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Translatability Assessment

Mapi was the pioneer in developing the concept of Translatability Assessment (TA). Because of our experience in linguistic validation, we have built a strong expertise in TA studies.

Translatability Assessment can be defined as: the evaluation of the extent to which a measure can be meaningfully translated into another language.


The goal is to optimize the original measure under development to facilitate future translation through EARLY identification of difficulties, with the following objectives:

  • Increasing cross-cultural equivalence between original and subsequent translations
  • Enhancing pooling of data and comparability of results across countries
  • Improving the formulation of original instrument
  • Saving time in global studies


The process involves the critical review of a measure that is originally developed in one cultural setting, to assess the appropriateness and relevance of its key aspects to the target culture. Such measures include items, response choices, format, and instructions. It defines the concept of the original item, proposes acceptable alternatives for translations, and suggests alternative formulations for the original, if it may still be modified.

Ideally, the process is conducted by experienced linguists, in collaboration with the developer of the measure, before finalizing the original wording. It takes into account the context and constraints imposed by other languages and cultures, to optimize the original for subsequent translation, as well as for use in international settings.

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