Accurate, Meaningful and Culturally Relevant Translations: Quality Management within the 2020 Census Language Program – Hotchkiss
The 2020 Census language program is the most robust language program the U.S. Census Bureau has ever built. People could respond online or by phone in English and 12 non-English languages, and access video and print guides in 59 non-English languages (supporting over 99% of all U.S. households).
The program was committed to delivering high-quality non-English materials that were accurate, meaningful, and culturally relevant to respondents. To meet this goal, the program focused on quality management, building quality assurance into all project phases.
At the program level, the Census Bureau created a translation office to standardize the quality, style and terminology of all translations, hired professional translators, and implemented quality management processes based on project management best practices and translation industry standards.
At a project level, the Census Bureau developed clear translation project plans that included quality management and control. The Census Bureau used in-house staff and two contract vehicles to manage and control quality through editorial reviews, expert reviews, inspection and internal testing, and testing translations with recruited respondents of diverse demographics. This presentation will provide an overview of the 2020 Census language program, and discuss the processes, technology, and tools used by the Census Bureau to measure, assess, and ensure translation quality.
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