The Effect of National Identity and Cognitive Abilities on Translators’ Fixation Counts

An Eye-tracking Experiment


  • Mina Mirzaee 📧 Ph.D. Candidate, Department of English Translation Studies, Faculty of Persian Literature and Foreign Languages, Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran
  • Fatemeh Parham Assistant Professor, Department of English Translation Studies, Faculty of Persian Literature and Foreign Languages, Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran


The current paper investigates the potential effect of national identity and cognitive abilities on translators’ mental effort. To this end, an eye-tracking study was conducted to explore how individuals’ mental effort varied based on their national identity and cognitive abilities when instructed to translate according to IRIB standards. To do this, eight participants were recruited to carry out ten tasks, requiring the translation of ideologically-loaded texts. The experiment was performed in the Cognitive Laboratory of the University of Tehran in Iran. The mental effort of the participants was assessed by measuring their fixations counts, a commonly used eye-tracking metric derived from their performance while translating. Upon completion, the participants were given two questionnaires, measuring their national identity and cognitive abilities. The results indicated that the participants’ national identity and cognitive abilities affect their fixation counts which represent their mental effort. In other words, a positive correlation was observed between the scores of national identity and cognitive abilities, where higher scores contributed to increased mental effort. This denotes that the translators’ mental effort decreased when asked to translate against their national identity.


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How to Cite

Mirzaee, M., & Parham, F. (2024). The Effect of National Identity and Cognitive Abilities on Translators’ Fixation Counts: An Eye-tracking Experiment . Iranian Journal of Translation Studies, 22(85). Retrieved from