President’s Newsletter February 2023

Dear Colleagues,

I hope you are all well. First of all, my thoughts are with our fellow practitioners whose families and friends have been affected by the earthquake in Turkiye and Syria, and with the entire populations of these two nations.

It has been an exciting month for AUSIT. On the second weekend of February, I caught up with the TAS Branch Committee in Hobart. It was a great opportunity to meet them and learn more about the T&I landscape in Tasmania, including their particular challenges.

From left: Miriam Chiu (TAS Chair), Echo Zhang (TAS Secretary), Angelo Berbotto (AUSIT President) and Martin Blackwell (TAS PD Coordinator)
Angelo Berbotto giving his seminar.
Top: attendees networking after the Linguists and the Law seminar held on 18 February at RMIT. Left: Victoria Branch Chair, Dina Kerr acting as MC.

I also received a warm welcome in Victoria. The VIC Branch’s positive energy was palpable. Getting 72 practitioners indoors to discuss ethical issues in T&I on such a glorious beach weather day is no mean feat. We ran a practical seminar called Linguists and the Law. I will be running this seminar several times this year, in each of the branches and online. The next one will be on 18 March in Tasmania. TAS Branch members will receive more details closer to the date.

On 17 March I will give a presentation to my fellow solicitors at the Law Society of Tasmania. Tasmanian interpreters can request a complimentary ticket by emailing the Tasmanian Branch Chair, Miriam Chiu, at There are only 10 tickets available, so please only request a ticket if you are sure you can attend.

Boosting AUSIT membership numbers

We are destined to grow! AUSIT has been around for almost four decades. We are not an exclusive club, but the peak body for T&I practitioners, so we need to open our doors to all Australian-based T&I practitioners. One of the learning points from the Linguists and the Law seminar is that being part of a community of peers helps reduce the likelihood of making mistakes and having lapses of ethical judgment. Poor decision making generally occurs when people work in isolation.

When we bounce ideas off others we see things more clearly, and this is one of the benefits of being a member of AUSIT. AUSIT offers community: a family for practitioners in the T&I professions. By working together, we can improve the quality of our services and our reputation and visibility as professionals, and we can also demand better working conditions.

So, if you have a colleague who isn’t yet an AUSIT member, please encourage them to join us.

Also, all interpreters working in court and tribunals must become aware of the Recommended National Standards and follow the guidance and best practice. Remember to report any negative court or tribunal interpreting experiences you have via the Interpreter feedback form. Collecting this information will help us understand which parts of the country and/or jurisdictions (magistrates, tribunals, registries or court offices, for example) need to do better. AUSIT can use the evidence we gather to make a case for better working conditions, and for more training in certain courts or locations. You can fill out the form anonymously.

Conversations podcast

In February, I was invited to join Fatih Karakas on his Conversations podcast. We talked about AUSIT, how I see the industry, and the work ahead for AUSIT. You can listen to our conversation here.

Website update

The Communications Committee is currently updating the AUSIT website. Our aim is for it to fulfill its purpose as an information hub for members with the latest on PD events, cutting-edge research, best practice, information on how to join AUSIT, and information for T&I users.

We are AUSIT
Above: screenshot of a new video currently on the AUSIT homepage

Communications and Public Relations VP, Vesna Cvjeticanin, interviewed several active AUSIT members at the Brisbane 2022 National Conference. She asked them to talk about what they do in their various capacities, and to encourage practitioners to join AUSIT. You can view the first video on the AUSIT homepage.

If you have a suggestion for our website, please write to

Webinars now free to AUSIT members

In an effort to bring more benefits to our members, the National Council has released all webinars recorded prior to 1 January 2020.  These are now free of charge for AUSIT members. You can find them via the online store on the AUSIT website.

Community Translation Protocols

As the peak professional organisation in Australia’s T&I industry, AUSIT has been a key participant in this Group, and as a result, we partnered with the Federation of Ethnic Communities of Australia (FECCA) and the federal Department of Health to develop a Quality Assurance Framework for Community Translation. This led to AUSIT drafting National Protocols for Community Translation that set out guidelines for good practice, and will be pivotal in future health and environmental crises.

These Protocols were launched on 17 February at RMIT University. They are also in the process of being translated into Portuguese, Spanish and Arabic.

I want to encourage LSPs to use the protocols and incorporate them into their processes. LSPs have a key role in educating government departments and community organisations about what constitutes an adequate copy for translating into LOTEs.

Callout: In Touch seeks unsung heroes and inspirational colleagues

The T&I industry is full of passionate, dedicated people who inspire those around them, and our In Touch readers love hearing the stories of their lives and careers.

Do you have a colleague, a fellow branch member, a mentor or … well, anyone who you’ve come across during your time as a student and/or practitioner of T&I, whose story you’d like to share with AUSIT’s readers? We’d love to help you put the story together and share it with your colleagues. We’d particularly like to hear about senior practitioners – people who have been in the profession for many decades, and over that time have made significant contributions to AUSIT and/or the broader T&I profession.

