The 4 most common types of translation (and when to use them)

When you need a text translated, there are generally four ways to have this done:


1. Machine translation (MT)


Translation by a computer programme (e.g. Google Translate). No human intervention.

Free, virtually instant translation
Bad quality – various errors and unclear or even absurd wording


2. Machine translation + human proofreading (PEMT)


A proofreader (only on rare occasions a professional translator) corrects the most obvious errors and unclear wordings of machine translation.

Fairly cheap and rapid
Still contains errors and bad wording


3. Human translation


A qualified and professionally trained translator translates the text.

Fairly accurate, well-worded translation
Costs more and takes longer than PEMT


4. Human translation + revision


A second translator carefully checks the translation of the professional translator.

The careful checks allow for the highest quality
Is the most expensive and takes the longest



In other words, the quality of the translation improves with each method, but so do the costs and duration:



What method is recommended for your text?


I just want to know
what it’s about
I want to know
what it says
I want to use the text
I want to publish
my text


Alta Verba only delivers translations using methods 3 and 4, depending on your company’s needs. Method 4 is the only way to guarantee the very best quality so that you can publish with full confidence. The other methods risk damaging your company image. Don’t be fooled by the exaggerated claims of machine translation, with or without human revision (methods 1 and 2). The risk to your company’s image is too great.