CALL FOR PAPERS - Special Issue on: Understanding Media Accessibility Quality: Theoretical and Experimental Approaches



Special Issue on: Understanding Media Accessibility quality: Theoretical and Experimental Approaches

Guest Editor: Gian Maria Greco, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain,

For a long time, Media Accessibility (MA) has focused on the development and implementation of accessible products and access services. Nevertheless, providing accessible products and access services is a necessary but not sufficient condition for guaranteeing accessibility. In order to have full accessibility, services and products should afford an experience of equitable quality to all users. Consequently, MA research has been recently shifting its focus to quality. Scholars have been developing quality models (e.g. Pedersen, 2017; Romero-Fresco & Pérez, 2015; Romero-Fresco & Pöchhacker, 2018), analysing quality in production practices (e.g. Robert & Remael, 2016), discussing the impact of machine translation on the quality of access services (e.g. Doherty & Kruger, 2018), just to name a few cases. The rise of quality as a major concern is also connected to the recent boost of reception studies within MA (Di Giovanni & Gambier, 2018). In order to investigate the quality of MA services and products, identify critical issues, and devise strategies for their solution, researchers have been increasingly conducting tests with end-users, especially using methods from experimental psychology. Moreover, in the past years, MA has moved from being strictly interpreted as concerning exclusively or mainly persons with disabilities to being considered as concerning access to media products, services, and environments for people that cannot, or cannot completely, access that content in its original form (Greco, 2016, 2018), thus opening up research and debate on quality in MA also to new access services (Jankowska, forthcoming).

Despite this dynamic situation, research on quality in MA is still highly fragmented, on some issues even episodic, with the vast majority focusing only on some specific aspects. Consequently, there is a need to place and discuss the various issues within a more general framework and analyse the correlation between the different aspects involved. The aim of this special issue is to encourage a harmonised discussion on quality in MA. The special issue welcomes papers discussing quality in MA from both a theoretical and a practical point of view. Yet, in order to facilitate a more consistent progress of the debate, papers with an exceedingly limited focus should be avoided. Consequently, papers mainly focusing on reception studies should not simply present experiments and report their results. They should also explicitly put them within the theoretical problem of quality and discuss how they contribute to address it. This holds true also for papers presenting specific quality models, e.g. for particular modalities, services or products. They should not simply present the model but also put it and discuss it within the aforementioned wider context.


Contributions might focus on, but should not be limited to:

  • Theoretical issues related to and the theoretical foundation of quality in MA
  • Holistic vs. modality-oriented approaches
  • Subjective vs. objective measures
  • The use of quality models from fields outside Translation Studies
  • Quality issues in specific services, products, and processes
  • Policies concerning quality (legislation, standards, and guidelines)
  • The use of specific technologies, e.g. machine learning
  • Experimental methods for the investigation of quality issues.

Important dates

Deadline for submission of papers: 15 April 2019.

Notification of acceptance to authors: 07 July 2019.

Deadline for submission of revised, final version of accepted papers: 10 August 2019.

Final publication: 15 November 2019.

Submission guidelines

Submissions should be strictly prepared according to the Author Guidelines available at Initial manuscripts must be exclusively submitted electronically through the journal’s online system at Upon submiting, select the section: "Special Issue 2019: Understanding Media Accessibility Quality".

Reviewing process

All papers should be prepared for double-blind review. No information on the authors should appear in the text. References to previous research and contributions by the authors of the paper should be duly anonymised by using the third person. Only papers that have passed double-blind review, screening by the guest editor and the journal’s editorial staff as well as fully and strictly comply with the Author Guidelines (including APA style) will be accepted. Contributions that have clearly not been language edited and that do not follow the style guide of the journal will be returned without review.

Open Access Policy and Publication fees

In accordance with the journal’s policy, all papers will be immediately published open access and free of charge.


The special issue is connected to the UMAQ project (MSCA 2017-2019, no. 752659):



Di Giovanni, E., & Gambier, Y. (2018). Introduction. In E. Di Giovanni & Y. Gambier (Eds.), Reception Studies and Audiovisual Translation (pp. VII-XII). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Doherty, S., & Kruger, J.-L. (2018). Assessing Quality in Human-and Machine-Generated Subtitles and Captions. In J. Moorkens, S. Castilho, F. Gaspari, & S. Doherty (Eds.), Translation Quality Assessment (pp. 179-197). Cham, Switzerland: Springer.

Greco, G. M. (2016). On Accessibility as a Human Right, with an Application to Media Accessibility. In A. Matamala & P. Orero (Eds.), Researching Audio Description. New Approaches (pp. 11-33). London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Greco, G. M. (2018). The nature of accessibility studies. Journal of Audiovisual Translation, 1(1), 205-232.

Jankowska, A. (forthcoming). Audiovisual Media Accessibility. In E. Angelone, M. Ehrensberger-Dow, & G. Massey (Eds.), The Bloomsbury Companion to Language Industry Studies. London: Bloomsbury Academic Publishing.

Pedersen, J. (2017). The FAR model: Assessing quality in interlingual subtitling. Journal of Specialised Translation(28), 210-229.

Robert, I., & Remael, A. (2016). Quality control in the subtitling industry: an exploratory survey study. Meta: Journal des traducteurs/Meta: Translators’ Journal, 61(3), 578-605.

Romero-Fresco, P., & Pérez, J. M. (2015). Accuracy rate in live subtitling: The NER model. In R. Baños Piñero & J. Díaz Cintas (Eds.), Audiovisual Translation in a Global Context (pp. 28-50). London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Romero-Fresco, P., & Pöchhacker, F. (2018). Quality assessment in interlingual live subtitling: The NTR Model. Linguistica Antverpiensia, New Series–Themes in Translation Studies, 16.