When cApStAn Linguistic Quality Control was founded in May 2000, its core activity was to verify and validate translations produced by third parties. The founders brought in their experience from the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA).

Twenty years later, cApStAn offers a comprehensive range of translation quality assessment services such as expert reviews, translation verification, evaluation of machine translation quality, or final optical checks on delivery platforms.

While the cApStAn seal of approval is not a formal certification, it goes a long way in endorsing your translation procedures, confirming a translated version’s equivalence to the source and its appropriateness for the target audience.

cApStAn Modular Approach – we organise our language services into 4 key moments that are divided into 22 modules, or building blocks.

Depending on the client’s requirements, on time and resources available, and on the purpose and life cycle of the document, cApStAn will combine different modules to assemble a coherent project with the most suitable workflow. You will ultimately decide on which modules to keep.

The 6 modules tin key moment D take place after the translation/adaptation process. You can read more about the modules here.

For other modules, you can check the following links:

Modules related to tasks before the translation/adaptation process begins — Guide

Modules related to tasks during translation/adaptation process  — Translate




Key components of cApStAn’s translation quality assessment include:

1. Full verification

A full verification procedure would apply to sensitive or high-stakes data collection instruments. It is a segment-by-segment comparison of the target to the source, by trained cApStAn verifiers.


2. Focused verification

Sensitive or critical parts of an assessment or a questionnaire are earmarked for verification, and verifiers report on pre-selected aspects or on a sample of the translation.


3. Dual Verification

A linguist and a subject matter expert (SME) work together and a cApStAn project manager combines their feedback into an actionable report.


4. Compliance with translation and adaptation notes

As part of 1., 2. and 3. the verifiers check and report on compliance on segment-by-segment translation and adaptation notes.


5. Verifier intervention categories

To measure translation quality remains a challenge. cApStAn is known for its systematic use of a list of categories that describe translation quality and equivalence issues: this helps verifiers formulate their diagnosis and report on translation quality in a standardized way and helps cApStAn generate relevant statistics.


6. Automated check using VeryFire

Our translation technologists program project‑specific rules and language‑specific rules. VeryFire™, cApStAn’s in‑house QA utility, can automatically checks adherence to these rules (or to a glossary).


7. Machine translation quality evaluation

A combination of algorithms and targeted human evaluation, which will help make an informed decision about post-editing needs.


8. Back translation

At cApStAn, we don’t use back translation to assess quality, because this method does not give information about cultural appropriateness of the translation for the target audience, about register or about fluency in the target language. We make a selective use of back translation to explain issues detected at verification.


Scroll down to our read our translation quality control case studies.

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cApStAn Certify: Case study