Tools to Make e-Learning Translation Easier

Guest Blogger
August 13, 2019

English is no doubt widely spoken and understood, but the majority of the world?s population is made of non-native English speakers. Reaching out to these customers is just as important, if not more important, as interacting with those who do speak English.

If English is your first language, it is fair to assume that you regularly interact with people in your native language, even if it is not there.

This is not the case for everyone else, which is why e-learning localization has become a necessity.

Benefits of E-learning Translation

People often neglect localization because it is a long, time-consuming process. But what they fail to grasp is that the payout you receive from localization is huge. Translating e-learning has many advantages, some of which we will discuss.

Broader Audience – Better Understanding

The basic goal of e-learning localization is to reach the maximum number of potential customers. It allows students from all parts of the world to easily gain knowledge. With 400 million people speaking Spanish, one billion speaking French and 250 million speaking Arabic (not to mention all the other languages like German, Russian, Japanese, etc.), how will e-learning be truly effective if it is limited to just one language?

When you localize e-learning, not only will it reach more people, but it will also improve their understanding of the subject.

Earn Credibility

Every industry requires time and effort to establish authority and earn credibility. The process of localization helps in boosting the image and perceived value of your business.

E-learning translation is visible proof for customers about your dedication to their market. When you inculcate as many languages as possible, others will view your organization as a reputable, global company that truly values students. This will also breed trust and loyalty with the students around the world.

Smart Move for International Companies

International companies have employees that come from around the world. Therefore, they speak many different native languages. It is therefore beneficial of international companies to offer learning content in every language to better serve and develop their workforce.

For employees that don?t speak English as their first language, there is the potential for a dangerous amount of inconsistency and misunderstanding. This is why e-learning localization is a smart move for any international business.

4 Tools You Need for Easy E-learning Translation

As the business landscape continues to become more global, the need to accommodate other languages is rapidly increasing. We have already established the need and importance of localizing e-learning material. But how can we ensure we get it right? Here are the tools that will help you translate e-learning easily and effectively.


A glossary is used to search for unfamiliar terms and their meaning. This helps improve the vocabulary used to successfully translate the course material. Most businesses use electronic glossaries that are very easy to access and use through automated tools.

Here are some steps to use a glossary effectively:

  1. Validation of Terminology: It is essential to ensure that important terminologies that are relevant to the target market are mentioned in the glossary. Also verify that there is no repetition and the glossary is organized properly.
  2. Specific Words Unique to the Organization: A long, daunting glossary list can intimidate and confuse the reader. Make sure that you stick to words that are unique to your business, and leave out the more generic terms.
  3. Context: A well-constructed glossary helps the translator create accurate content for the target market. To ensure this, the glossary should also contain, in addition to terms and their meaning, the context in which they are being used.

There are some words that cannot be translated into another language, such as the name of the brand. A list of these names should be provided separately to avoid confusion.

Digitized Terminology List

Also known as the termbase, the list of terminologies helps the translator use the correct vocabulary for the translation. This list acts as a thesaurus for translation.

It helps the translator choose accurate and consistent words that in turn improve the overall quality of the translation. Termbase is used in conjunction with the translation memories and can be easily scaled. To ensure maximum effectiveness, it should be updated periodically.

Style Guide

The style guide is perhaps the most important tool for translation. It ensures consistency as well as the effective delivery of the message to the target market.

In order to be effective, the style guide should have the following items:

  1. A list of Preferred Spellings: There are many different ways to write a single word, and they are usually all correct. For example, both spellings ?color? and ?colour? are correct, but they are used in different countries. This is why it is important to specify your preferred spellings.
  2. Punctuation and Grammar Guideline: It is important that you specify the proper grammar and punctuation practices, including the use of tenses, upper case letters, commas, date format, citations, etc.
  3. Tone and Voice: Inform your translator about the kind of tone that you want in your e-learning course. Do you want it to be authoritative or friendly? Technical or academic?

Translation Memories

Translation memories acts as a database that stores paragraphs, lists, sentences, and even headings that have been previously translated. This linguistic database helps reduce repetitive translation of the same terminologies. This helps save the translator?s time as well as your own. Not only does it ensure quick delivery, but it also results in cost savings for you.

For out-of-context translation, translation memories serve very effectively. Many companies rely on these memories to create separate pieces of texts that are later made into entire documents for the target audience.


In today?s landscape, e-learning translation has become a necessity rather than a luxury. It is important to produce accurate and effective content in the market. Tools such as a glossary, style guide, termbase, and translation memories can ensure that your organization provides high-quality solutions and effective translation. These tools will also make your localization process more efficient and cost-effective.


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