Publication details [#14257]

Abril Martí, María Isabel. 2007. La interpretación en los servicios públicos: caracterización como género, contextualización y modelos de formación. Hacia unas bases para el diseño curricular [Genre characteristics, contextualization and training models in public service interpreting: identifying grounds for curricular design].
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This article is an abstract of a doctoral thesis completed at the Department of Translating and Interpreting, University of Granada, Spain.


Public Service Interpreting (PSI) is an increasingly necessary activity in our globalized world, as modern societies become more multiethnic, multilingual and multicultural. Yet, in many countries it is still not recognized as a profession. Against this background, this thesis explores aspects that will help to identify ways of moving towards the professionalization of PSI. In the first section; Alexieva's (1997) criteria for a typology of interpreter-mediated events is used to identify a series of specific social, communicative contextual, pragmatic and function features that characterize PSI as a genre-related but not secondary to other, better established types of interpreting. The second section provides a comparative view of the evolution and status questionis of PSI in different countries, grouped in the categories established by Ozolins's (2000) international spectrum of response to interpreting needs. This panoramic view of PSI underlines historical, social, political and cultural aspects that determine the state of PSI in each country and influence the prevailing concept of the interpreter's role to a great extent. In the third section the state of PSI training is reviewed in the countries described in the previous section, with different training initiatives classified according to formal or non-formal models . In a second phase of analysis, 43 formal and 45 non-formal training initiatives are compared with each other in term so their type of sponsor and institution, duration, approach (generic or setting-specific), contents, languages, and selection and/or assessment process. Among other results, this comparative approach shows that formal training tends to last longer, and to adopt a more comprehensive approach, while non-formal training seems to cover a wider range of minority languages and both models agree to a certain extent on the minimum contents deemed essential to train interpreters. Finally, the first three sections intersect in a final one, aimed at finding basic grounds for a specific process of curricular design, and in particular for the first two stages identified by Kelly's (2005) model, namely planning objectives and designing contents. The overall objective is to contribute to curricular decision-making specifically oriented to the training of professional public service interpreters whose competence would help to consolidate PSI as a fully fledged profession.
Source : Based on abstract in journal