BECOMING AN INTERPRETER: ASSESSMENT AND SELF-ASSESSMENT IN UNTUTORED PRACTICE SESSIONS
Practice, needless to say, is of paramount importance in becoming a successful conference interpreter. As pointed out by numerous scholars, the acquisition of interpreting skills by trainees requires not only professional guidance during classes, but also extensive practice outside these hours. The effectiveness of practice sessions greatly depends on the studentsâ own assessment skills as well as on their peersâ ability to give meaningful feedback. While the feedback received in class from course trainers ranks first in terms of relevance and objectiveness, it also sets the standards of quantitative and qualitative assessment, giving trainees the cognitive and methodological tools they need in order to properly judge their performance and improve on their technique. This paper sets out to analyze, by the means of questionnaires submitted to conference interpreting trainees in six different EMCI programs, the way in which these assessment and self-assessment techniques are applied during untutored practice sessions as well as the overall efficiency of peer feedback. Furthermore, we shall also look into alternate methods of increasing the efficiency of practice sessions such as using standardized assessment grids like the ones that we conceived and tested during our own practice sessions, at the EMCI program in Cluj.
KEYWORDS: interpreter training, feedback, peer evaluation, self- assessment, group work