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Test Development


These are typical frequently asked questions that may be useful to your organization:

What type of tests can you develop?
Translationlinks can develop any type of test that best suits your organization’s needs. The first step is understanding what you want to accomplish by testing. For instance, you may want to assess the level of an interpreter, a translator or a bilingual assistant you want to hire. You may also want to have your own staff be tested to determine their bilingual level in a specific language combination. Whatever your goal is, Translationlinks is here to help.

What type of sections can you include in my test?
It really depends on the candidate you want to test. We can customize tests to include as many sections as needed in order to reach your goals and maximize the results.

What type of questions can you include in my test?
Our OPE system currently offers the following question formats:
  • Vocabulary
  • Single option, multiple option, multiple order option
  • Listening and comprehension
  • Reading and comprehension
  • Sight translation
  • Written examination (translation)
  • Oral interview

How many language combinations can you test on? We can test on any major language. Just specified the language, the goals you want to achieve and we will prepare a quote for you.

What is the cost to take a test?
The costs vary depending on medical specialty, number of candidates to be tested and language combinations required.

How do I schedule a test?
Once you become a customer, you may access the system as an administrator and schedule tests or have our staff schedule them for you.

How do I view the results?
You can view test results. We currently offer a summarized report as well as a detailed report that shows every single question/answer and candidate’s entries. More reports can be customized depending on your organization’s needs.

Can you set a time limit on my test?
Not only can we set a time limit on your test, but we can also set time limits per question and per section. This is an optional feature that sometimes is not recommended. Again, it all depends on your testing goals.

How do I interpret the results?
Results can be interpreted on a per section basis. A report is provided for every test taken, indicating the score of the candidate. On the report you may view grades, problems and recommendations indicated by our evaluators.

Who is grading our tests?
Our evaluators are carefully chosen from different international associations. A minimum of 5 years experience in linguistics field (interpretation, translation and teaching) with strong medical background is required to be considered as an evaluator of Translationlinks' team.

Do you provide certifications?
We currently do not provide certifications. The benefit we offer is for your organization to make more intelligent choices when hiring an interpreter, translator or adding a bilingual staff member to your team.

Can you customize a test based on our needs and what would the cost be?
Yes, we can customize your test based on your organization's needs. The first step is to discuss what you want to accomplish with this particular test, who are the candidates you want to test, what languages you want to evaluate and what proficiency levels you want to achieve. After this analysis is conducted, we can provide you with a preliminary proposal. If the proposal is approved, a series of meetings will be required in order to develop the test (blueprint). Once the test is developed and approved by your team we proceed with a pilot phase in order to adjust the test to the level of your candidates and reach a grading scale that makes sense to your organization.
Test development fees will be provided along with our proposal. Once the test has been developed and approved you will have the option to access the system as an Administrator to control all testing activity, including scheduling and even grading or have our staff grade your tests for a small fee.


In order to plan for success, follow these simple guidelines that will allow you to visualize better your testing needs:

1) Prepare a document (test blueprint) that includes:
Main Purpose of the test (hiring, practice test, etc.)
Test domain (medical, human resources, etc.)
Test language(s) (Choose the language combinations needed to be tested).
Types of tasks to include in the test (Test vocabulary, memory retention, writing skills, medical specialty knowledge, etc.)
Choose resources (documents, forms, audio recordings or any element that will be required to create a particular section for the test).
Test grading (decide which metrics to be used to grade each section) For instance, a vocabulary section is not graded the same way as a Sight translation section.

2) Gather useful feedback from the test takers.
This can be considered a pilot phase or a pre-test prior to launching the official test. In this phase you can determine if the grading is suitable for the group you are testing (lowest and highest scores should be dropped in order to find a curve). Grading can be adjusted accordingly the level of your testing audience in order to meet your particular goals.

3) Prepare good instructions.
Each section should have clear instructions.

4) Test administration - choose a room that is quite and has fully equipped computers with internet access (remote oral interviews) and headsets/microphone in order to do the recorded portions of your test that later will be graded by evaluators.
In summary, test development is a process that includes three phases: design, operation and administration. The design phase provides you with a blueprint of the test, including all the components that will enable you to insure that the test tasks are in compliance and are applicable to the language use, and that the test scores are suitable for the intended purpose of the test. The operation phase allows you to write instructions and specifications procedures while the administration phase allows you to administer the test to a particular group of candidates, gather test results and analyze the results in order to make intelligent decisions for your organization.


We provide the following test development services:

1) Test design and development
We offer a full service design and development process. We will provide your organization with a blueprint of your test, help you gather the resources and customize the test to your audience level in any subject and language combination needed. For more information please fill out our Contact Form or call us at 1-888-878-2520.

2) Test validation
Weather it is your own test that you want to administer or one of ours, test validation is a crucial step to ensure the success of your results. We will validate all questions/answers and provide you with alternative options that best suit your audience. For more information please fill out our Contact Form or call us at 1-888-878-2520.

3) Test translation and cultural adaptation
We can customize a test, translate it and adapt it culturally depending on your language needs. We will also provide foreign language audio recording to add audio file resources to your test (Listening & Comprehension sections).
For more information please fill out our Contact Form or call us at 1-888-878-2520.

4) Test administration
We can grant you access to our OPE system after all your information has been compiled and integrated in the system. You will be able to schedule tests, view reports and more once you login as an Administrator.

For more information please fill out our Contact Form or call us at 1-888-878-2520.