If you would like to suggest someone, please write to our editors: Helen Sturgess ( or Hayley Armstrong (

Welcome new National PD Coordinator: Epperly Zhang
Epperly Zhang

I am pleased to announce Epperly Zhang’s appointment as National PD Coordinator.

Of the 9 high quality applications we received for the role, we interviewed 4. Many candidates had considerable experience and skills. Applicants answered objective criteria and were interviewed via Zoom.

Epperly already has relevant experience, having volunteered as the PD Coordinator for the VIC Branch.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity and am excited to work together with branch PD Coordinators to bring more meaningful and engaging PD events to the T&I community and to help members better connect with and support one another.” – Epperly Zhang

Mentorship program

The Education Committee of AUSIT is seeking seasoned practitioners interested in becoming mentors to newly certified practitioners and students in their final stages of formal study. If you are interested or would like to know more, please contact National Education Co-ordinator Rebeca Paredes Nieto at

Consultation on the ‘Industry Affiliates’ closes 15 March

As mentioned in my January Newsletter, we are accepting submissions on the ‘Industry Affiliates’ until 15 March. Don’t delay writing your comments and sending them through. You can read the proposals in the following documents:
Proposal and Description of ‘Industry Affiliate’ Category
Proposed Best Practices for ‘Industry Affiliate’ LSPs.

Please send your thoughts to: or  

Calling Specialist Interpreters and candidates to the CSLI and CSHI

1) a Certified Specialist Legal or Health Interpreter?  Would you like to help AUSIT raise the profile of specialised interpreting by participating in seminars and round tables to talk about your journey into specialisation?

2) a practitioner interested in gaining the CSLI/CSHI?

Express your interest by sending the following information:

  •   language pair
  •   whether you already have the CSLI or CSHI credential
  •   your location

and we will get in touch with you for further steps.

Congratulations to research award winners

CIUTI is the world’s oldest and most prestigious international association of university institutes with translation and interpretation programmes. Membership requires fulfillment of strict quality criteria in teaching and research, and only the top universities are admitted. CIUTI has an annual competition for PhD and Master theses open to its members.

Two of AUSIT’s affiliate institutions received CIUTI awards:

Alisa Tian from UNSW was the winner of the Most Outstanding MA Thesis Award for her thesis, Tackling long sentences in the translation classroom: an investigation of the usefulness of a Systemic Functional Linguistics-based approach in teaching long sentence translation from English to Chinese (Master of Philosophy thesis). Congratulations to Alisa and her thesis supervisor Mira Kim.

Dr Sixin Liao, from Macquarie University’s T&I program, was awarded the First Laureate prize for the 2022 CIUTI PhD Award, for her thesis The Impact of Visual and Auditory Information on Subtitle Processing: An Eye-Tracking Study. Congratulations to Sixin and to her main supervisor, Prof Jan-Louis Kruger.


Branch News

VIC Branch News ... as reported by Karine Bachelier

A big ‘Thank you!’ to the 60 respondents who answered the VIC Branch survey. The objective was to ask our members about their preferred format of networking events (in-person/online), preferred time of day, and areas of interest.

The VIC Branch Committee will now set a schedule of events for 2023. The first of these events will be:

Culture on a Plate!

When: Saturday 18 March: Culture on a Plate event

Venue: Picnic spot at a park (subject to weather conditions: TBC and map to be supplied closer to the date, via an email to Victorian members)

All T&I practitioners are most welcome and encouraged to join us for this celebration of cultural diversity in Victoria. Bring a traditional food or drink reflecting your cultural background, and share it while getting to know one another. Feel free to invite non-member practitioners to come and meet everyone!

  • QLD Branch – Culture on a Plate! 18 March 2023
  • TAS Branch – 18 March 2023
  • SANT Branch – 16 May 2023

CLICK ON THE BUTTON to be diverted to the registration links and more information:


All information below is provided by external organisations. Please register and direct any enquiries to the relevant contact outlined in each announcement, rather than to AUSIT.


MAKING SPACE: Policy and Practice to Support LGBTQ Refugees and Asylum Seekers

Facilitated by: Mx. Liz Schmidt

When: Friday 17 March 2023, 1–4 pm

Where: Western Sydney University, Level 9, Conference Room 3, Parramatta City Campus (1PSQ)

Click here to register.

Join us for the launch of “Making Space,” a report based on the findings of the recent research project: Policy to Practice: What Australian Refugee Resettlement Policy Means for Queer Refugees and Asylum Seekers, authored by Fulbright scholar Liz Schmidt.

Join us for the launch of “Making Space,” a report based on the findings of the recent research project: Policy to Practice: What Australian Refugee Resettlement Policy Means for Queer Refugees and Asylum Seekers, authored by Fulbright scholar Liz Schmidt.

The launch will be followed by a workshop for practitioners, community members and academics to discuss how the contents of the report can be put into practice to generate strategies that include and support LGBTQ refugees and asylum seekers. This event is ideal for those working in refugee or LGBTQ spaces and looking for professional development opportunities. Community members who wish to become more involved are also welcome.

