Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2018

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

First Advisor

Kathy Escamilla

Second Advisor

Guillermo Solano-Flores

Third Advisor

Susan Hopewell

Fourth Advisor

Jamy Stillman

Fifth Advisor

Bhuvana Narasimhan

Abstract

This dissertation addresses the possibility that cultural and social factors influence the ways in which test translation review procedures are implemented. Sensitivity to these cultural and social factors is viewed as critical to valid testing in international large-scale assessments. It examines the extent to which the implementation of the TTTE-based translation review procedures may be influenced by the characteristics of a hierarchical society with considerable social and power distance. Also, it examines the challenges of implementing the new consensus-based procedures with two translation review panels, one whose participants were born before the establishment of the one-child policy in China and one whose participants were born after—and which were assumed to have different communication and working styles.

This dissertation is among the first to develop a culturally-sensitive translation review procedure that is specific to reviewing English-to-Chinese translated test items in Chinese cultural contexts. The findings support the notion that, to be effective, test translation review procedures need to pay attention to the culturally-influenced forms of social interaction and decision-making styles of the panels of professionals with which they are to be used. Also, test developers should be aware of the significance of using culturally-sensitive translation review procedures to detect translation errors if they are to contribute to valid testing across cultures.

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