Free Mock General DipTrans Past Paper for Spanish-to-English Candidates
Below, you’ll find a mock Spanish-to-English DipTrans exam paper and sample translation, based on the general paper of the 2016 IoLET Diploma in Translation exam. The paper was an edited extract from an article in El País entitled La escritora Ana María Matute muere a los 88 años.
The full article is over 1,000 words, while the general paper in the Diploma in Translation exam is about 600 words. This isn’t the actual 2016 DipTrans exam paper, but my own edit of that article, to produce a mock paper.
I produced this translation in collaboration with two members of my Advanced Spanish-to-English translation course with DipTrans preparation, Alexandra Mollyneaux and Susanna Wilkey. They did the initial translation and produced feedback for each other. I then collated and edited their work to produce the sample translation included in the downloadable PDF. Thanks Susanna and Alex for taking part in this exercise. We also have a mock Social-Sciences exam paper in store for you.
Other free resources on this website to help you prepare for the Diploma in Translation exam
The downloadable PDF is below. Besides that, you’ll find other useful resources for the DipTrans on this website:
– How to Get DipTrans Past Papers for the Diploma in Translation Exam, which includes a free downloadable mock DipTrans exam paper for the technology option;
– a range of articles about preparing for the DipTrans are available from the translator training portal on this website.
Free downloadable mock Spanish-to-English general DipTrans exam paper
Click the button below to download the PDF file that contains the mock general DipTrans past paper. Below that is a short section with some notes that I made about the translation. Don’t read that section until you’ve completed the translation. Remember to do it under exam conditions: 3 hours, paper reference sources only (no Internet).
Notes on the above mock general DipTrans exam paper based on the 2016 exam (Matute)
One of the big challenges in this text is finding idiomatic alternatives rather than rendering the Spanish phrases literally.
– “La complejidad del ser humano”. “The complexity of human beings” seems to literal and can be improved.
– “Cuarto oscuro” = darkroom and not the darkest room, or similar.
– “Aguzaba su imaginación”. “She honed her imagination” is a better collocation than “she sharpened her imagination”.
– “Vestido”. While it seems odd to have a boy wearing a dress, I think that’s what it means. Commenters?
– “alas que oía escondida”. There is a typo in the original article on the El País website and this phrase should read “a las que oía escondida”. I removed this in the mock paper as I thought it unfair with so much else to think about.
– I opt to leave the Spanish book titles in (capitalising all main words, as per English convention, and putting them in italics). I would then offer official translations in brackets (capitalising main words and italicising). But, as far as I can tell, the books haven’t been translated (have they commenters?). So how do you differentiate between novels with and without official translations? In this entry on Matute in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, the English titles of untranslated novels appear in inverted commas, whereas the translated ones appear in Italics. Great solution.
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