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PD Dr. med.

English translation: comment

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09:25 Aug 30, 2008
German to English translations [PRO]
Medical - Certificates, Diplomas, Licenses, CVs / Titel
German term or phrase: PD Dr. med.
Ich möchte nochmals die Frage nach der Übersetzung des Begriffs "Privatdozent" im medizinischen Bereich aufwerfen, weil ich die bisherigen Antworten, insbesondere solche, die den Begriff "lecturer" beinhalten, für nicht besonders adäquat halte.
Es gibt in Deutschland viele Mediziner, die habilitiert haben, mit Unis, Plantstellen und regelmässigen Vorträgen nichts am Hut haben, ihnen steht der Titel aber als Nachweis "besserer" Qualifikationen zu als bei einem normalen Dr. med. der Fall zu.
Ein medizinischer Privatdozent hat also abstrakt eine Lehrbefugnis, strebt oft aber gar keine Professur an, sondern hat eine privat Praxis und wirbt quasi mit seinem Titel aufgrund der wissenschaftlich fundierteren Ausbildung.
Daher finde ich auch die Begriffe "assistant Professor" nicht so gut.
Gibt es doch noch einen anderen Lösungsvorschlag?
Kalikst
Local time: 13:19
English translation:comment
Explanation:
As there is apparently no equivalent term in English, IMO this is something that you have to deal with on a case-by-case basis as appropriate to the situation.
In this regard, you should bear in mind that people in English-speaking countries are generally much less 'title conscious' than people in German-speaking countries, and titles are often omitted in relatively informal contexts (where 'relatively' covers a broad scale).
In a context where the fact that the person holds the title of Privatdozent matters -- for example, in a formal academic context or (possibly) a legal context -- it should be used as is. If the target audience can be expected to know what Privatdozent means, nothing more is necessary; otherwise an explanation can be provided as appropriate.

In a situation where the title does not matter -- which IMO includes the bills for professional services sent by someone who practices medicine and holds the PD title but rarely if ever lectures at a university -- it can be lomitted, although there's no harm in leaving it as is -- but you shouldn't try to represent someone who never sets foot in a university as a lecturer or professor of any sort.

Common practice in English-speaking countries is to use only titles that are relevant to the situation. For example, a physician who has an MD degree as well as an MA in Art would use 'MD' in ordinary correspondence related to her medical practice, but 'MA' (or possibly even MD, MA) if she contributed articles to an art journal, and would probably omit both titles if she wrote a letter to the principal of the local school about a problem with one of her childeren enrolled in the school.
Particularly in the USA, the use of titles in situations where they are generally considered irrelevant is often regarded as ostentatious.

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Note added at 6 hrs (2008-08-30 15:53:04 GMT)
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With regard to your example of a report, IMO a professor in France can be expected to know the meaning of Privatdozent or to make the effort to find out what it means, so the title should not be translated. As lindaellen and I have both suggested, it is difficult to impossible to avoid distorting the meaning or misrepresenting the situation if you attempt to translate the term.

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Note added at 6 hrs (2008-08-30 15:57:41 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

I also agree with Nicholas's 'clarification' comments. In this regard it is much better to leave 'Privatdozent' as than to attempt to translate it, because anyone who is aware of what the title effectively means will give it the respect it deserves.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 6 hrs (2008-08-30 15:58:37 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Sorry -- that last bit should read 'it is much better to leave 'Privatdozent' as is than to...'.
Selected response from:

Ken Cox
Local time: 13:19
Grading comment
3 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
3 +2associate professor
Сергей Лузан
3 +2see wiki articlelindaellen
3commentKen Cox
3Visiting lecturer
Donal Murphy-Bokern


Discussion entries: 9





  

Answers


13 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
associate professor


Explanation:
Privatdozent, synonyms to privatdozenttutor, privatdocent, privatdozent, advise, assistant, assistant professor, associate, associate professor, coach, coacher, cram, cram with facts, crammer, ...
synonyms24.com/to/privatdozent/


    Reference: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&safe=off&as_qdr=all&q...
Сергей Лузан
Russian Federation
Local time: 15:19
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 8
Notes to answerer
Asker: sergey, prochitay tochno shto ja sprosil....;-)

Asker: There is no specific context: it is just a title you use normally with your name in Germany when sending bills, writing medical reports etc., like PD Dr. med. J. Schmidt Everybody in Germany knows than, that this person is not a university professort but more than a normal MD, if he gives lectures somewhere or not, is on the contrary not important at all.


