NAATI advises all candidates to read the following information before sitting their test.
It includes what you need to bring, a description of how each task will operate and how the test will be assessed.

Checking In For Your Test

You must check in for your test between the arrival time and the registration closing time listed in your test confirmation email. NAATI staff will check you in by verifying your identity. You can view more information about our identity verification policy on the website.

NAATI will not admit you to the test if you arrive after the registration closing time.

Test Conditions

You must follow these conditions. If you do not, NAATI may cancel your test or not issue your test result. In this case, you will not receive a refund of your test fee.

Leaving the test venue
Once testing has started, you are not allowed to leave the test venue until your test is complete. If you do, you cannot re-enter the venue or continue your test at a later time.

Behaviour on test day
You are expected to be courteous and respectful towards NAATI staff, supervisors and other candidates. You cannot communicate with other candidates on the test day once your test has started.

Test materials
The test materials are provided in Word format. The sections which include the test instructions and materials are locked so that candidates cannot edit those sections.

Use of internet and communications devices
You are only allowed to use the following electronic devices in the Test Room:

  • One laptop or tablet on which you will:
    • Access the test materials and type your responses
    • Access offline electronic resources from your desktop/home screen
  • Standalone, offline electronic dictionaries, glossaries and thesauri.

You are not allowed to use any other electronic devices in the Test Room, including your smartwatch. When you check in for the test, you will be asked to turn off all the electronic devices that you are not allowed to use and put them in your bag. You have no access to the internet and must not use any communication and recording functions of electronic devices at the test venue.

Confidentiality
All test materials are the property of NAATI. You are not permitted to make or take away copies, paper or electronic, of any test material, or reproduce the test or communicate the test content to a third party.

What To Bring

Identity Document
You must bring an acceptable photo identity document (e.g. passport) to check in for your test.

Equipment
You must bring one laptop or tablet to complete your translation test, with the following:

  • At least one USB port (Type-A/Regular)
  • A power cord/connector
  • Word processing software installed (able to open and edit .docx files, and convert to PDF)
  • Any software or input tools you need to type in your Language Other Than English (LOTE) installed, with ability to use offline. You should download the Sample Material from the website to trial your language input tools on your laptop/tablet and confirm that they are operating correctly prior to your test
  • A mouse if you usually use one.

You can find information about language input tools in the Support section of the Microsoft and Apple website.

It is your responsibility to make sure your equipment will function for the entire test. You must mute all electronic devices during the test.

Resources
You may bring and use dictionaries[1], glossaries[2] and thesauri[3] during the test. They can be:

  • Hard copies of commercially available or self-developed dictionaries, glossaries and thesauri 
  • Electronic copies of commercially available or self-developed dictionaries, glossaries and thesauri that are accessible offline (You can only access these electronic resources on the laptop or tablet on which you complete your translation test. Electronic resources must be downloaded and saved onto your device prior to the test and must be accessed from the desktop or home screen during the test.)
  • Standalone, offline electronic dictionaries, glossaries and thesauri.

You are not allowed to:

  • Use any translation software whether online or offline (e.g.  computer-assisted translation tools, translation memory tools, and machine translation programs)
  • Access electronic resources through a second device such as a phone, laptop or tablet
  • Bring and use resources other than dictionaries, glossaries and thesauri, such as textbooks, texts and translations

NAATI will check resources and electronic devices on the day of the test and may not allow you to use them if they do not meet these requirements.

[1] A book or an electronic material that contains a list of words in alphabetical order and explains their meanings in the same or another language. It often also provides information about pronunciations, origins and usage of those words.
[2] An alphabetical list of the words and phrases in a text that are difficult to understand along with their definitions.
[3] A book or electronic material in which words with similar meanings are arranged in groups.
(Cambridge Dictionary, n.d.; Macquarie Dictionary, 1990)

What NAATI Will & Will Not Provide

During the test NAATI will provide:

  • A pen and paper for note taking (to be returned at the conclusion of the test)
  • A glass of water
  • Access to a power point for your laptop
  • A hard copy of the List of Error Categories for Candidates

NAATI will not provide:

  • Technical support should you experience issues with your equipment
  • Technical equipment, including laptop/tablet, mouse, adaptors and power cords/connectors
  • Internet access for candidates
  • Resource materials
Test Description

The Certified Translator test assesses your ability to provide quality, professional translation of complex but non-specialised written texts.

  • Two Translations of a Non-Specialised Text tasks (out of a choice of three)
  • One Revision of a Non-Specialised Translation task.

The language of the source text for each task will depend on the language direction of your test (i.e. English into LOTE or LOTE into English). You will complete all tasks on your own laptop.

Domains & Topics

All texts deal with topics set in different domains of daily life in Australia or the relevant LOTE society. These domains include government, legal, health, technology, science, business, community, society, culture, education, tourism, finance, consumer affairs, insurance, economics, employment, housing, environment, social services, industries and immigration/settlement.

Duration

You will have 3.5 hours to complete the test.

