Free Translation of General DipTrans Past Paper (Spanish to English)
The full article is over 1,000 words, but the general paper in the Diploma in Translation exam is about 600 words. I didn’t have access to the actual 2016 DipTrans exam paper. Instead, I created my own source text and translated it. In this article, I’ll tell you how I did it, so you can do the same, then compare your translation against mine.
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 that you’ll find 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 download: translation of Spanish-to-English general DipTrans past paper
Click the button below to download the PDF file that contains my translation of the mock general DipTrans past paper. It’s a translation of sections of the Matute article published on the El País website. You’ll have to visit the article and use it to create your own mock general exam paper. Inside the download, you’ll find instructions on how to do that.
Further down this page, you’ll find a short section with notes that I made about the translation. Don’t read that section until you’ve completed the translation. Remember to translate under exam conditions: three hours, paper reference sources only (no Internet).
Notes on translating the mock general DipTrans past paper based on the 2016 IoLET exam (Matute)
One of the main challenges in this text is finding idiomatic alternatives rather than rendering the Spanish phrases literally.
– I’d be unlikely to know in the exam whether or not the literary prizes have official translations. I therefore opted to use their Spanish names (capitalised, no italics, as per English convention), but translating “premio” in lowercase, so not making that term part of the name, to avoid a Spanish overload.
– “La complejidad del ser humano”. “The complexity of human beings” seems too literal and can be improved through editing.
– “Cuarto oscuro” = darkroom, as in photography.
– “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, that is what I understand. Commenters?
– I didn’t know whether or not her works had been translated, and in the exam it would be unlikely you could find out. I therefore opted to leave the titles of her works in Spanish (capitalising and italicising all main words as per English convention), and offer my own translation. If some of them had been translated and others not, and I’d known the name of the published translation, I would have then offered the published translation in brackets (capitalising main words and italicising). My doubt was how to present my translations of the titles in a way that highlighted that they weren’t necessarily the published translations. In this entry on Matute in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, the English titles of the untranslated novels appear in inverted commas, whereas the English titles of the translated ones appear in Italics. I applied that solution.
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