Fee suggestion per scientific term
Thread poster: elisajoy

elisajoy
Local time: 01:33
Hebrew to English
+ ...
Jul 3, 2012

I am looking for advice on the fee I should charge for translating specific scientific terms. I may get even just one or two terms, here and there, so obviously it must be price worth the hassle. What would you say about 10$ per term? I cannot find information on this anywhere. Note - I am a scientist too in this specific field (Earth Sciences).
Thanks, Elisa

[Edited at 2012-07-03 07:19 GMT]


 

Alexander Onishko  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:33
Member (2007)
Russian to English
+ ...
* Jul 3, 2012

elisajoy wrote:

I am looking for advice on the fee I should charge for translating specific scientific terms. I may get even just one or two terms, here and there, so obviously it must be price worth the hassle. What would you say about 10$ per term? I cannot find information on this anywhere. Note - I am a scientist too in this specific field (Earth Sciences).
Thanks, Elisa

[Edited at 2012-07-03 07:19 GMT]


I think that 1 usd per term (not per word) would be fair enough. But you can charge more, if you which.

Another option is to charge your minimum fee - say 25-50 usd for the whole job.

[Edited at 2012-07-03 19:59 GMT]


 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:33
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Typo? Jul 4, 2012

Hi Elisa,

did you mean $ 0.10 per word? $ 10.00 per word would be... the impossible dream.icon_smile.gif

You might consider a minimum charge or, if this turns into a long-term business relationship, you might also consider monthly invoices.

Regards,
Thayenga

[Edited at 2012-07-04 06:03 GMT]


 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 00:33
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
$10 per term is cheap, but you have to limit it somehow Jul 4, 2012

elisajoy wrote:
I am looking for advice on the fee I should charge for translating specific scientific terms. I may get even just one or two terms, here and there, so obviously it must be price worth the hassle. What would you say about 10$ per term? I cannot find information on this anywhere.


I think the assumption is that if you charge per word, the easy words and difficult words tend to cancel each other out in the end. Or, the assumption is that if you're a translator, you charge for typing the translation, and your rate should just include an allowance for time spent doing term research.

Charging $10 a term sounds like a good idea, if you can convince your client, but then your terms really, really have to be able to stand up to scrutiny. You'd also have to figure out how to convince the client which words are 10c words and which words are $10 words.


 

elisajoy
Local time: 01:33
Hebrew to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
not a typo Jul 4, 2012

Hi,
Thanks , no it was not a typo. I meant 10$ a word, since I am not translating a 1000 word document, I am doing maybe one word or two words per job, specific terms they need for their subtitles for documentaries. They have a translator but want professional advice on scientific terms.
Thanks for your ideas.
Elisa


 

Jenn Mercer  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 18:33
Member (2009)
French to English
hourly rate Jul 4, 2012

Give the client a wide estimate of the number of terms you could define at this level and then charge at a minimum hourly rate. This will likely have the delightful side effect of causing the client to group the terms in batches which will be less disruptive to your work flow.

 

LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 18:33
Russian to English
+ ...
No extra charge for specific words Jul 4, 2012

I think there should be no extra charge for specific scientific words, but the overall rate should be higher. It is usually $0.15-0.30/w. I also don't think people who don't have relevant education in the particular scientific field where the phrases come from should accept such translations. I don't have you in mind, because I have no idea what you background is -- this is just a general statement.

In your situation, Elisa, I think you should charge them by the hour, for research, rather than for translation.









[Edited at 2012-07-04 15:05 GMT]

[Edited at 2012-07-04 15:06 GMT]


 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 00:33
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
Hourly rate Jul 4, 2012

Here I am assuming you are researching these terms and more or less compiling individual glossary entries, not simply looking them up in an already existing dictionary. Because you are a subject expert, you may be able to find them faster than others, and you will recognise the correct term reliably when you find it.

Either you need to find an average, realistic time per term and fix that as your rate, or you can take the terms in batches and charge for the time you actually spend on each batch.

But this is not, as you say, a text, where in principle you charge the same for all the easy words as the difficult. As I understand it, there are no easy words, because the other translator has done those.


 

Jennifer Barnett  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:33
Dutch to English
+ ...
charge per term Jul 5, 2012

I recently translated about 1,300 terms on cultural heritage objects and their definitions (Dutch & Flemish to English): references for the translations were required as well. Most of the terms did not appear in the usual language dictionaries and there is no Flemish-English dictionary. Many terms were archaic and/or regional dialect. Sometimes it took 2 hours to find the English version and sometimes I had to use a descriptive phrase as there seemed to be no English translation. And this was after discovering various hitherto unknown (to me) digital resources of sufficient quality. To determine that a term had no English equivalent also took a great deal of time as it is obviously more difficult to be sure.

Having started off at a word rate, I switched to €6/term after calculating that this should earn about €30/hour on average. This seems to have worked out satisfactorily.

However I can't image that scientific terms would pose such difficulties.


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 00:33
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
An estimate based on hourly rate Jul 5, 2012

I think an hourly rate should be appropriate. However, since the customer probably needs to know about the actual cost they will bear, you might want to do an internal test with a sample of terms, and see how long each term takes on an average. Then you can give the customer a quotation for the maximum cost, which you could reduce if you finally require much less time.

 

Dr. Matthias Schauen  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:33
Member
English to German
Hourly rate doesn't work well here Jul 5, 2012

I assume elisajoy will not have to research the terms, since she is an expert. If this is true, each term translation would take here maybe 1-2 minutes (including correspondence), while a non-expert might need between 5 and 45 minutes per term. To account for this, the hourly rate would have to be very high, say USD150/hour. Based on this, a rate of USD2-10 per term is certainly justified

 


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