"What is important for him?"
Translation:Cos'è importante per lui?
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Strictly speaking "quale" means "which" rather than "what". But Italian and English usage do not exactly correspond.
In English, strictly speaking, you use "which" when you are asking about a specific item from a list of items. This "list" may be implicit rather than explicitly specified. For example, "Which tie should I wear today?" because I am choosing from among the list or set of ties that I own.
But in English, it is commonly acceptable in that situation to also say "What tie should I wear today".
More generally, English uses "what" when there is no list, and you are asking about the existence or nature of something. For example, "What is the meaning of life?"
The Italian "quale" and "che" can be used as pronouns or as adjectives/determiners before a singular or plural noun. In contrast, "che cosa" (or just "cosa") = "what" is used only as a pronoun. Compare "What is a necktie?"(pronoun) with "What necktie should I wear?" (adjective).
Note that if there is a plural noun immediately following, English can use either "which" or "what". For example, "what ties" or "which ties". But Italian will (almost?) always use "quale" before a following plural noun: What foods are tasty? = Quali cibi sono gustosi? That is because use of a plural noun almost always implies an underlying list or set.
What is the next question? = Qual è la prossima domanda?
In the English given first here, the "next" makes it clear that we are contemplating an underlying list or set of questions.
In the DL exercise here, we are given the English first. As usual with DL sentences, we are given no context, but I would say that "What is important for him?" is a general inquiry rather than a question about what he has chosen from a list. So "cosa" would be a good choice for the Italian translation.
On the other hand, if we had more context, and knew, for example, that we had given him a list of goals to accomplish in the new year, then we might well use "quale" in our Italian translation.