The top 5 free terminology research 2.0 tools
Can’t find what you’re looking for in your go-to dictionary? No need to panic! Before you look through the reference books at your local library, open your favourite web browser on your computer or mobile device. Read on to discover (or rediscover) 5 free online tools that will help you find the right words in only a few clicks.
TERMIUM Plus® is probably one of the most useful tools available to us in our bilingual Canadian context. It’s the Government of Canada’s official terminology and linguistic data bank. Are you looking for the definition of a term or its official equivalent in French or Spanish, or even in Portuguese? TERMIUM is the tool for you!
Banque de dépannage linguistique
In French, should you say “montrer” or “démontrer”? “Chercher” or “rechercher”? “Juridique,” “judiciaire” or “légal”?
You can find the answers to all these questions in the Banque de dépannage linguistique (in French only) (BDL), a resource from the Office québécois de la langue française. The BDL also contains articles on French grammar, typography, abbreviations, syntax and more.
First of all, do you know what a concordancer is? It’s a tool that can display a word or expression in context, from a bank of original and translated texts already published on the web. There are quite a few, including TradooIT and Linguee.
The great thing about TradooIT is that it compiles similar results and displays them so that you can quickly and easily find the desired translation. You can also filter the results by source or by the form of the original expression (for example, words in upper case letters or words with a hyphen).
The advantage of using Linguee is that it includes both a concordancer and a bilingual dictionary. As a result, you can translate an expression by dealing with each word individually or with the expression as a whole.
Google advanced search
If you’ve ever done an Internet search, you’re most likely familiar with the Google search engine. Its advanced search functions allow you to optimize your search by making it more specific. It’s easy to find articles on the web that will help you master Google searches.
Are you still wondering which tool to use? Here’s a comparison table to help you out.
|Characteristics||TERMIUM Plus®||Banque de dépannage linguistique||TradooIT||Linguee||Google advanced search|
|Relevant search criteria||Yes||Not applicable||No||No||Yes|
|Results by field||Yes||Yes||No||No||No|
|Results frequently taken from reliable sources||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||No|
|High number of results||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Ability to keep a record of the results||Yes||No||No||No||No|
|Clear and structured explanations||Varies according to the source.||No||No||No||No|
|Terms always defined and put into context||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Ability to compare the full text in both languages||No||No||Yes||No||Varies according to the source. Most of the pages come from Government of Canada websites and are available in both English and French, so they can be compared.|
|Many new and “in” words||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Both dictionary and concordancer||No||No||Yes||Yes||No|
|Free mobile application||No||No||No||Yes||No|
If you still can’t find what you’re looking for, there may be a typo in the term or expression you’re searching for. But keep in mind that there are many other tools, both free and paid, available online.
And how about you? What are your favourite terminology research 2.0 tools?
Translated by Fatima Rizzo, Language Portal of Canada
The opinions expressed in posts and comments published on the Our Languages blog are solely those of the authors and commenters and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Language Portal of Canada.
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