If you are applying to NAATI to gain a certification for the first time, you will normally need to pass both the intercultural and ethical screening tests before you become eligible to sit a certification test. You will also have to satisfy other prerequisites depending on the eligibility pathway you choose. It is split up into several sections that include a Code of Conduct which explains how ethical principles are to be applied and separate sections on conduct issues specific to translators and issues specific to interpreters. It is a condition of the credential they are issued.
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The code, written in the early s, and officially endorsed at the General Meeting, has been an essential tool for professionals, but so much has changed in the space of less than twenty years, that an update was maybe even overdue.
A few months ago I attended a panel discussion about the new code at the latest AUSIT Biennial Conference in Sydney, presented by Uldis Ozolins, where we had the chance to examine and discuss the changes to the code. Christian Schmidt was also enlightening in talking about this precious contribution to the process during the National AGM at the end of the conference.
Maintaining Professional Relationships. Furthermore, this is the only instance where the code got more verbose in the re-writing process. Overall, each section has been greatly simplified and shortened: Section 1 Professional Conduct went from 15 points subdivided into five sub-sections to just six points.
Section 5, Accuracy went from 4 sub-sections, and a total of 11 points, to 4 simple points. All the other sections are considerably shorter and will appear much clearer and to the point to people who are not part of the industry. For example, I was asked several times to change or explain some section of an official document. Sometimes a client might even ask me to add information which is nowhere to be found, or to change a date on a document on the basis that they are going to apply for a new copy which they expect to be issued on that date.
I have also encountered a few clients who sounded quite concerned about what I might do with their personal details and any information acquired while carrying out a job.
Clearly, a Code of Ethics with a detailed section about Confidentiality, is an excellent way to show clients what they can and should expect from us as professionals. Of course, explaining what the boundaries of my role are is easy and has always proven effective.
Still, I have noticed that some clients had minor troubles with the wording of the Code, and I was very happy to see that the new version will be an even more effective tool to educate clients and allow them to save valuable time and resources. How my former university colleagues manage to navigate a market that does without these two pillars is beyond me. A simple, superficial analysis actually suggest that the consequences are disastrous, and directly linked with some of the major woes of translation in Italy.
Unskilled translators market themselves well above their true level of competence, at amazingly low prices, and clients, big and small, assign them projects which often result in major embarrassments like the official website of the Italian Ministry of Tourism. Setting a bar, like NAATI accreditation, and having a professional body that requires its members to abide to a code of conduct would doubtlessly sweep away unskilled and untrained people claiming to be translators, leaving the market to professionals.
Without unskilled people driving prices down, translators could finally be able to compete on quality of service, rather than sacrificing it to compete on prices with unskilled competitors. On the contrary, it even affects, in a not-so-indirect way, the livelihood of professionals and therefore the quality of the services we provide.
Code of Ethics
It was founded in , bringing together existing local associations and specialist groups and now has branches in each State and Territory. Members of AUSIT are mainly practicing translators and interpreters, but those interested in the support and development of the profession are encouraged to join as well. With its aim of promoting the highest standards in the profession, AUSIT serves as a meeting place for all those who understand the importance of translation and interpreting to the economy and society, particularly with a globalised economy and the growth of worldwide communications. AUSIT is a primary source of information on these services to government, industry, the media and the general public. AUSIT is a member of the International Federation of Translators FIT , where it represents the interests of members and takes part in the development of international policies likely to affect the future of the profession, and in initiatives to promote and support translation associations throughout the world including countries where translators are oppressed or even persecuted for their work.
AUSIT – Australian Institute of Interpreters and Translators
The code, written in the early s, and officially endorsed at the General Meeting, has been an essential tool for professionals, but so much has changed in the space of less than twenty years, that an update was maybe even overdue. A few months ago I attended a panel discussion about the new code at the latest AUSIT Biennial Conference in Sydney, presented by Uldis Ozolins, where we had the chance to examine and discuss the changes to the code. Christian Schmidt was also enlightening in talking about this precious contribution to the process during the National AGM at the end of the conference. Maintaining Professional Relationships. Furthermore, this is the only instance where the code got more verbose in the re-writing process.
Wrong document context!