Training Interpreters and Translators in Spain’s Asylum and Refugee Office (OAR): A Case Study

Training Interpreters and Translators in Spain’s Asylum and Refugee Office (OAR): A Case Study

Carmen Valero Garcés[1]
University of Alcalá

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Abstract

The process of applying for asylum has been the primary focus of various legal studies and research programs. Numerous articles dealing with language and communication problems have recently emerged, revealing some of the adversities that interpreters and translators face when working in asylum and refugee settings. This study explores some of the issues and complexities surrounding the interpreting and translation services provided by the Spanish Asylum and Refugee Office (OAR). It also analyzes the experiences of several graduate students—and their respective mentors—during their time spent interning at the OAR. The conclusions drawn based on these experiences can act as a foundation for creating programs and activities geared toward training interpreters and translators to work with refugees and asylum seekers.
Keywords: interpreting, asylum seekers, training, internships

1.       Introduction and Background

The process of applying for asylum has been the primary focus of numerous studies and research programs with various objectives. According to Las Heras Navarro (2010) and Berry (1990), asylum seekers are oftentimes overlooked and face countless disadvantages within the realm of human migration. Nonetheless, this may be changing due to the strong impact that the so-called “refugee crisis”[2] is having on Europe and other countries worldwide, a crisis which started in 2015 and has led to a growing interest in research surrounding asylum issues (BBC, 2016).
Some studies focus on the language and communication problems that arise when refugees seek asylum, such as pioneering research conducted by Barsky (1993, 1996), which identifies the different roles that Canadian interpreters assume when dealing with asylum seekers. Watson (1998) analyzes these same topics as they pertain to Australian interpreters. Burnet and Peel (2001) explore the issues of interpreting for refugees in healthcare settings within the United Kingdom, and Pöllabauer (2004; 2005; 2006) analyzes matters of power and liability surrounding the roles of an interpreter. Inghilleri (2005) talks about the notion of the “habitus of interpreting” and its possible influence on asylum adjudication procedures. Maryns (2006) researches language issues that arise when interviewing refugees in Belgium. Benhaddou Handi (2003, 2006) explores culture clashes when interpreting for refugees who share the same language—in this case, Arabic—but come from completely different backgrounds. Pöchhacker and Kolb (2009) investigate the issues surrounding the accuracy of written and transcribed interview records. Crezee, Hayward, and Jülich (2013) examine the impactful experiences that interpreters may endure, emphasizing the need for providing interpreters with emotional support through debriefing sessions and post-interview counseling. Lastly, Tryuk (2014) explores ethical issues that are evident in the Asylum and Refugee Office in Warsaw, Poland. Many of these studies focus on asylum proceedings in which interpreters act as intermediaries. It is also worth noting that there has been a growing interest in analyzing psychotherapeutic treatments offered to refugees with the assistance of an interpreter (D’Ardenne, Ruaro, Cestari, Fakhoury, & Priebe, 2007; Miller, Martell, Pazdirek, Caruth, & Lopez, 2005; Tribe, 2002; Tribe & Keefe, 2009; Tribe & Lane, 2009; Tribe & Morrissey, 2004; Tribe, 2009).
In Spain, where the current study took place, research focusing on interpreting during asylum hearings is lacking. Nonetheless, a handful of concise studies focus on translation and interpreting for refugees in a general sense (Las Heras Navarro, 2010, 2012). Valero-Garcés and Cata (2006) discuss the Translation and Interpreting Services (in Spanish, Servicio de Traductores e Intérpretes [SETI]) offered by the Committee for the Defense of Refugees, Immigrants, and Those Granted Asylum in Spain (Comité de Defensa de los Refugiados, Asilados e Inmigrantes en el Estado Español). A doctoral dissertation has recently been completed regarding the role interpreting plays in the reception of immigrants and refugees in Spain (Adam, 2016).
The current study contributes to this literature by illuminating issues and complexities faced by interpreters who provide interpreting and translation services at the the Spanish Asylum and Refugee Office (Oficina de Asilo y Refugio [hereinafter referred to as the “OAR”]). The study gathered feedback from professional interpreters as well as graduate students fulfilling internship requirements, and their mentors on their experience, in the interest of using this feedback to improve the situated learning aspects of interpreting and translation training programs.

