Assessing the Simultaneous Interpreting Outputs of Trainee Interpreters in Iraqi Departments of Translation


Trainee interpreters at Departments of Translation, University of Basrah in Iraq commit significant errors that have a negative impact on the transference of speakers' messages. These errors have not yet been systematically and comprehensively examined. The present study tries to investigate this particular area. To assess the outputs, he study was based on an eclectic model that was based on two related frameworks, namely Riccardi's (1999) and Na'ja and Abu-Mighnim's (2012). This model helps to diagnose discontinuities in terms of meaning, disfluencies, and syntactic errors in the outputs of a randomly selected sample, which consists of twenty-four fourth-year students in Department of Translation, college of Arts, University of Basrah. They were invited to take a 3 and half minutes simultaneous interpreting test. The material of this test was two culturally-related political speeches with a delivery rate of around 145 words per minute (145 WPM). The errors in the outputs were quantitatively and qualitatively analysed. To check the validity of the analysis, an independent jury of specialized tutors was asked to evaluate the same outputs. The results obtained from the analysis and the jury's evaluation prove that the outputs were full of errors that impacted the transferred meaning. Neither the trainees nor their tutors were aware of these errors. Therefore, a revision of and an improvement for the followed training programmes should be carried on to improve the status quo of Iraqi trainee interpreters graduating from Departments of Translation.