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Toronto, ON
M5G 2H1

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Voice Translation Research

There's been a substantial amount of research in the field of voice translation. We've worked with University College London to learn more about the value of dubbing vocal content.

Jorge Diaz Cintas the Professor of Translation Studies at UCL does research in the field, and most recently released a paper entitled "Film censorship in Franco's Spain: the transforming power of dubbing."

Voice Translation vs. Subtitling

One of the areas of research covered was eye-tracking on subtitled vs. dubbed videos. They measured where their test groups were looking throughout each video, and then proceeded to test them on the contents of the video to determine how much they understood. The results of the paper indicated that while both subtitling and dubbing were effective translation methods, dubbing a video allowed the viewer to pay more attention to the content and led to higher levels of comprehension.

Dubbing Condition

Subtitling Condition

Aside from where viewers were looking at a given point in time the study also captured heatmaps of user focus over the course of the video, illustrating how much of the user's attention subtitles demanded.

Study 1: Caramel

Dubbing

Subtitling

Study 2: Sherlock

Dubbing

Subtitling

Heatmaps showing the accumulative duration of fixations for all of the participants watching the excerpts under the dubbing or the subtitling conditions in Study 1 and study 2

Voice Translation vs. Subtitling

Going forward we intend to continue working with UCL and other universities, and hope to gain a bit more insight into the comprehension differences between poor-quality and high-quality dubbing.