What’s the Difference Between a LocQA Tester and a Proofreader?

By Hagen Weiss

There’s often confusion between the role of a localization quality assurance (LocQA) tester and a proofreader. Both play key roles in ensuring your final translation is accurate error-free. However, the two roles are different. Understanding the differences between them will give you a better appreciation for the entire QA process of your app/game.

LocQA Tester and Proofreader

What is a LocQA Tester and Proofreader?

Nobody is perfect. Even the best translators can make simple grammatical errors or typos. That’s why you need a proofreader.

A proofreader acts as the last line of defense on translations. They check for things like:

  • Typos
  • Spelling corrections
  • Missing text
  • Grammatical errors
  • Minor formatting issues

As mentioned, proofreading is typically the last stage of the translation process. The translator will first translate the document. The translated document gets sent to an editor to check for any mistranslations or misinterpretations. Finally, the document goes to the proofreader who checks for the typos and grammatical errors.

Proofreaders generally do not add any additional meaning to the translation (that is the job of the translator/editor). Their role is to simply clean up all the final mistakes and ensure the document looks tidy and professional.

What is a LocQA Tester?

Where a proofreader is typically isolated from the game/app interface, a LocQA tester has a full picture view of the final product. A LocQA tester goes beyond checking for things like grammar or spelling errors. They take into account factors, such as context, user experience, and cultural nuances when analyzing the product.

A LocQA tester will look for three things in their QA process.

1. Linguistic Testing

Linguistic testing involves checking for language-related problems in the context of the intended market. For example, the LocQA tester will check to ensure idioms and phrases are all culturally appropriate. They’ll also make sure date formatting, currency, and measurement units are correct and consistent.

2. Cosmetic Testing

A LocQA tester will also do a visual check on the product. A visual check involves assessing whether images are localized properly. It also involves checking for truncated text due to the translations. Additionally, font sizes need to be optimized and consistent. Essentially any visual aspect impacting the quality of the user experience will undergo checking.

3. Functional Testing

Functional testing looks for potential bugs or engineering-related problems relating to the localization of the product. Issues like whether links point back to the appropriate pages, forms and error messages are displaying as they should, and more. The LocQA tester will ensure the localized versions are consistent with the original. They’ll note overall game performance, audio quality, and text strings in their functional testing.

iGlobe Proofreading & LocQA Services

As you can see, both proofreading and LocQA is necessary for a polished product. Proofreading is crucial, so your translation is free from grammatical and formatting errors. LocQA testing is required to ensure the entirety of your product is localized appropriately.

iGlobe offers premium proofreading and LocQA services to a variety of business industries. Contact us for more information on how we can help you with your next project!


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