Training Interpreters to real interpreter-mediated interactions

On how to use authentic materials in authentic ways.

Led by Natacha Sarah Alexandra Niemants
This was a presentation on PhD research that looked at how to get students to have the experience of interactional authenticity. Often role-plays give situational authenticity, but don’t allow for the real authenticity of interaction to see how interpreters would really handle a situation.
So, the materials can’t just be authentic, but must have an activity that allows for students to be willing and able to react authentically.
Two things to prepare students:

  • Go as close as possible to authentic interaction
  • Or can have an interactional authenticity

Using Virtual Environments?

If student interpreters could interpret in Two Avatar actors in something like “Second Life” However, at this point, the focus seems to be making the virtual world look authentic, but the type of interactions are very inauthentic.

Conversation Analytic Role-Play Method by Stokoe

Use tapes or transcripts of rofessionals working in a talk-based institution.  The activity listens to the interaction until it comes to a certain challenge or issue in the text, and then the tape is paused. The student’s task is to try to react with what they think should come next.  Then, they can listen to the actual interaction and discuss the differences and see what implications this has for interpretation.
The analysis recognizes that in actual situations, sometimes interpreters will translate, or sometimes interpreters will do coordination such as turn-taking management.

Map Task in Interpreter Training

MapExercise
This task has one participant have a map with a route and another person have the map without the route.  And then can have interpreters interpret the information to another student.  This is a very different situation than interpreters would actually encounter, but leads to a more genuine type of interaction.

Start with Why

Start with Why
by Simon Sinek
Interpreters interpret for a reason because there is some communicate or social goal that needs to meet;  they do not simply wander upon two speakers shouting at each other in different languages and offer their services.
This quote and graphic was used to focus on the need to understand the pragmatics of a situation first before approaching the content and process.