Cambridge University Press

Cambridge University Press

Typesetting and proofreading for the world’s oldest publishing house

Our client is Cambridge University Press, the world’s oldest publishing house and the publishing business of the University of Cambridge.

They contacted Asian Absolute about a series of projects:

The first was a large volume of typesetting of bilingual English-Vietnamese primary school Science coursebooks, which also involved InDesign file creation and design. Two large, related proofreading projects followed.

What challenges were identified?

The first step was to review carefully the initial files provided by our client, all the project stages and volumes described in the Statement Of Work, as well as the timelines requested. At this stage we assessed the work involved in all phases, clarifying any questions in order to organise the work in such a way as to ensure all client requirements would be met.

Communication with the client was key. In order to reach a successful outcome, we needed to understand our client’s needs fully and inform them in turn of our capabilities and skills. As always, we were happy to follow our client’s preferred manner of working and we kept giving them regular updates on the status of the project and what was being done.

During all stages, we maintained flexibility to be able to accommodate our client’s requested changes and amendments to the files, re-thinking our strategy when necessary.

For the proofreading projects, we assembled the team of linguists who were most suitable for the task. We lined up Subject Matter Experts, some of them were or had been primary school teachers. All of them were familiar with the topic and had a matching educational and/or professional background.

In order to meet the client’s desired deadlines, we divided the work between the linguists. This was agreed with the client ahead of time.

What were the stages of the projects?

The Typesetting Project

The client selected their preferred fonts from a selection of different fonts we sent through for their approval.

Bilingual files were required, with English on the left and Vietnamese on the right hand side, so we made sure to strictly follow the provided materials and create InDesign files with perfectly mirroring English and Vietnamese double pages. The pagination for the English and Vietnamese sides per spread had to be the same.

Thanks to our Project Manager identifying and dealing with any challenges the moment they appeared (e.g. promptly flagging any queries around tagging or missing translation), we were able to accommodate all the work and implement all client feedback while keeping within the client’s budget and timeline.

Once the initial large typesetting project was complete, we reviewed the changes requested by the client’s proofreaders and implemented them.

The Proofreading Projects

The two Vietnamese language proofreading projects came next.

Working in PDF format increased the time required as anticipated. But, as we had identified this challenge at the planning stage, the time factor had already been taken into account and each of our linguists marked the PDF files and entered the relevant proofreading comments following the exact method and guidelines requested by the client.

What was the outcome?

There was a final last-minute change needed, of course. It was decided that the Vietnamese-language version’s glossary should appear in English alphabetical order (and thus match the order of the English version); this was implemented overnight so as not to delay our client’s printing process.

This meant that the client received the amended and final files as an upload to their dedicated platform the following business day, with corresponding folders and sub-folders in place as requested.

So the primary school children could receive their textbooks as scheduled – and start studying!

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