Test Environment

The Test Room is where you will complete the test. You are not allowed to ask for further explanation of the tasks or test conditions once the test starts.

You are only allowed to use the following electronic devices in the Test Room:

  • One laptop or tablet on which you will
    • access the test materials and type your responses, and
    • access offline electronic resources from your desktop/home screen
  • Standalone electronic dictionaries, thesauri and glossaries.

During the test, you can use dictionaries, glossaries and thesauri that meet the requirements outlined above.

You can also use offline functions and commands on the test materials in Word format, such as spell and grammar checks and the thesaurus. Some of the functions/commands can be used only for the editable sections of the document. For example, spell and grammar checks can be used in the sections where you type in your translations for the translation tasks. However, they cannot be used in the source text and translation sections for the revision task because these sections are locked.

You may take notes during the test using the pen and paper provided. You must leave any handwritten notes in the Test Room.

Test Supervision

A NAATI test supervisor will record start and finish times, and manage any other issues.

The supervisor is not permitted to talk about the content of the task or comment on your performance.

If you need help during the test, please raise your hand to alert the supervisor. You must always follow the supervisor’s instructions.

Recording of Tests

NAATI will provide the test materials to you on the day of the test on a USB memory stick. You will complete the tasks within the document on the USB.

You are responsible for regularly saving your responses on the USB.

Once you finish the test, you must save the final version of your completed test in both .docx and .pdf formats to the USB with your attendance ID in the file name. After checking that the documents have been saved to the USB, you can safely remove your USB and wait for the test supervisor to collect it.

These documents will be the record of your test. Examiners will base the assessment of your performance on the pdf version, not the word version.

Two Translation of a Non-Specialised Text Tasks

You will be provided with three texts, from which you must choose two to translate. Each text will be equivalent to approximately 250 English words in length. You will receive a translation brief for each text. This brief will include:

  • Domain and text type
  • Information about the source text, including author
  • Target audience and purpose of translation, i.e. who you are translating the text for and why.

You must provide a translation of the entire text for your two chosen texts, including the title and full content of the text. You will need to click your cursor in the response text box to enter your translation. Note that the source text has been locked to ensure candidates cannot amend or delete it.

One Revision of a Non-Specialised Translation Task

You will be provided with a source text and a translation of that text, as well as a hard copy of the List of Error Categories for Candidates. The source text will be equivalent to approximately 250 English words in length. The translation contains errors of meaning transfer and language. 

You will receive a revision task brief including the:

  • Domain and text type  
  • Information about the source text, including author 
  • Target audience and purpose of the translation, i.e. who the text was translated for, and why. 

You must revise the translation to identify, correct and categorise errors of meaning transfer and language, but not for style or personal preference of expression. To do this, you will compare the source text and translation to:

  • Identify errors in the translation: insert a comment box over each error to highlight the incorrect word, phrase, clause or sentence  
  • Provide appropriate corrections: type your suggested correction in the comment box, using the target language for the translation 
  • Categorise the errors: in the same comment box, indicate one error category in English that appropriately reflects the error, as outlined in the List of Error Categories for Candidates (e.g. “Unjustified omission”). In some instances, an error can be classified under more than one error category, and any appropriate category will be accepted

You can find instructions on how to work on the revision task and sample materials on the website. In preparation for your test, you should familiarise yourself with the List of Error Categories for Candidates, including the definitions and examples of each of the different error types (either in English or LOTE depending on the direction of your test). They include: 

  • Transfer of meaning errors, such as distortions, unjustified omissions and insertions 
  • Language errors, such as inappropriate register, unidiomatic expressions, errors of grammar, spelling or punctuation
Assessment Method & Criteria

At least 2 NAATI examiners will independently assess your performance in the test. They will assess each task separately using assessment rubrics with 5 bands (with Band 1 representing the highest level of performance and Band 5 the lowest).

Your test responses will be marked against each criterion, outlined below.

For the Translation of a Non-Specialised Text tasks, NAATI examiners will assess your:

  • Transfer competency: Meaning transfer skill, follow translation brief and application of textual norms and conventions
  • Language competency: Language proficiency enabling meaning transfer in the target language (either English or LOTE depending on the language direction of your test)

For the Revision of a Non-Specialised Translation task, NAATI examiners will assess your:

  • Transfer competency: revision skills and application of translation standards knowledge.

You should aim to achieve at least Band 2 for each criterion, and you must pass all three tasks to pass the test. You can find detailed information about the assessment rubrics and criteria on the website.

Supplementary Testing

If you attempt all three tasks and pass two of them, but fail the test overall, you are eligible to apply for a supplementary test. You must apply for the supplementary test within 6 months of receiving your test results. The supplementary test will involve re-sitting only one task from the task type that has been failed, but with a different topic.

If you pass the supplementary test, NAATI will award you the Certified Translator credential. If you fail the supplementary test, you will fail the overall Certified Translator Test, and you can apply for another test if you wish.