Look out for a Liz’s summary of her research project in the upcoming (April) issue of In Touch magazine.


Machine translation, creativity and global translation flows: a contrastive corpus study of creative language in digital news

Recent research into creativity and machine translation (MT) has opened up the field to studies into specific features of human translations that are not shared with MT texts  (e.g. Toral and Guerberof Arenas 2019; Guerberof-Arenas and Toral 2022; Oliver, Toral and Guerberof 2023). This paper investigates the intersection of MT integrations in social media, creative language and the global dissemination of news. It is based on contrastive study of a multi-parallel corpus of tweet translations in digital news outlets and their MT translations embedded in the Twitter platform. Twitter has offered MT translations since 2015, and it has helped accelerate the global news cycle (Hermida 2012, 2016). This social networking platform has also become in itself a source of news (Broersma and Graham 2013). Reproducing tweets that are often creative in nature and their translations has become a global mainstream phenomenon (Guerrero 2019). Methodologically, the uses the framework proposed by Toral and Guerberof (2022) in order to contrastively study creativity in human and MT translations. In doing so, the paper will shed light on (1) the extent to which digital journalism rely on readily available MT translations for their reporting, (2) how Google NMT  performs in creative uses of language in comparison to human translations and (3) the implications for TS and society at large of the interweaving of human and MT translations through embedded MT widgets in digital spaces. 

Miguel A. Jiménez-Crespo holds a PhD in Translation and Interpreting Studies from the University of Granada, Spain. He is a Professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, Rutgers University, where he directs the graduate and undergraduate program in Spanish – English Translation and Interpreting.  He is the author of  Crowdsourcing and Online Collaborative Translations: Expanding the Limits of Translation Studies published by John Benjamins in 2017 and Translation and Web Localization published by Routledge in 20013. He is in the editorial board of a number of Translation and Interpreting Studies journals such as Meta: Studies in Translatology, Jostrans: The Journal of Specialized Translation, Translation and Interpreting, The Journal of Digital Translation, InContext or Sendebar.

The seminar will take place on Tuesday 7 March at 3 pm via zoom.

Register in advance for this meeting
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Legal words for interpreters & bilingual workers – criminal law

Date: 6 March 2:30pm – 4:00pm

Where: Legal Aid Head Office, Haymarket NSW – In person only.

In this face to face event, an experienced Legal Aid NSW criminal lawyer will explain some common and complex legal terminology in the area of criminal law. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions.

The target audience is interpreters and bilingual workers, especially those who are new to working in legal and court settings. However any workers who support people in the community are welcome to join.

Register for this event

FIT-ILF 2023 – XIV International Forum

Legal Translation and Interpreting 

Date: 8-9 July 2023


Calls for Proposals

8th JLPP International Translation Competition

Submission period: 1­–30 June 2023

The Japanese Agency for Cultural Affairs is pleased to hold the 8th JLPP International Translation Competition to discover and foster emerging translators of contemporary Japanese literature. The winners of previous JLPP translation competitions are now actively working as literary translators all over the world. Aspiring translators of contemporary Japanese literature are eagerly encouraged to apply. Click here for more details.

Job Kiosk

AUSIT seeks volunteer online webinar presenters and moderators

Deadline to apply: 5pm AEDT Friday 10 March

Open to all AUSIT members regardless of your location in Australia.

AUSIT is putting together a list of volunteers to chair and moderate online webinars. It is a great opportunity for you to gain NAATI recertification points under the industry engagement category, and also develop new skills (or finetune existing ones).

As a chairperson/moderator your duties will include:

  • introducing presenter(s),
  • acknowledgement of country,
  • other housekeeping and
  • keeping an eye on the chat and answering questions there.

Advantageous skills to have include:

  • knowledge of Zoom,
  • public speaking skills and
  • time keeping skills.

If you are interested, please write to the PD Coordinator at before 5pm on 10 March AEST. Training will be provided in March.

Reading Corner: Interesting Articles & Journals

A big congratulations to Immediate Past President Erika Gonzalez, Katarzyna Stachowiak-Szymczak and Despina Amanatidou, who have published a book titled: Community Translation, Research and Practice.

Look out for the review in the upcoming Autumn issue of In Touch due out in the first week of April.

As you can see, AUSIT is alive and kicking and we have much, much more coming in the near future.  Let’s work together to strengthen our position as the peak T&I body. If you are a loyal member of AUSIT, spread the word. Invite people to join AUSIT so that we can sing in tune and harmony to achieve results.


J. Angelo Berbotto
AUSIT National President


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for court interpreters to report incidents or issues that occur in court interpreting assignments.

Purpose and function of this information submission form.

This form enables you to report issues or problems that you encounter in the course of court interpreting assignments. These issues and problems will be collected by AUSIT to report to the JCCD (the Judicial Council on Cultural Diversity) to monitor the implementation of the Recommended National Standards. The reporting of these issues and problems enables AUSIT to work with the JCCD to suggest steps to address these issues and to avoid the repetition of these problems in the future.

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