On Translating Prepositions from English into Indonesian: A Case Study of Indonesian EFL Students

Sependi Napitupulu


This study attempts to investigate errors in translating prepositions from English into Indonesian language by Undergraduate students at the Methodist University Indonesia, Medan. A total of 20 students in the Department of English Literature, Faculty of English Letters were involved in this study. Forty sentences containing English prepositions were translated by the students. The translations were then compared with the Indonesian equivalence in order to find out the quality of their translation. In order to measure the quality of preposition translation, three categories were referred to, namely: correct translation, correct with revision translation, and incorrect translation. Having analyzed the data, it revealed that most of the students failed to translate complex prepositions such as phrasal verbs. However, most students successfully translated simple prepositions such as noun prepositions and adjective prepositions. From 100% correct translation expected of students, only 44.37% of the total correct translation of prepositions committed by students. While correct with revision, from 100% correct translation with revision expected of students, only 41.75% of the total correct translation that need revision is produced by students. In the meantime, 13.75% of the total incorrect translation is produced by students. It was concluded that students tend to face problems in translating prepositional verbs as they are rarely used by and unfamiliar to students.   

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijl.v9i3.11442

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