into your assignment, The Marketing Analysts Translations Company recommends that you document what you already understand about the area of interest. Take advantage of a technique called creative thinking or brainstorming. In brainstorming, you organize thoughts and evaluate them in an manner that becomes increasingly organized and targeted. At first, make a note of anything that enters your mind that is related to the topic. The emphasis should be placed on being as creative as possible. After doing so, you can evaluate your thoughts for practicality, usefulness, efficiency and other criteria. Many Washington D.C. French to English translators will either write their thoughts down in a notebook, type them out on their computers, or even make use of special brainstorming software applications. By making use of the brainstorming approach, can begin to pinpoint and evaluate the information that is available to you and the data that you will need to collect.

As an undergraduate student or in your professional work experience, you make have already taken part in some sort of brainstorming planning. Some ways that you may have used it could have included coming up with a strategy to translate a large book, developing a plan to coordinate the activities of team of translators to meet an urgent deadline, or even plan a large simultaneous interpreting event for one of your clients. Although brainstorming and creative thinking techniques were created for use by small-teams, anyone can apply the techniques of brainstorming on their own to make a topic easier to understand. To help your brainstorming activities and, afterwards, to assess the outcome and effectiveness, make use of the information you produced regarding the requirements and perceptions of your client. The following questions are a few that could come up in your brainstorming session.