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Difference Between Translation and Interpreting

Translation services don’t solely include translation, but they can also include interpretation, transcription, transcreation, localization, and subtitling and voiceovers.

Many individuals refer to translating and interpreting interchangeably, when in fact, they’re two entirely different services and require different skills sets.

Let’s review the difference between translation and interpreting so that all of our clients understand exactly what they need from us at Language Concepts.



Translating vs Interpreting


To give you an overview of their differences, translations involve written materials between more than one language. However, interpreting involves verbal content between various languages.

Let’s discuss the specifics of each.

What is Translation?

Translation is taking written content from the native language and preserving its meaning in another.

Professional translators should have the ability to speak and write in both the original and target languages. They should translate into their native language only so as to guarantee the best output.

While understanding the source language is important, writing in the target language is especially crucial, where the spelling and grammatical aspects, among others, have to be perfect.

The translator also has to fully understand both the culture of the country from where the text originated, and the culture of the target audience to render the material as accurately as possible. To translate, the translator has the time to do research, use dictionaries and consult subject matter experts. Interpreters do not have the luxury of time, and their rendition is immediate. Unlike simultaneous interpretation, with consecutive interpretation, though, the interpreter has the opportunity to take notes.

For example, even bilingual individuals who understand two languages well, can rarely express themselves equally in both cultures, and a great number of them do not possess the skills to translate nor interpret.

At Language Concepts, we understand these limitations and strive to work with native and professional translators who fully understand the original language, as well as the target language, in order to provide our clients with the most accurate translations possible.

What Does Interpretation Mean?

Interpretation is when a translation is verbally communicated in real-time, either in-person, in a video conference or over the phone.

Interpreting is a process where a translator repeats what is said in the origin language out loud in the target language.

You may have seen this happen in media, shows, or movies, where one person may be being asked certain questions and their answers be interpreted by a translator.

Interpretations are essentially paraphrases, where the expert’s understanding is shortened to mean what the other person is saying.

An interpreter listens to the speaker in one language, comprehends the content of what’s being said, and finally, interprets their understanding of the content using the target language.

Interpreters, like translators, should have the ability to directly interpret in both directions of each language, on the spot.

Much experience, expertise and cultural knowledge is required for interpreters and translators in order to accurately convert material.


Our human translations and professional translation services could provide your business with the turnaround time that you're looking for.

We specialize in over 75 languages to cater to our clients and provide them with the translation services that they need, and we promise to do it to the best of our ability every time.

Whether you’re looking for translations to and from English, Spanish, Portuguese, and/or major Asian languages across the U.S., Language Concepts can provide you with top-quality translations that’ll benefit you and your business.


As a seasoned translation service company, Language Concepts provides translating and interpreting services that you can count on.

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