The qualifications of the English to Arabic translator are no different from those of any translator who works with any other language combinations, but there are some concerns that any English to Arabic translator should take into consideration before deciding to become a professional translator; these
qualifications should also be taken into account on assigning a job to or hiring an English to Arabic translator.
The specific qualifications of English to Arabic translator
Talking about the specific qualifications of English to Arabic translator stems from the fact that good translators, before they master the target language into which they will be working should master their native language, strange as this may sound at first sight. In the case of the English to Arabic translator we can see that this condition is not always fulfilled. During the time I worked as a Spanish, English to Arabic translator, I reviewed and proofread hundreds of translations. Regrettably, I saw a lot of translations that gave me the impression that a non-native Arabic speaker had done them. The translation market is full of English to Arabic translators with bachelor’s and post graduate degrees in translation and linguistic studies who have an admirable knowledge of the target language, but unfortunately, are not sufficiently proficient in their the source language, i.e., their native language. Why does this happen? We can attribute it to the fact that the Arabic language that we translate into is not the day-to-day language in the Arabic world.
The impact of the local dialects on the work of the English to Arabic translator
So an English to Arabic translator speaks and thinks in one language, while learning and working in another one. In Arabic-speaking countries there are two linguistic levels: the official language, which is Modern Standard Arabic, and the local dialect. This means that in day-to-day life English to Arabic translator based in Iraq uses a language that differs from the one used by English to Arabic translator living in Morocco. Both linguists actually share the same dictionaries, the same linguistic sources, the same methods and writing styles, but due to the differences in the Arabic language used in each country and the interaction between Modern Standard Arabic and the local dialect, we find few common features shared bythe Modern Standard Arabic in each country, due to differences in administrative language, the increased flow of communications between Arab-speaking countries, population movements from one country to another other and the growing role of social media in daily life. All these factors are having the effect of reducing the features between Modern Standard Arabic in the different countries on the one hand, while also reducing the gap between Modern Standard Arabic and the local dialects on the other. Furthermore, the English to Arabic translator is not able to translate into local dialects that are different to his/her own.
The impact of the modern educational system on the work of the English to Arabic translator
The different educational systems that have arisen in Arabic-speaking countries during the past decades have had their own effect on their evaluation of Modern Standard Arabic: in some countries the Arabic language is not the teaching language in high schools and universities, so we have cases of English to Arabic translators who hold a degree in translation or linguistic studies but did not study Modern Standard Arabic in their own native language, the. The problem here is that Modern Standard Arabic, like any other language, has a set of grammatical rules along with specific writing and literature styles.These rules and styles are not applied to the local dialect, so the English to Arabic translator doesn’t have enough knowledge of Modern Standard Arabic, and this kind of English to Arabic translator will therefore not be able to provide a correct, fluent text in Arabic.
The impact of the globalization on the English to Arabic translators
Unfortunately, the globalization and modernization processes that Arabic-speaking countries have witnessed during the past few decades have made Modern Standard Arabic lose its presence and importance in academic curriculums at all levels of the education process:official and public communication tilts in favor of foreign languages, with the result that Arabic-speaking countries have highly qualified elites who have a perfect knowledge of foreign languages but lack sufficient knowledge of their native language. This is also the case with English to Arabic translators.