Interpreting Accuracy and Rapport in High Stakes Interviews: A Simulation Experiment

Increasingly, interviewers rely on interpreters because they lack proficiency in the language spoken by the interviewee. Yet little is known about ways interpreters can affect the dynamics of the interview. The proposed study addresses this gap in the literature, by testing three practices to mitigate risk in interviews with non-English-speaking interviewees: (a) interpreter skill (e.g., training, experience, professional accreditation); (b) position of the interpreter in relation to the interviewer and interviewee; and (c) training intervention to raise interpreters’ awareness of the importance of rapport building between interviewer and interviewee so as to minimise any potential interference.

It is expected that the study will yield data of practical value in working with Spanish-speaking and other suspects or witnesses with a non-English language background. Key strategies will be identified that practitioners can apply when conducting interpreted interviews to optimize the performance of interpreters and maintain rapport between interviewer and interviewee.

The Chief Investigators are: Prof. Jane Goodman-Delahunty (CSU) (lead), Prof. Sandra Hale (UNSW), Prof. Mandeep Dhami (Middlesex), and Natalie Martschuk (CSU).

Project collaborators: External

Prof Jane Goodman-Delahunty
Charles Sturt University
Natalie Martschuk
Charles Sturt University
Prof Mandeep K Dhami
Middlesex University

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Arts,Design & Architecture