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Changes to the Task Brief in the Certified Translator Test

As part of its ongoing quality assurance and review processes, NAATI has recently reviewed the format of the task brief for the Certified Translator test tasks – the translation and revision tasks. The new task brief format moves away from a narrative text style to an easy-to-read table format.

This change aims to standardise task briefs across all translation task types and languages while ensuring the brief remains in line with the assessment rubrics and test task specifications. 

There is no substantive impact on the nature of translation testing with this revision nor is there an impact on the test results as assessed to date. 

Revision Task 

With respect to the Revision task, candidates are currently instructed to revise a translation in accordance with a situation as set out in a detailed brief. Performance of the revision task however is not assessed on this criterion and a detailed brief is not needed. 

The Revision task adopts the new brief format, which provides standardised information regarding the text. The new format also includes an instruction to candidates reminding them not to edit the text for stylistic or preferential reasons.

Translation Task  

With respect to the Translation task, the task brief format has been reviewed to provide a more streamlined testing experience across languages without impacting on the assessment of the task. The new brief format ensures clear information about the text is provided to candidates regardless of their language. The table format provides consistency and is less variable than an imagined narrative brief, the quality and clarity of which can vary from one text to another.

Additionally, there is evidence that the ‘Follow the translation brief’ skill is in the overwhelming majority of cases not a deciding factor in passing or failing a candidate, and therefore a change in format has no impact in the candidate’s overall results.

Finally, the previous brief format instructed candidates to translate in accordance with the task brief, however this could be misinterpreted as an instruction to adjust characteristics of the source text in their translation.  As both the target and the source audiences are defined as educated, non-expert readers in NAATI’s test specifications, the new brief format standardises the target and source audiences to reflect this similarity.

Made in consultation with industry stakeholders, this change will enhance the candidate’s test experience by providing clear information about the text without impacting on assessment.

What Remains Unchanged

No changes will be made to the marking rubric for the assessment of ‘Follow the translation brief” skill. 

The test tasks format remains unchanged.

No changes to the brief format in interpreting test tasks are planned, given the different function the brief serves in that context. 

To access the latest assessment rubrics, please visit Certification Test Marking

View the sample materials and new brief format.

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