2.       The Spanish Asylum and Refugee Office

The Spanish Asylum and Refugee Office (OAR) is an administrative unit that is affiliated with the Directorate-General for Internal Policies and the Spanish Ministry of the Interior. Among other responsibilities, the OARassists asylum seekers in the process of applying for international protection. International protection is understood to be protection granted by a certain state or nation to refugees or other individuals in need, protecting them from their own national authorities. These individuals include refugees, any beneficiaries of subsidiary protection, displaced persons, and those who are stateless. The very nature of international protection requires the intervention of different professionals and bodies (interviewers, instructors, lawyers, police officers, social workers, interpreters, etc.), who usually use interpreting services in order to fulfill any assigned professional duties, which, according to current asylum regulations, include the following (Oficina de Asilo y Refugio, 2012):

  • Carrying out procedures involving the granting of asylum;
  • Supporting the Asylum and Refugee Interministerial Commission Secretariat (hereinafter the “CIAR”);
  • Notifying all individuals in question of the decisions regarding their applications;
  • Informing and giving advice to asylum seekers regarding any available social services;
  • Discussing rejected applications with the Ministry of the Interior;
  • Periodically reporting any rejected applications (and the criteria applied therein) to the CIAR;
  • Informing the CIAR of any possible consequences that may arise due to a rejected application; and
  • Providing the Spanish representative of the UN Refugee Agency with some statistics regarding asylum applications and refugees in Spain.

As set forth in Spanish Asylum Law 12/2009, dated 30 October (Ley de Asilo 12/2009 de 30 de octubre), some of the other responsibilities of the OAR include:

  • Processing applications regarding family outreach protection;
  • Initiating proceedings to stop or revoke any previously granted international protection;
  • Starting the processing of applications for stateless individuals, managing the cases in question, and presenting the Ministry of the Interior with any motions for resolutions that have been duly substantiated and personalized through the General Directorate of Foreign Nationals and Immigration;
  • Monitoring and ensuring that the appropriate bodies issue any documents and certificates to the stateless individuals that would otherwise be issued to them by or through their corresponding national authorities; and
  • Initiating the appropriate steps that should be taken were the “stateless” status to be revoked or terminated.

The aforementioned responsibilities provide a general idea of the knowledge that is required of interpreters and translators—mainly, legal and terminological understanding—as well as the key roles they play when it comes to asylum applications. With regard to the application process, the following excerpt, which was taken from the official asylum application brochure, provides a snapshot of some of the complexities that interpreters face when interpreting in these contexts, given the varying applicant profiles, the complexity of the interviews, and the lack of background information:

You (the applicant) must submit an application in person.[3] If you cannot do this for physical or legal reasons, you may authorize another person do so on your behalf. You will have to attend an interview in which you must answer a set of questions regarding your personal information, and in which you explain all the reasons for which you are applying for international protection and how you arrived in Spain. The interview will be conducted by a manager who will tell you what to do and help you to complete it in order to establish all the relevant facts.

Translators and interpreters in Spain face circumstances that in addition heavy workloads, include limited possibilities of becoming permanent members of staff. Agreements regarding the official positions or titles of these professions are nonexistent, and there are translators who have had to work for several years before finally being hired permanently. Others, however, continue to be hired temporarily for small amounts of time through agreements with NGOs. Some of these NGOs provide interpreters who oftentimes have no formal training and who have learned Spanish as a second—or even third—language. In addition to translation agency staff, there are currently translators who are subcontracted by the government. Benhaddou Handi (2006) describes these types of workers below:

Every now and then, the people in charge of coordinating and managing translators are unfamiliar with the world of translation and the specificities surrounding the profession. The professional prerequisites that are implemented when selecting said translators are either nonexistent or insufficient. What matters is that the interpreter is able to speak several languages, available at any time, and satisfied with the agreed-upon payment with the company. (p. 33)

As Benhaddou Handi (2006) states, “Speaking two languages is not enough to work as an interpreter, just as much as owning a certain uniform or carrying around a weapon does not make one a police officer” (p. 33). However, some progress concerning the recognition of the importance of the work of translators and interpreters has been made, following the implementation of Directive 2010/64/EU (dated 20 October) on the right to interpretation and translation in criminal proceedings and the need to create a registry, which was adopted by the European Parliament and the Council. The discussion under the title ‘Training and testing in PSIT’ which took place during the conference Public Service Interpreting and Translation (PSIT): Training, Testing and Accreditation/ Traducción E Interpretación en los Servicios Públicos (TISP): Formación, Evaluación y Acreditación at the University of Alcalá (Valero-Garcés, 2016) provides evidence regarding this.
 

