[New publication] The Interpreter and Translator Trainer: 13 (2), 2019

The Interpreter and Translator Trainer: 13 (2), 2019

Link: https://www.tandfonline.com/toc/ritt20/current


Interpreter performance in police interviews. Differences between trained interpreters and untrained bilinguals, by Sandra Hale, Jane Goodman-Delahunty and Natalie Martschuk

Abstract: In most countries, it is not compulsory to be trained to work as an interpreter in community settings. A comparison across jurisdictions reveals that different requirements exist, from a simple self-evaluation of language competence, to passing a certification or accreditation test. Even in countries where certification or accreditation systems exist, such as the USA and Australia, there is no legislation to prevent any bilingual from working as interpreter. In legal settings, this situation has led to a lack of clear guidelines regarding interpreter recruitment, and to many examples of incompetent interpreting that have impacted legal outcomes. Little research has been conducted to systematically assess the value of training on interpreter performance. This paper presents results of a live experimental study conducted in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, showing significant differences between the performance of trained interpreters and untrained bilinguals in simulated police interviews. The study is one of a few to compare performance based on interpreter background, using a large sample and a sophisticated method to assess performance.


Student resistance in a literary translation classroom: a study within an instructional conversion experience from a transmissionist approach to a transformationist one, by Shahrzad Parvaresh, Hossein Pirnajmuddin and Akbar Hesabi

Abstract: While enacting innovative learner-centered practices has been reported to instigate, at least initially, student negative responses in diverse contexts, studies in translation education adhering to teaching approaches informed by social-constructivism have paid no great attention to student resistance, as one potential threatening factor, in response to the newly employed approaches. This study aims at addressing this under-researched but important aspect in the design, development, and implementation process. In a course redesign plan aimed at advancing towards a learner-centered approach in the course literary translation, we found student resistance as one major threat to the plan’s ultimate success. Although attempts were made to anticipate student resistance and enact several prevention strategies, by mid-semester we found the majority of the students still resistant. An investigation into student resistance types and sources revealed that the majority of the students did not perceive the problem as being instructor-owned. Data collected through the questionnaire on students’ characteristics alongside follow-up interviews highlighted students’ lack of motivation as one important variable worth investigating in the first place. Results from the analysis of motivational factors better justified student resistance. Implications were discussed in the light of the relevant literature for our pedagogical purposes in the upcoming semester.


Information-seeking behaviour of translation students at the University of Silesia during legal translation – an empirical investigation, by Joanna Sycz-Opoń

Abstract: This article presents the results of an investigation into information-seeking behaviour of trainee translators, observed during translation of a legal text from English into Polish. The translator’s workspace has significantly changed over the last twenty years. Now translators have at their disposal not only traditional printed publications but also a variety of sources available in an electronic form. The study presented in this article aims to discover how this repertoire of available sources is utilized during a specific task – legal translation. The group under scrutiny are the students of a translation programme at the University of Silesia, Poland. The method of investigation combines observation and think-aloud protocol. The results obtained show, among others, the information most often looked-up in sources, the sources most often consulted, the level of satisfaction with source consultation, the reasons for non-satisfaction, and the problems commonly encountered during the search for information. The article ends with the list of characteristic information-seeking behaviours exhibited by the group in question.


Interpreting quality as evaluated by peer students, by Wei Su

Abstract: This paper examines how interpreting quality is evaluated by peer students in an English-Chinese simultaneous interpreting class. In the study, 18 students received training on how to evaluate interpreting based on three quality components: accuracy, presentation and target language quality. Then, they were asked to evaluate three translation samples by their peers and to provide comments based on the three components. After examining the collected peer comments, this paper found that there were quantitative and qualitative differences across the three components. Quantitatively speaking, peer students tended to give more comments on grammar in TL quality and fluency in presentation. Qualitatively speaking, peer students tended to give more in-depth evaluation to substitution in accuracy. The research suggests that while some easy-to-spot quality components like TL grammar may receive more peer comments, other components like substitution may stimulate peer evaluators’ reflective thinking and thus should be stressed in the teaching of interpreting.


Implementing project-based learning in a Persian translation class: a mixed-methods study, by Mahboubeh Moghaddas and Masood Khoshsaligheh

Abstract: The present study aimed to investigate the effectiveness of Project-based learning (PjBL) in the Iranian context in an English-Persian translation class. Therefore, a project-based translation treatment was implemented to a course on advanced translation in a class of 21 students at a university in Iran. The study qualitatively investigated how students’ attitudes toward the treatment differed before and after the treatment and how PjBL was practically implemented. The improvement of students’ critical thinking, their attitudes toward their teamwork performance, and their translation quality were quantitatively examined. The data regarding the students’ attitudes were obtained through focus group interviews before and after the treatment as well as participant observations and audio-recordings. The improvement of the students’ critical thinking abilities, their attitudes toward their teamwork performance, and their translation quality were examined through a pre- and post-treatment model. The findings of the study indicated that the students’ attitudes toward the treatment were generally positive, not only before but also after the treatment, although certain challenges of applying PjBL in the Iranian context were observed. Empirical evidence indicated an improvement of the students’ translation quality, some of their critical thinking abilities as well as a few of their teamwork skills.