Saturday, 9 June



Iris Schrijver, Translation quality (assessment): Insights from Translation Studies in the quest for the holy grail?


Translation quality is an important issue for practitioners, clients, trainers and scholars alike. It is a source of both fascination and despair, since it raises a number of thorny questions. These include: What is translation quality? Can we even define it? Is there a ‘gold standard’ or something like ‘acceptable quality’ and, if so, what are they? Can we measure translation quality and, if so, how do we assess it?

In this talk, I will report on how translation quality and translation quality assessment are approached in Translation Studies. I will start by providing a brief overview of how translation scholars have defined translation quality in the past and how it is defined currently. I will then report on the latest research on translation quality assessment by discussing various methods (e.g. error-based or analytic assessment, holistic assessment and assessment that focuses on ‘rich points’). I will reflect on the benefits and drawbacks of these methods as well as on how valid and reliable they are considered to be. Last but not least, I will present a number of tools that are currently used in academia to carry out translation quality assessments.

The aim of this talk is to update delegates on the academic debate about translation quality and its assessment. I also invite you to join me in a discussion of the most pressing questions that practitioners have regarding translation quality and translation quality assessment which merit further scientific exploration.


About the presenter

Iris Schrijver photoDr Iris Schrijver is a tenure track assistant professor at the Department of Translators and Interpreters at the Faculty of Letters and Philosophy of the University of Antwerp, where she teaches an introductory course in Translation Studies as well as several courses on translation from Spanish into Dutch. She holds an MA in Translation and a PhD in Translation Studies. In 2016 she was awarded the Young Scholar Prize 2016 from the European Society for Translation Studies for her doctoral dissertation entitled ‘The translator as a text producer: The effects of writing training on transediting and translation performance.’ Her main research interests are the acquisition of translation competence, cognitive translation processes and translation quality assessment.