3.       The Study: Participants, Method and Data

A combination of an ethnographic approach and discourse analysis was adopted in this study (see Hale & Napier, 2013, on methods in interpreting research). All collected data came from interviews conducted with professional interpreters and trainers (n = 4) at the OAR, as well as from reports written by graduate student in the MA program in Intercultural Communication, Public Service Interpreting and Translation (n = 8) at the University of Alcalá, who were interns at the OAR during the 2012–2013 and 2013–2014 academic years. Students begin the internship part of their program, which consists of 150 hours, after having completed approximately 400 classroom hours. Two mentors, an academic and an institutional adviser, monitor their progress. The mentors work together when carrying out their duties and each submits a report about the student according to the established protocol. The internship is worth 5 ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) out of a total of 60 ECTS credits and is currently equivalent to 100-125 working hours for the student. (See Valero-Garcés, 2010, for more information on interpreting internship development.)
The professional interpreters interviewed—who were also the students’ mentors—were in-house interpreters and translators that the Spanish Ministry of the Interior provides to asylum seekers. Their language pairs were English, French, Arabic, and Russian. All of them had a higher education degree and/or had received training in translation and interpreting. They also had experience (3–4 years) and were familiar with the varying responsibilities of the OAR and the main aspects of international protection. They were presented with open-ended questions based on the key features surrounding interpreting and translation (I&T) as a profession. Students’ language combinations with Spanish were three with Arabic, three with English, and two with French. The students’ internship reports and responses were based on a standard template.

4.       The Voice of Professional Interpreters: Training Requirements

The interviews used for this study were conducted in person and contained open-ended questions regarding the key features surrounding I&T at the OAR, the roles assumed by interpreters and translators who assist asylum seekers and refugees, and the type of training that these professionals should receive in order to efficiently render their services. The duration of interviews ranged between 30 and 45 minutes and they were conducted one to one. Because participants gave similar answers, the following comments focus mainly on those aspects they deemed most crucial when training for their profession and exercising their duties.
The first key point they emphasized was the level of precision for translating and interpreting required by the OAR. According to the professionals who were interviewed, a high command of the working languages is imperative, including knowledge of varying dialects, registers, and specialized and colloquial vocabulary. One of these professional interpreters states the following:[4]

The Asylum and Refugee Office is more than my workplace; it is my university and training center. In my opinion, a great interpreter is made through work experience and not just through diplomas or degrees. … University graduates are qualified to exercise their acquired abilities, but it is impossible to wait for there to be academic degrees in every single language and dialect. (Professional Comment 1)

This comment brings to the fore the neverending debate about the distance between academia, society and the real market (Krause, 2017).
The second key point the OAR interpreters emphasized was that interpreters and translators should be prepared to deal with a variety documents and texts types. According to statistics gathered in 2009, more than 61% of asylum and refugee applicants were unable to provide documentation proving their nationality or supporting their claims (Handi & Ortigosa, 2011). The interviewees also emphasized that those seeking international protection must undergo different interviews in which they carefully describe their own accounts leading up to the situation in which they currently find themselves. The applicants must also provide any personal information and travel plans, in addition to responding to questionnaires regarding their nationality and the motives for leaving their country.
The third significant point that was mentioned was the role of the interpreter or translator when forming part of a team that handles asylum seekers. Generally, a group of professionals takes part in the proceedings dealing with foreigners: civil servants, police officers, judges, lawyers, NGO members, healthcare professionals, and social workers. Professional interpreters and translators play significant roles in conveying messages that make communication possible, allowing foreign nationals and all other parties involved to understand one another.
The fourth noteworthy point mentioned was the interviews and the manner in which they were conducted. Interviews constitute the backbone of the asylum application process, and the interpreter’s role is of the utmost importance in cases in which the foreign national does not speak Spanish. Nonetheless, there is no particular type of interview or interviewee. Every individual has their own story, and they may belong to a different cultural group—even within the same language community (Robles Peña, & Russell, 2016). This demonstrates the importance of cultural nuances and the need for occasional interventions in order to facilitate communication (Maryns, 2006). If there is one thing that those being interviewed have in common, however, it is the adversities they have faced and their desire to find some type of resolution. This requires the interpreter to be psychologically prepared in order to render their services in an unbiased manner.
The fifth point highlighted was the need for both translation and interpreting services. Both professions are of paramount importance to the asylum process and require extensive training and experience. In addition to dealing with a wide range of proceedings throughout the asylum and refugee-seeking processes, translators and interpreters must be able to adapt to the workplace. Aside from interpreting, other responsibilities include the following:

  • Formalizing asylum applications during the initial interviews with social workers;
  • Participating with trainers in in-depth interviews that vary according to geographic location;
  • Issuing and renewing documents, in addition to answering questions that arise regarding the verification of any records;
  • Providing customer service and public information;
  • Registering incoming and outgoing documents;
  • Informing applicants of any social benefits or aid, in addition to referring them to reception centers;
  • Acting as a liaison over the telephone (when contact is made with applicants or other fellow professionals);
  • Assisting in fingerprinting processes and police station referrals; and
  • Translating a range of documents (criminal background checks, identity cards and documents, birth and wedding certificates, medical reports, court rulings, legal notices, police reports, press releases [that relate to the applicant], and informational brochures published by the OAR). The types of documents that are translated vary in nature and include original texts, copies, faxed documents, handwritten or typed copies, and documents that are both legible and illegible.

Last, the professionals that were interviewed emphasized the need for continuous and interdisciplinary training. This is paramount in and interpreters’ ability to adequately assist asylum seekers and staff members, given that this profession deals with a wide range of matters and various fields including linguistics, sociology, psychology, and humanities. Interpreters are constantly faced with new challenges and must actively train, in addition to being aware of current events.

5.       The Voice of Future Translators and Interpreters

All feedback from the eight student interns at the OAR was gathered from the reports the students wrote. The reports were divided into two parts and based on a standard template that was created by the university, subsequently adapted to each degree of study (Appendix 1). The first part of the report dealt with academic matters, whereas the second part focused on the development of professional skills needed for the job market. Students were required to finish the report and turn it in upon successful completion of their internship program. Ethical approval was mandatory for the students and the institutions in which they interned.
The academic portion of the report focused on the assignments that interns were given, in addition to their corresponding levels of satisfaction. According to students’ responses, they were asked to undertake the following types of assignments:

  • Translations and back-translations of various documents (asylum requests, letters of allegation, forms, etc.);
  • Bilateral interpreting while providing customer service and assisting the police during formalized interviews and interviews with trainers; and
  • Providing support to OAR users and staff members.

These assignments coincided with the comments made by professionals regarding the need for translators and interpreters to deal with a variety of documents and text types and assisting with paperwork. The following comments demonstrate the students’ levels of satisfaction not only academically, but also on a personal level:[5]

Despite certain drawbacks, I must say that I loved the experience. The work that is done in this office is impressive, and we should never forget that we are dealing with people who find themselves in difficult situations and, in some cases, have physical and/or psychological problems. We also have to take into account the fact that these people do not speak the official language of the receiving country and, in many cases, do not have the financial means to support themselves within the country. (Student Comment 1)

This internship experience allowed me to gain confidence in myself and in my work. In effect, we had to complete various assignments, and the staff members who assigned us these tasks trusted us completely, giving us more confidence in ourselves. This internship has also helped me feel more comfortable when interpreting, being that I had no prior experience (most of my classmates studied translation and interpreting and already had some type of foundation). (Student Comment 2)

Interpreting is no longer a challenge for me, but rather a task that I feel I am able to carry out just as well as translation. The internship experience at the Asylum and Refugee Office has helped me, above all, to gain firsthand experience as to how working in a field that deals with refugees operates. (Student Comment 3)

