A Study on the Quality of Abstract Translation of Dissertation from Indonesian into English

Sukirmiyadi Sukirmiyadi, Sri Samiati Tarjana, M.R. Nababan, Sukirmiyadi Sukirmiyadi


Abstract is one of the important parts in one research due to the fact that it is a kind of short condensed text to represent the whole text. As one research that consists of some aspects such as introduction, objective, methodology, result / discussion, and conclusion, so that an abstract should cover those five aspects. However, in fact many abstracts do not have those five completely. Therefore, an abstract that should be written in 5 separated paragraphs, it is sometimes written in 4, 3, 2, or even 1 paragraph. This might cause the coherence of the text is not good. Besides, in this globalization era, abstract is usually written in two languages, Indonesian and English. Moreover, most of the translators in Indonesia do not focuss on one kind of text but all kinds. As what many experts of translation and linguistics often say that the work of translation is not such an easy job to do. This might cause the result of translation especially related to accuracy, acceptability, and readability is not as good as what it is expected.
In line with the background of study above, this research was aimed at investigating the writing format of dissertation abstract, abstract structure and its coherence of text used both in source text and target one. Besides, it was intended to analyze and describe about the result quality of the abstract translation of dissertation in accordance with its accuracy.
Meanwhile, the research methodology used was descriptive qualitative, with a strategy of embedded case study. The research data were 15 (fifteen) texts of dissertation abstract consisting of 7 (seven) texts of medical science, and engineering of the 8 (eight) others written in Indonesian and their translation in English. The data collected were the number of paragraphs, abstract structure, cohesion, and coherence of text. To obtain the required data, the researcher made some questionnaire and did interviewing to some raters. Those requested to assess the quality of translation were some experts in translation and linguistics. The range of score was 3 for : ‘good’, 2 : ‘not so good’, and 1: for ‘bad’. The result of their assessment was used as an instrument to analyze the data and made a conclusion.
Having discussed and analyzed the data, it was found that: 1) The writing format in accordance with (a) the number of paragraphs: 2 texts or (13,33%) consisted of 1 (one) paragraph, 6 texts or (40%) had 3 paragraphs, 3 texts or (20%) consisted of 4 (four) paragraphs, and 4 (four) texts or 26,66% had 5 (five) paragraphs; (b) The number of abstract structure: 1 (one) text (6,66%) missed ‘introduction’, 4 (four) texts or (26,66%) did not have ‘objectives’, 6 (six) texts or (40%) did not have ‘conclusion’, and only 4 (four) texts or 26,66% had complete abstract structure: introduction, objective, methods, results / discussion, and conclusion; 2) The average score of the whole text structure of abstract dissertation and its coherence of text was as follows: The source text was ‘2,15’ and catagorized as good (C), meanwhile the target one declined into ‘1,77’ and categorized as fair (D); 3). Based on the final result, it was found that the average score of accuracy was ‘1,97’. This could be interpreted that the accuracy level of translation text of dissertation abstract written by PhD students was ‘Less Accurate / Fair (D)’.
Based on the data analysis and discussion, it could be concluded that there were some variations of writing format of dissertation abstract. Some abstracts were written in 5 paragraphs, 4, 3, and even 1 paragraph. Meanwhile, according to the number of abstract structure, some abstracts were not provided with introduction, objective, or conclusion. Therefore, in general the quality of abstract structure and its coherence of text was not so good, and the result of its translation of the target text was worse than that of the source text. Furthermore, the average score of accuracy of the target text was lower than that of the abstract structure and categorized as ‘less accurate’ or fair (D).

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijl.v6i2.5552

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