Many companies recognize the need to translate their training courses into several languages. Whether the content is directed to new employees, partners or vendors, the quality of the e-learning translations defines the success of the overall course.

You can choose to translate your courses into one or several languages at once depending on your needs. Regardless of the number of languages you target, there are specific steps to follow in order to guarantee that the translation process will be smooth and efficient.

In addition to selecting the right language provider, you also need to know a few basic steps that will help your translators provide you with an immaculate final product. If you want to learn about e-learning translations read the following guide that will help you cope properly with this task.

Write with e-learning translations in mind 

When you start preparing your company training materials you need to be aware of the corporate training methods that are best to adopt in order to have successful employees. Once you have selected the right approach that best suits your business needs, you need to start preparing your training materials.

In order to facilitate the following e-learning translations, it is necessary to create a course that is translation-friendly. This can be achieved using the following easy steps:

  • Use professional e-learning content creators whenever possible as they will provide you with courses that will best match your specific needs. You will need to give them a few guidelines concerning your target audience, languages, branding image and style and they will be able to compile a great course with less effort and time.
  • Avoid too many cultural references in your content. Thus, it will be easily translated and localized for the different end users.
  • Avoid idioms and colloquialisms, as quite often such linguistic constructions are hard or even impossible to translate into a different language.
  • Write in clear and concise sentences without redundancies.
  • Be careful with any graphs, charts or other visual content that you include. They should be editable, and you need to keep in mind that many languages take up more space than English so leave sufficient space for expansions.

If you write an e-learning course following these simple tips, you will create content that will be understandable by both learners and translators. Such content can be easily translated into several languages and still be targeting the audience in the right manner.

Use the right software for creating your content 

It is important to use the right software to create your e-learning course. The appropriate tool will allow you to create the course easier and quicker by giving you access to a great library of images and other items that will facilitate your work.

Some of the tools, such as Articulate Storyline 360, for example, also provide for a much easier translation process afterward. It facilitates right-to-left and double-byte character languages e-learning translations and has an interface supporting five major languages: English, Spanish, German, French, and Chinese.

Choosing the right software will make it easier for you to both create an amazing e-learning course and have it translated in as many languages as you need without further ado. Always make sure to test the trial versions prior to selecting the tool for your company. Ask questions and review the offered plans so that the investment you make will be profitable.

Be aware of the common e-learning translation errors  

While your main focus is in the creation of the right e-learning course and selecting the most appropriate content for your target audience, you also need to be aware of the most common e-learning translation errors in order to avoid them.

If you have followed the tips above while creating the content, you have already avoided one of the common pitfalls associated with e-learning translations. There are a few other mistakes but here are three of the most common ones:

  • Failure to provide all of the source materials to the translation provider 

You have used significant background information to build your course and it will be essential for its proper translation as well. The more information and reference materials you give to your translation team, the better the results.

It is also beneficial to provide data about your intended goals, expected audience, geographical area, and other details that can affect the overall purpose of the course and its translation.  

  • Failure to build a glossary of terms 

A comprehensive glossary of terms gives translators an insight into your company and industry jargon. If you provide them with one, you will ease their work and cut down research time while increasing accuracy. The glossary will give the translators the necessary context for any term they are in doubt and along with your translation memory, it will enhance the overall quality of the translation while reducing the completion time.

  • Failure to test the course for translation mistakes  

It is of paramount importance to run a test through all translated versions of your course prior to sending it over. Thus, you will be sure that there are no mistakes or bugs that prevent learners from proper interaction with the modules.

Work with the right provider of e-learning translations  

While we speak about errors and possible failures in e-learning translations, we shall point out that the translation partner is the one that can make or break your course. While it is normal to look for a cost-efficient translation, you shall not make a compromise with the method and the provider.

Machine translation may have evolved significantly, however, it is still not equal to human translation therefore, do not strictly trust your e-learning translations to this method.

Look for a language provider that has experience in the field of e-learning translation and localization with translators who are native speakers of the target languages you need. This will guarantee a seamless translation process and a high-quality final product that will make you proud.

Here at ICD Translation, we have the knowledge, expertise, and experience to help you with your e-learning translations in any language you need.

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