Translating Collocations from English into Arabic and vice versa: An Empirical Study
Keywords:English collocations, Arabic collocations, bilingual translation, EFL students
Collocations are defined as ''the frequent co-occurrence of lexical items that naturally share the characteristics of semantic and grammatical dependencies"(Ibrahim, 2003: iii). In translation, collocations are considered a factor that makes translation more effective and powerful. However, translating collocations is an everlasting struggle for most students of translation. The present study aims at investigating the challenges that Sudanese EFL university students encounter when rendering English collocations into their Arabic equivalences and vice versa as well as the reasons behind these challenges. To this end, 26 Sudanese EFL students, between 20-30 years old, studying at Nahda College in Sudan, were selected. A diagnostic test composed of two questions is used as a tool for data collection. Frequencies, percentages, mean, and standard deviation are used to analyse the collected data. The results of this study manifests that Sudanese EFL university students encounter difficulties in translating collocations from English into Arabic and vice versa; the causes of these difficulties are due to students’ unawareness of the linguistic and cultural differences between the two languages as well as their heavy reliance on literal translation strategy.
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