Bilingual Glossaries, Dictionaries, and Style Guides

Governmentwide resources to make communicating government information to multilingual audiences easier and more consistent.

The bilingual glossaries, dictionaries, and Spanish language style guides available in this section are resources for government employees, translators, and communications professionals who work with the government to improve the way we communicate with the public in languages other than English.

Glossaries We gathered existing bilingual glossaries from around the government and put them in one central location for easy access. The glossaries are organized by topic, some offer a variety of languages, and come from different government agencies in the federal, state, or local governments or organizations commissioned by the government to produce them.

Dictionaries The Bilingual Dictionary from the National Cancer Institute is a collection of over 8,300 cancer terms in English and Spanish to provide a comprehensive cancer vocabulary that can be easily used with a variety of audiences when communicating complex information.

Multilingual Language Style Guides The Multilingual Language Style Guides contain information on grammar and style issues to standardize the use of languages across government. Also includes style guides from other government entities.

Note: This is a living page, please help us update it, improve it and make it more comprehensive. Send updates to existing resources, new resources and comments to Laura Godfrey, Lead, Multilingual Community of Practice.

Government Bilingual Glossaries

Financial Terminology

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)

The Bureau updated the Glossary of English-Spanish Financial Terms (505 kb, PDF, 76 pages) with additional terminology compiled from other agencies and entities.

Glossary of English-Chinese Financial Terms (PDF, 1.5 MB, 71 pages)

Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)

FHFA (along with partner agencies) has created a searchable English-Spanish Glossary of Mortgage Translations. Glossaries in other languages are planned for the future.

Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

The Glossary of Tax Words and Phrases Used in Publications Issued by the IRS is currently available for download in six languages (all were last revised in August, 2018):

Health and Well-being

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

General Terminology

Social Security Administration (SSA)

This English-Spanish Wordbank Glossary offers information ranging from states and days of the weeks to health.

Environment

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

The EPA’s Glosario ambiental bilingüe has a wealth of terminology, abbreviations, and acronyms used by many of the EPA’s environmental programs.

San Francisco City and County

The Translation Glossary page provides a link to download a Microsoft Excel.xlsx file for glossaries in three languages: Spanish, Vietnamese, and Filipino (Tagalog).

Education

Below is a compilation of available resources from different education organizations.

Dictionaries

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health

The National Cancer Institute has a dictionary of cancer terms in English and Spanish.

Multilingual Language Style Guides

USAGov Bilingual Style Guide

The USAGov Bilingual Style Guide is a practical guide on the best practices used to create bilingual digital content for USAGov and USAGov en Español.

The City and County of San Francisco

The Filipino Translation Style Guide provides guidelines for translation in the Filipino language for the City and County of San Francisco.

Additional Resources

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