Does Directionality Affect Chinese-English Consecutive Interpreting Quality? Perceptions and Performance of Chinese Interpreting Students




directionality, consecutive interpreting, interpreting students, perceptions, interpreting quality


The impact of directionality on interpreting performance has been a long-term controversy in interpreting studies. The aim of this study is to investigate how directionality affects Chinese-English consecutive interpreting (CI) performance from the perspective of Chinese interpreting students. Both qualitative and quantitative analyses were used to identify their perceptions of directionality and to compare their actual interpreting performance in two directions: from Chinese, their A language, to English, their B language and vice- versa. The research findings are as follows: 1) interpreting students were more fluent but less accurate in their B-into-A CI performance even though the majority of them were more confident in their B-into-A performance; 2) limited B language availability is identified as the major reason accounting for the information loss in the B-into-A CI performance while low availability of trans-linguistic correspondences is found to be responsible for the disfluencies in the A-into-B CI performance; 3) the lack of diversified use of interpreting strategies in B-into-A CI leads to huge information loss, mainly manifested as omissions in order to maintain fluency. The results imply differentiated focuses on the training of CI between two directions and highlight the significance of incorporating interpreting strategies into the training of interpreters.


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