AI in Test Localisation: Augment, Replace, or Preserve Humans? Steve Dept at E-ATP 2023 Conference in Vienna, September 20

The 2023 edition of the European Chapter of the Association of Test Publishers (E-ATP) annual conference is taking place in Vienna, Austria, on September 20-22. We at cApStAn are delighted that our Founding Partner Steve Dept has been invited to present during one of the sessions on September 20 at 14:15. His presentation is titled “Three attitudes to AI in test localisation: augment humans, replace humans or preserve humans”.


Multilingualism is not only a political priority in Europe, it is part of its identity. The way assessments are designed and administered in Europe reflects this.

Several countries have more than one language of instruction or official language. International organisations and multinational corporations recruit from a pool of European candidates.

As a consequence, the volume of content that needs to be translated has increased to dramatic proportions, and it is fortunate that technology allows for faster localisation of more materials, without exponential increase in costs. Today, the output quality of neural machine translation (NMT) often merely calls for focussed human interventions.

Large language models (LLM) generate items, reports and narrative content of which a significant proportion can be used with minimal human post-editing.

In this presentation, he will present three attitudes professionals have adopted with regard to using AI at scale in test translation, and we describe the types of models resulting from each stance:

1. Use AI and NMT to augment human capacity. This requires identifying those points in a workflow where human expertise adds the most value.

2. Ramp up the use of AI and NMT to gradually automate such a large number of localisation tasks that human work will become redundant.

3. Strive to preserve humanity, to protect it, and to regulate the use of AI, or ban it in certain contexts.

Each model will be illustrated with a concrete case in the European setting.

Stay tuned for full report after the conference.