Quality Assessment of English-Kiswahili Sermon Interpreting from Selected Churches in Dar es Salaam: The Case of Sense Consistency with the Original Message

Liyenja Mwinuka, Pendo Malangwa, Nicholous Asheli


In Tanzania, interpreting mainly takes place in the church setting. English and Kiswahili are the languages mainly used in interpreting in this setting. What remains unclear is whether or not the interpreting services offered in this setting adhere to quality interpreting standards. This paper is concerned with assessing the quality of English-Kiswahili sermon interpreting. Specifically, it sought to find out whether or not there was sense consistency in English-Kiswahili sermon interpreting. The study was done in purposively selected churches in Dar es Salaam. It is guided by sense-based theory. The data was collected through nonparticipant observation and video recording. It was analyzed descriptively. The findings indicate that sense consistency with the original message was not consistently adhered to during the EnglishKiswahili sermon interpreting. As a result, there were regular communication breakdowns between the preachers and the audience. The inconsistency established was a result of lack of professional training, because it was found that the interpreters were volunteers without any professional training in interpreting. This paper recommends professional training of interpreters to equip them with linguistic and extra-linguistic knowledge, methodology, skills and ethics of interpreting, which will enable them to provide quality interpreting services in churches as well as in other social settings in Tanzania.

Keywords: quality interpreting, quality interpreting criteria, quality interpreting assessment

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 [ISSN 0856-9965 (Print)]