Ways of Translation Assessment


One of the ways in assessing translation quality is in accordance with Larson (1984:490-501), the strategies are as follows:

  1. Accuracy test
    Accuracy test means to check whether the meaning of source text (ST) is similar with the target text (TT). A translator should not ignore, add, or reduce the message contained in ST. Larson (1984:490) states the main objectives of accuracy test are as follows; a) to check the equivalence of information in a text, b) to find another problems by comparing ST and TT, after he/she is sure about the existence of the information need. It means that this test intends to ensure that the meaning and dynamic of ST are conveyed well in TT. The best technique in accuracy test is by making draft with two spaces and wide margin, so there is a space that can be used to edit the text.
  2. Readability test
    Larson (1984:499-500) proposes that readability test is intended to ensure whether the meaning of translated text can be understood. A text with a higher readability is easier to read than a lower one and vice versa. Readability test can be done by asking someone to read a part of translated text loudly. If she/he stops and reread a sentence, it means that there is a readability problem on the translated text. A text is readable because it is good writing, which is it has pleasing style, a good rhythm, and move along at an acceptable pace.
  3. Naturalness test
    The aim of naturalness test is to confirm whether the form of translated text is natural and equivalent with the TT. A text can be determined as natural if conforms to these criteria (Larson, 1984:497):
    a.    The meaning in ST is conveyed accurately;
    b.    The meaning in TT uses a standard grammatical pattern and vocabulary;
    c.    Translated text should represent an ordinary context in TT.
  4. Comprehension testing
    Comprehension testing is done to know whether the translated text is comprehend well by the reader of TT (Newmark, 1988:198). This test is related with referential mistakes that might be done by the translator. According to Larson (1984:493-497) comprehension test is done by asking people to retell the content of translated text and to answer questions about the text. This test is to test ST, not about reader’s capability. It is used to verify whether the reader can comprehend the translation.
  5. Consistency check
    Consistency is desired only when the same meaning is to be communicated. Consistency check is needed in technical things in translation, e.g. in translating proper noun or person name, in using loanwords, in making capital words, etc. Larson (1984:500-501) states that ST usually has key terms used frequently. If ST is long or the finishing process takes a long time, it might have a chance to have inconsistency of text equivalence for the key terms. To avoid inconsistency, a translator should check and re-check the result of translation.


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Larson, Mildred L. 1984. Meaning Based Translation, A Guide to Cross-language Equivalence. Lanham: University Press of America, Inc.

Newmark, Peter. 1988. A Textbook of Translation. London: Prentice Hall International.

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1 comment

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