Free Translation of General DipTrans Past Paper (Spanish-to-English Translators)

Last updated Jan 22, 2024
By Gwenydd Jones

Looking for DipTrans past papers? We’ve created a translation based on the text used for the 2016 DipTrans exam, general paper, for Spanish-to-English translators.

Below, you’ll find a link to request your instructions and sample translation of a mock Spanish-to-English general DipTrans past paper. It’s based on the general paper used in 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, but the general paper in the Diploma in Translation exam is about 600 words. We didn’t have access to the actual 2016 DipTrans exam paper. Instead, we created our own source text and translated it. In this article, we’ll tell you how we did it, so you can do the same, then compare your translation against ours.

We produced this translation in collaboration with two members of our Advanced translation course with DipTrans preparation, Alexandra Mollyneaux and Susanna Wilkey. They did the initial translation and produced feedback for each other. Lots of our students work together on projects like this to get extra practice through our study buddies system on the course. We then collated and edited their work, to produce the sample translation that you’ll find in the PDF. Thanks Susanna and Alex, for taking part in this exercise.

If you’re looking for a DipTrans exam preparation course, then look no further. Email us or get your free level test.

Other free resources on this website to help you prepare for the CIOL Diploma in Translation exam

The button to request the 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.

5 websites for free practice texts for the Institute of Linguists Diploma in Translation.

And don’t forget to build up your paper-based resources …

General recommended books for translators.

Recommended bilingual Spanish-English dictionaries.

Recommended bilingual French-English dictionaries.

Free translation of Spanish-to-English general DipTrans past paper

Click the button below and we’ll email you instructions on how to create your mock general DipTrans past paper. It’s a translation of sections of the Matute article published on the El País website. You have to visit the article and use it to create your own mock general exam paper. It’s easy to do and the PDF explains how to do it. A day later, we’ll email you our sample translation so you can compare it to your work and self-assess.

Further down this page, you’ll find a short section with notes that we 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).

Thank you for my free mock general Spanish-to-English #DipTrans past paper translation. Get yours here. Share on X

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.

Specific issues:

– 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”. I understand that the boy is wearing a dress.

– 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.

DipTrans Preparatory Course for Spanish-to-English Translators

Our Advanced Spanish-to-English Translation Course with DipTrans preparation is suitable for translators and aspiring translators who want to learn on a one-to-one basis with a qualified working freelance translator. Whether or not you plan to sit the CIOL Diploma in Translation exam, you’ll advance quickly with this personalised course. We work with DipTrans resitters too. Contact us.

Written by Gwenydd Jones

Gwenydd Jones is a Spanish- and French-to-English translator, an SEO blogger and a course creator. She is the founder of The Translator's Studio and the lead teacher on its courses. Connect with Gwenydd on LinkedIn or contact her through this website.

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