Transcript translation has one rule that supersedes all others: It absolutely must be accurate.
When you’re sending your transcript to a foreign institution, you want to be sure that you and your grades are being represented correctly. To ensure this, there are a few things you can do to get the most accurate transcript translation possible.
Here are our top four tips:
1. Proper transcript translations cost money, so only translate what you need.
Individual colleges and universities have differing requirements, and you should make sure that you are only translating the documents which you need to submit.
Carefully read over the instructions given by the school so that you do not waste time and money translating course records and exam results when just a transcript translation would have sufficed.
Of course, if you are unsure, it’s better to have accidentally translated too much instead of too little.
2. Supply the most readable documents possible.
Our translators are skilled at deciphering difficult handwriting and of course know all the usual academic terminology. However, they are still only human. They can only read what is printed on the page.
Extremely faint stamps or scribbles in place of signatures are going to be nearly impossible to distinguish. If your document is smudged or poorly printed, help the translator out by requesting a cleaner copy from your school.
However, do not write on or white out any part of your transcript! This can render a document suspect and void a translation.
3. Did you take an unusual class? Show us a course catalog.
We use professionals for transcript translation, and they know their stuff. Our translators are familiar with commonplace educational phrases and normal transcript abbreviations — the usual variations on how “History 101” is represented are not going to be an issue.
But if you attend the only school in South America that offers Intermediate Juggling as a physical education alternative, and it has a strange abbreviation on your transcript, that’s going to be a pretty tricky translation that will require a lot of research from your translator.
Providing reference materials in situations such as these will make the translator’s job much easier, and will help us provide you with the most accurate translation possible.
Remember, reference materials must be objective third-party sources. Good examples include published dictionaries, glossaries, or your school’s course catalog.
4. Impartial translations are key — use a professional company.
Your bilingual friend is not qualified to translate your academic records. You do not want to cause problems for yourself by submitting a translation with mistakes that a professional would have easily avoided. Colleges see transcript translations all the time. It will be obvious to them if an amateur translates the document.
You should do everything you can to make sure that your application is successful. The best way to be sure that your transcript translation is acceptable is to obtain a certified translation from a professional company.
At ULS, we provide professional, certified translation services in more than 200 languages.