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Ashima
2 hrs
  -> Thank you & gracias for your opinion, Ashima! :) Regards from Moscow :)

agree  babli: agree
2 hrs
  -> Thank you & danke for your opinion, babli! :) Regards from Moscow :)
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14 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
see wiki article


Explanation:
This article in English discusses the problem from an Anglophone perspective using the appropriate English vocabulary. Essentially, the problem is that the "PD institution" is only found in the German-speaking world. In any case, this is the best explanation that I have seen.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2 hrs (2008-08-30 11:34:17 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

"Docent" is also used in the US, it often refers to a well-educated museum guide. In Switzerland "Dozent" is used for teachers at Fachhochschule who do not have Ph.ds, but other qualifications. The "Privat Dozent" has a Ph.d and a Habilitation (a major publication which has been approved of by a university- not just prestige) - that's the difference and the language problem. Sorry, can't help any further.


    Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Privatdozent
lindaellen
Switzerland
Local time: 13:19
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 11
Notes to answerer
Asker: I am a Polish native speaker and the term "docent" is widely used there as well. And especially referring to MDs: they usually do not have the ambition to work ever as a professor at a university hospital. It is just a "status symbol"


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Ken Cox: One of those cases where the translation path from German to English opens into a vacuum. The practice and the basis for the term do not exist in English-speaking countries, so there is no word for it. (OK, agree)
5 hrs
  -> Thanks Ken.

agree  Nicholas Krivenko: I agree with both of you. Where a concept does not exist an annotation is more appropriate than a (wrong) translation.
7 hrs
  -> Thanks Nicholas.
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
Visiting lecturer


Explanation:
I've come across this term in science too. German academic titles are very difficult to translate - in some cases there is simple neither the word nor the concept (usually egoistic) to match the German.

A PD as described is a visiting lecturer. British and Irish Universities have many, but they don't carry titles and are simply called visiting lecturers.



Donal Murphy-Bokern
Germany
Local time: 13:19
Native speaker of: English
Notes to answerer
Asker: But isn´t is so that a "visiting lecturer" doesn´t necessary has to have the title as "Dr. HABIL.", the carreer path in Germany is: MA->PhD->Dr. habil. (=Privatdozent)->(full) professor-

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5 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
comment


Explanation:
As there is apparently no equivalent term in English, IMO this is something that you have to deal with on a case-by-case basis as appropriate to the situation.
In this regard, you should bear in mind that people in English-speaking countries are generally much less 'title conscious' than people in German-speaking countries, and titles are often omitted in relatively informal contexts (where 'relatively' covers a broad scale).
In a context where the fact that the person holds the title of Privatdozent matters -- for example, in a formal academic context or (possibly) a legal context -- it should be used as is. If the target audience can be expected to know what Privatdozent means, nothing more is necessary; otherwise an explanation can be provided as appropriate.

In a situation where the title does not matter -- which IMO includes the bills for professional services sent by someone who practices medicine and holds the PD title but rarely if ever lectures at a university -- it can be lomitted, although there's no harm in leaving it as is -- but you shouldn't try to represent someone who never sets foot in a university as a lecturer or professor of any sort.

Common practice in English-speaking countries is to use only titles that are relevant to the situation. For example, a physician who has an MD degree as well as an MA in Art would use 'MD' in ordinary correspondence related to her medical practice, but 'MA' (or possibly even MD, MA) if she contributed articles to an art journal, and would probably omit both titles if she wrote a letter to the principal of the local school about a problem with one of her childeren enrolled in the school.
Particularly in the USA, the use of titles in situations where they are generally considered irrelevant is often regarded as ostentatious.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 6 hrs (2008-08-30 15:53:04 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

With regard to your example of a report, IMO a professor in France can be expected to know the meaning of Privatdozent or to make the effort to find out what it means, so the title should not be translated. As lindaellen and I have both suggested, it is difficult to impossible to avoid distorting the meaning or misrepresenting the situation if you attempt to translate the term.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 6 hrs (2008-08-30 15:57:41 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

I also agree with Nicholas's 'clarification' comments. In this regard it is much better to leave 'Privatdozent' as than to attempt to translate it, because anyone who is aware of what the title effectively means will give it the respect it deserves.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 6 hrs (2008-08-30 15:58:37 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Sorry -- that last bit should read 'it is much better to leave 'Privatdozent' as is than to...'.

Ken Cox
Local time: 13:19
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 7
Notes to answerer
Asker: It is a very good point, and my example with the bill was not the best, but this title might be important, if you translate a medical report from Germany which has to be analyzed by a professor in France for example. The information about a higher academic position of the German MD might have an influence on the willingness to accept his findings by a high-rank MD in another country.

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