The above comments also coincide with the voice of the professional interpreters’ about the need for experience outside the classroom. The first student talks about people coming from different places; the second student talks about gaining confidence in herself through the difficult task she had to perform – including both translating and interpreting. The third student expresses satisfaction at having the chance to gain initial experience in a specific context. All these comments suggest that prospective translators and interpreters must also be trained in areas that go beyond simply conveying information between service providers and users, as some training programs might do.
The second part of the students’ reports regarding their professional experience brought to light several challenges. Due to the limited scope of this article, only the most pertinent challenges have been analyzed, followed by different student responses:
Students highlighted the importance of being aware of cultural nuances when working in the OAR:

I have learned a lot of things, one of the most important being vocabulary and how to document translations. In order to be an interpreter in this type of place or situation, simply knowing another language is not enough. The interpreter must act as a mediator and truly learn the manner in which the applicant speaks and expresses themselves in accordance with their culture. (Student Comment 4)

Based on this student’s experience, the conclusion that can be drawn is that interpreters must take on the roles of mediators in certain situations.
Student comments included the need to develop communication skills:

Customer service is a daily responsibility at the Asylum and Refugee Office that requires high levels of communication skills including providing service to the general public, adapting to the social and cultural level of the people involved, and having patience. (Student Comment 5)

This clearly demonstrates that interpreters must hone their communication skills in order to interact and work well with different groups and users.
Student comments also reflected the diverse profile of applicants:

Contact is made with people who are very different. Interpreters must learn how to familiarize themselves with—and adapt to—the manner in which users express themselves according to their cultures. For example, I had to act as an interpreter for an Iranian refugee in the United Kingdom who was asking about humanitarian relief in Spain. I also interpreted for another man from Tehran and three Nigerian applicants. (Student Comment 6)

Comment 7 ties in with Comment 6 in that they both emphasize the need for developing the skills that allow interpreters to communicate in multilingual settings. The professional interpreters who were interviewed also considered this of paramount importance.
Students also commented on the need for knowledge of asylum, procedures, protocols, and reports required by law:

The subject that has helped me the most in undertaking this internship has been the interpreting course, within both the medical and legal fields. Acting as an interpreter for refugees requires insight into different laws. In other words, having overall knowledge regarding the legal framework concerning asylum, statelessness, and the manners in which to seek international protection in Spain is imperative. (Student Comment 7)

This student’s comment highlights the need for some type of legal background work and knowledge of protocols, coinciding with statements made by the professionals during the interviews.
Students commented on the importance of translation as a common task in the OAR setting:

Translating was a common task and included a variety of texts. One such example was a text titled “A Ruling Made by the Court of Peace of the Democratic Republic of Congo.” This was not very difficult, as we had seen very similar texts in class. Other types of documents included user guides, e-mails, UN Refugee Agency surveys, and personal accounts given by asylum seekers. The most difficult thing was that a few handwritten words were illegible. (Student Comment 8)

As the student claims, translating tasks were frequently assigned, including a variety of texts and modes such as back-translations, revisions, editing, and sight translations. These comments are useful to interpreter educators and may serve as a reminder to implement components of translation into the curriculum of programs that prepare students to work as interpreters in asylum and refugee settings.
The importance of multidisciplinarity and teamwork were highlighted as essential skills:

The interviews with social workers are much calmer and less stressful than interpreting, both within the booths and during legal proceedings. Being aware of the characteristics and intricacies of each type of situation when it comes to interpreting for asylum seekers is imperative; over-the-counter interpreting should not be conducted in the same manner as interpreting during a pretrial interview, and it is important to take this distinction well into consideration. (Student Comment 9)

This demonstrates the importance of teamwork and the ability to work with different professionals forming part of a group, including interviewers, instructors, lawyers, police officers, social workers, and other interpreters. This is essential in order to complete any assigned tasks and be aware of the differences among the various roles and responsibilities that these professionals assume. Students also commented on the importance of adhering to the Code of Ethics of the Libro Blanco de la traducción y la interpretación institucional (White Paper on Institutional Translation and Interpreting; Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores, 2012).
The following comments highlight different situations in which students recognize the importance of abiding by a code of ethics and good practice, an example of which is in the Libro Blanco de la traducción y la interpretación institucional):

Maintaining one’s composure is paramount in order to listen to and respect all of the personal accounts that are being told without any parallel trials, regardless of whether or not these stories are true, consistent, or quite the contrary. (Student Comment 10)

