Quality assurance in international sign conference interpreting at international organisations
Keywords:Quality assurance, conference interpreting, International Sign, interpreter education.
Quality assurance (QA) in conference interpreting is considered essential among international organisations and interpreting practitioners (Pöchhacker, 1994). The need for QA resulted in the establishment of the International Association of Conference Interpreters (AIIC) and the development of university degree programmes in conference interpreting in spoken languages worldwide (Seeber, 2021). International organisations such as the United Nations and the European Union (EU) work closely with universities worldwide to ensure that interpreters are trained and assessed in line with their requirements. Sign language conference interpreters working with International Sign (IS) do not have equivalent opportunities to be trained and assessed as their spoken language colleagues, with whom they work for international organisations. Therefore, to assure that those who deliver IS conference interpretation services are up to quality standards, the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) and the World Association of Sign Language Interpreters (WASLI) established an accreditation system for IS interpreters in 2015. As of June 2021, thirty IS interpreters had obtained the corresponding accreditation. In this article we examine the 2021 QA system for IS conference interpreters and present findings from our 2019 global survey of the perspectives of IS conference interpreters (de Wit et al., 2021) in combination with a follow-up study on practitioners’ training and accreditation needs. The results indicate that there is a demand for formal professional training programmes that focus on interpreting IS in conference settings and a need to enhance the current accreditation system.
LicenseAuthors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).