translation editor

Who Is A Translation Editor?

(Last Updated On: December 11, 2017)

Who is a translation editor?

I am sure you have done editing in your life. Be it in writing emails, letters, academic papers, or any other document, you always need to edit a new document. While translation is a profession that requires someone with great attention to details, most of the time, translators do not catch all the errors that may occur during the translation process. Due to these errors, the services of an editor are paramount.

As the name suggests, this is someone who looks at the errors in the translated documents and corrects them. A professional translation editor is someone with wide experience in the field and is well versed with all the terminologies of both languages—the language a document is translated from and the language a document is translated into.

During the translation process, for the translation editor to give a thorough copy, they always ask themselves several questions. Some of these questions include whether the original meaning is retained? Is the style of translation and terminology used ideal for the target audience? In addition, if the document has been translated by more than one translator, the translation editor may need to thoroughly look at the new document to verify whether the translated terms and texts are consistent.

Differences between editors and proofreaders

Many people do not differentiate editors from proofreaders. Although, the two may seem related, there is a great difference between them. A translation editor is interested in ensuring that the information and meaning carried by the new document is identical to the meaning and information in the original document. To ensure that there is sanctity in both documents, an editor comprehensively analyses the two documents for terminology and meaning.

To analyze the two documents comprehensively, the translation editor has to have deep knowledge of both languages used. On the other hand, a proofreader does not necessarily need to understand the languages used in the original document. Of great importance to the proofreader, is the new document.

The proofreader goes through the new document and ensures that the vocabulary, punctuation, and spelling used are correct. Although the proofreader is interested in the new document, it does not mean that they do not go back to the original document. In case the meaning of the new document is lost, they look at the new document to clarify.

If they cannot understand the language used in the original document they consult an editor .


A translation editor is paramount for an error-free document to be churned out. To have splendid work done, you need to hire a professional editor. Hiring an amateur editor not only results into substandard work, but it is also a waste of time and money.