DQF-MQM error typology

DQF-MQM error typology

At CLEAR Global / Translators without Borders we assess quality using the harmonized Dynamic Quality Framework - Multidimensional Quality Metrics (DQF-MQM) error typology.

This is a translation industry standard based on TAUS’s Dynamic Quality Framework (DQF) and on EU’s Multidimensional Quality Metrics (MQM). These two standards were developed separately and harmonized into one general standard that we use today.

We use a simplified version of this error typology with five error categories. Each category includes specific issues that should be considered when we work on a project.


What do we check? Example of issues
Accuracy Are we communicating the meaning of the original text correctly and precisely? Added or omitted information, mistranslated text with changed meaning.
Fluency Does the translation follow the standard spelling, punctuation, and grammar? Issues with spelling, punctuation, grammar, and register, that impact understanding.
Terminology Are keywords and phrases translated accurately and in a consistent manner? Use of inappropriate words for the field, domain or topic. Not following the glossary.
Style Does the translation sound natural and is it appropriate for the readers? Text that can be difficult to understand easily on first reading. The style of the translation does not match the style of the source.
Design Is the translation formatted appropriately? Issues with the length of the translation, its format, or conventions applied.


Potential issues are scored in penalty points according to their severity. There are also two markers that do not penalize the target text, but rather have a special function.

Critical Has a significant impact and may cause severe implications.
Major Has a considerable impact and may confuse or mislead the reader.
Minor Has a slight impact; does not cause loss of meaning nor confuse the reader.
Neutral Used to flag problems or need for changes that are not considered errors, for example preferred stylistic changes. No penalty associated.
Kudos Praise for exceptional work. No penalty associated.

We have prepared more detailed information on how to assess issues in each category. You can access them via the links below:

:thought_balloon: Do you have comments or suggestions on this? Join the discussion happening here :speech_balloon:


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