It is surprising to observe the level of confidence and stability that the presence of an interpreter represents for applicants, although I feel it necessary to note that not all of these applicants are completely trusting and sometimes blame the interpreter if they are not granted asylum. (Student Comment 11)

These comments demonstrate the students’ awareness of the principles of impartiality and confidentiality. The following comment mentions the mandatory agreement that is signed by the institution and the university, which ensures professional secrecy and confidentiality with regard to any events that occur in the workplace:

As I was required to sign a confidentiality agreement in order to intern, the documents that needed to be translated were not allowed to be taken out of the office. As a result, I had to manage my time in order to translate all of the pages within the number of days that the internship lasted. (Student Comment 12)

In line with previous studies such as those of Lai, Heydon, and Mulayim, (2015); Crezee, Crezee, Hayward, and Jülich (2013; and Valero-Garcés (2005), students commented on the need for psychological support:

Working at the OAR can be psychologically difficult. The people who seek asylum and international protection have usually experienced very moving situations that they describe in some of the texts that we are required to translate. Because of this, I think that some support options should be included in the training if the interpreter is required to work in traumatic settings. (Student Comment 13)

Overall, students felt that there was a need for training to help them handle the stories that are told by asylum seekers. Students requested that certain strategies geared toward coping with the psychological impacts of interpreting be included in the academic curriculum or as part of the training sessions. As one student states, “It would be interesting to learn relaxation techniques in order to unwind from work once the interpretation has concluded,” which was an aspect that was also mentioned by Crezee et al. (2013).
Another recurring topic within the realm of public service interpreting and translation literature worth mentioning is that of an overall lack of appreciation and recognition of the role of an interpreter—as evidenced in the following comments:

Very little attention was received from staff members, other than the mentor and the police officer. (Student Comment 14)

I must mention that there were several unproductive days due to the office employees claiming that there was very little to do or that they simply “had not remembered” to call us in. (Student Comment 15)

Due to several of the office workers’ lack of interest, many interviewers did not call us in to participate in the interviews, and neither did the instructors. (Student Comment 16)

As the above comments show, overall, OAR employees demonstrated a general lack of interest in—or complete unawareness of—the presence and needs of the interpreters. This was a missed opportunity for both students and employees, as they were unable to take full advantage of what the other had to offer. Ultimately, training OAR staff members to work with interpreters and translators is a task that has yet to be undertaken.

6.       Conclusion: Lessons from the Field

This study has outlined the experiences of student interns—and their respective mentors—while interning at the OAR. The OAR’s main responsibilities are also described in order to contextualize the analysis. Some of the issues that interpreters and translators encounter in asylum and refugee settings were revealed in the overall feedback that was received.
Most students agreed that the internships allowed them to gain firsthand experience in dealing with foreign nationals. Nonetheless, students must be aware of cultural nuances, varying applicant profiles, and different language accents. Some of the challenges that students mentioned included becoming familiar with the specific asylum procedures and protocols pursuant to the law, in addition to learning of the significant role that an interpreter assumes during an interview. Other obstacles included having to adhere to a code of ethics, remaining unbiased, and seeking psychological support after hearing the details of different applicants’ traumatic experiences.
Aside from such difficulties, students highlighted the fact that they were able to gain experience while working as an interpreter and translator in a professional setting. Although they did simulations in class, students mentioned that role-playing with their classmates was not the same as interpreting for someone who actually depended on them to make steadfast decisions and communicate in an accurate manner. Students saw the translation work assigned by the institutions as a perfect way to exercise the skills they acquired during their studies. In turn, they were able to develop their organizational skills when faced with lengthy translations and more specialized topics than those dealt with in class.
Overall, the findings of this study revealed the strengths and weaknesses of the internship program, and the feedback that was received will be used to make improvements to it. Some of the suggestions made by both students and mentors will be put into effect and incorporated into future courses of study, including role-plays based on true events, translations of texts similar to those received at the OAR, and an introduction to relaxation techniques that help reduce work-induced stress.
Although this study is based on a relatively small sample of respondents, the responses provide firsthand accounts of what transpires in situated learning settings outside of the classroom from the perspectives of PSIT students, internship mentors, and OAR staff members. Furthermore, the findings may be of use to educators in other countries who are involved in interpreting programs that aim to prepare students to work in asylum and refugee settings.

