Translators’ Wall of Fame: Prof. Jerzy Koch
30 June, 2014

An internationally-renowned Dutch philologist, an excellent literary scholar and an acclaimed literary translator, Prof. Jerzy Koch is an intriguing individual with a sharp eye for detail and a soft spot for the written word. With these two qualities he has successfully unlocked the enthralling world of Dutch, Flemish and Afrikaans literature for the Polish-speaking readership. During his long-standing academic career, he’s published eight books and over 100 papers on the subject. A linguist of many trades, a globetrotter and a keen photographer, he’s the first foreigner to have become a full member of the South African Academy for Science and...

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Resources on Rare Diseases for Translators
28 February, 2014

Today, we celebrate Rare Disease Day to raise awareness among the general public and decision-makers about rare diseases and the challenges faced by people affected by these conditions. There are nearly 7,000 known rare diseases, and although they occur only in less than 1 in 2,000 people, it is estimated that 1 in 17 people will be affected by a rare disease at some point in their life. Because rare disease patients represent the minority, there is sometimes little public and professional knowledge of their conditions. This is reflected in the amount of reference materials available to professionals, such as...

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Drug Discovery Industry Course for Translators
31 January, 2014

As a large proportion of my work involves translating documentation used for the regulatory approval and marketing of drugs, I’m always very keen on expanding my knowledge of the pharmaceutical industry. Last weekend I attended a very informative course which provided a comprehensive overview of the discovery and development of medicines. The course was held in the splendid surroundings of the 16th century Emmanuel College, the University of Cambridge. Our course trainer Dr Ed Zanders of PharmaGuide, whose experience in biochemical research spans over 25 years, walked us through the key stages of the drug development process, from early discovery...

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Medical translations that make us [sic!]
18 December, 2013

What could be the worst thing about a visit to the dentist? In my case, it wasn’t hearing the sound of the dentist’s drill but reading badly translated dental care leaflets in the waiting room. I recently travelled to Poland to have a dental implant fitted at a state-of-the-art private dental clinic. While patiently sitting in the waiting room, I noticed a stand with a selection of dental care leaflets. I wouldn’t be a medical translator if I hadn’t picked a couple of them for a quick read. To my astonishment, a leaflet advertising the various benefits of specialist dental...

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Translators’ Wall of Fame: Chris Durban
3 November, 2013

Chris Durban doesn’t need introducing. She’s a member of ATA and SFT, a Fellow of ITI, and an active member of the translation community. If you’re a successful translator, chances are you’ve already heard of her. However, if you’re still working your way up the career ladder, then stop what you’re doing right now and get a copy of “The Prosperous Translator” co-written by her. It’ll make your climb easier. I was very excited to have the opportunity to chat with Chris in September at The Cracow Translation Days 2013. She may be an excellent translator, but she’s also a...

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A Healthy Balance Between Medical and Language Qualifications in Medical Translation
2 July, 2013

A couple of weeks ago, a new direct client approached me with a request to proofread and validate a set of medical publications for patients. The client’s assurance that the documents had been translated into Polish by speciality registrars quickly fired my enthusiasm for the new project. As I started reading through the text, I could not help but notice the many language flaws tarnishing the otherwise accurate Polish translation. As a bona fide linguist (not a polyglot, but a linguistic practitioner, that is) with a Master of Arts in English specialising in Linguistics, I have a keen interest in...

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