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In the localization industry, we use so many terms that it is easy to get lost. We hope this glossary helps you to understand some of the most common processes involved in most localization strategies today.


Adding, deleting and rearranging letters, words and sentences in order to improve the quality of a text. Both an original and a translated text can be edited. In a TEP localization process, it comes after translation and before proofreading.


The process of designing a software application in a way that can be easily adapted to several languages and regions, without implementing any engineering changes later.

Linguistic Quality Assurance (LQA)

During linguistic quality assurance, or LQA, is a process by which translated and edited texts are reviewed in order to determine if there are any objective errors. It can be done in-house or by a language service provider (LSP), and the methodologies used vary depending on your specific needs.


Localization, often referred to as L10N, is the process of adaptation to a different culture. It involves translation, but also cultural and technical adaptations. It is particularly relevant when translating software, websites or video games, but it doesn’t apply exclusively to these industries.

Machine Translation Post-Editing (MTPE)

During this process, a machine-translated text is edited by a human linguist so it meets a minimum set of requirements and quality standards. Although MTPE can be useful sometimes, in our humble opinion it falls short when localizing highly creative materials, such as marketing or games.


Proofreading is the final reading of a text to find and correct any errors before publication. It is the final step of a TEP localization process, after translation and proofreading.

TEP (Translation, Editing, Proofreading)

TEP is a process involving translation as the first step, editing of the initial translations, and finally proofreading the edited copy. It is very common in the localization industry, and the preferred methodology of many LSPs, including ourselves.


Transcreation, or creative translation, is adapting a message from one language to another, focusing on the original intent, context, emotion and tone. While the actual wording can be completely different between the source and the target language, the target audience should feel the same emotions than the original one. Transcreation is particularly relevant in marketing localization.


The term translation refers to the communication of the meaning of a text written in a source language by means of an equivalent text written in a target language. It should not be confused with interpretation, which is oral instead of written. It is the first step of a TEP localization process.

Do you still have questions about these or other terms? We can help you, let’s have a chat!

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