Acknowledgments

This study was made possible thanks to the educational cooperation agreement signed by the Spanish Home Office and the Master’s Degree Program in Intercultural Communication, Public Service Interpreting and Translation (MICPSIT) offered at the University of Alcalá in Madrid.[6] I would also like to thank the reviewers and editors for their helpful comments, which assisted in the revision of this paper.

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Appendix 1

Memoria Final de las Prácticas del Estudiante
 
1) Informe general

  1. DATOS PERSONALES DEL ALUMNO

 

Apellidos:
Nombre: e-mail:
D.N.I.: Teléfono: Fecha de Nacimiento:
       Titulación en curso:

 

  1. DATOS DE LA ENTIDAD COLABORADORA
Entidad colaboradora (empresa, institución, etc.):
Departamento/ Área:
Fecha Inicio: Fecha Fin:
Días a la semana: Horas al día:

 

Dirección de la empresa donde realizas las prácticas:
Responsable directo en la empresa:

 

  1. DESCRIPCIÓN CONCRETA DE LAS TAREAS DE LA PRÁCTICA

 
3.1 (a) Marca en la lista de abajo las funciones y tareas generales realizadas:

Análisis de documentos
Elaboración de glosarios
Interpretación y/o Mediación
Investigación
Redacción de documentos
Tareas formativas
Traducción
Otras (especificar):_______________________

 
3.1 (b) Marca en la lista de abajo el ámbito de las tareas realizadas:

Sanitario
Educativo
Jurídico-administrativo
Social
Cultural
Empresa de traducción
Asociación relacionada con la traducción
Otro (especificar):____________________________

 
3.1 (c) Descripción concreta y detallada de las tareas desarrolladas y de los departamentos en los que has estado asignado:
3.2. Valoración de las tareas desarrolladas con los conocimientos y competencias adquiridos en relación con los estudios universitarios:
 

  1. Relación de problemas planteados y el procedimiento seguido para su resolución:

 

  1. Identificación de las aportaciones que en materia de aprendizaje, han supuesto las prácticas:

 

  1. Aportación de las prácticas a la sociedad e identificación de aprendizajes relacionados con el papel del puesto desempeñado en la misma:
  2. De las principales competencias para el empleo que solicitan las empresas a la hora de contratar a los titulados universitarios se encuentran las siguientes. Señala y argumenta aquellas que hayas desarrollado en el transcurso de tu práctica de 1 a 5:
COMPETENCIA/ CAPACIDAD 1 2 3 4 5
CAPACIDAD TÉCNICA
CAPACIDAD DE APRENDIZAJE
ADMINISTRACIÓN DE TRABAJOS
HABILIDADES DE COMUNICACIÓN ORAL
HABILIDADES DE COMUNICACIÓN ESCRITA
SENTIDO DE LA RESPONSABILIDAD
FACILIDAD DE ADAPTACIÓN
CREATIVIDAD E INICIATIVA
IMPLICACIÓN PERSONAL
MOTIVACIÓN
RECEPTIVIDAD A LAS CRÍTICAS
PUNTUALIDAD
RELACIONES CON SU ENTORNO LABORAL
CAPACIDAD DE TRABAJO EN EQUIPO
NIVEL DE IDIOMA (Indique cual)
CONOCIMIENTO DE LA CULTURA DE OTROS PAÍSES
OTRA:
OTRA:
OTRA:

 
[1] Correspondence to: carmen.valero@uah.es
[2] See “Refugee Crisis in Europe” available at http://ec.europa.eu/echo/refugee-crisis_en.
4 See http://www.interior.gob.es/web/servicios-al-ciudadano/extranjeria/asilo-y-refugio/presentacion-de-la-solicitud for more information.
[4] All respondents answered in Spanish and the answers have been translated into English literally and in a simple manner, omitting transcription symbols.
[5] Students’ names have been omitted for confidentiality purposes. The answers were in Spanish, and they have been translated into English as accurately as possible.
[6] See http://www3.uah.es/master-tisp-uah for more information on the Master’s Degree Program in Intercultural Communication, Public Service Interpreting and Translation.