Exploring Students’ Self-efficacy in a Chinese- English Interpreting Class in Australia

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In this chapter, we explore the relationship between self-efficacy, interpreting training and interpreting performance among Chinese-English (international and heritage) interpreting students in Australia. Self-efficacy is understood as an individual’s perception of his or her capacity to perform a specific task, and the belief in one’s capacities to mobilize personal resources, such as motivation, cognitive and behavioural skills, in order to orchestrate task-specific performance (Gist & Gist, 2016). Self-efficacy is multidimensional, involving three areas of one’s capabilities including: motivation, resources and action, and it draws upon four major sources including: mastery experience, vicarious experience, verbal persuasion, and physiological state. (Bandura, 1994) The data for this chapter was collected through semi-structured interviews, questionnaire surveys and reflective journals of 43 students, who were enrolled in an interpreting training class in Australia at the time when the data was collected. In addition, a series of semi-structured interviews was conducted with the lecturer of this class (in this case, the first author of the chapter) by the co-authors of this chapter. The aim of this chapter is to unpack the issues of self-efficacy, interpreting training and interpreting performance among Chinese-English interpreting students in Australia. In particular, we address the following research questions: 1) how do students perceive their self-efficacy in interpreting training and performance? 2) to what extent does the lecturer play a role in developing students’ self-efficacy in the interpreting training class? 3) what are the implications of enhancing students’ self-efficacy for teaching international Chinese and heritage students in a classroom in Australia? Our research shows that self-efficacy is a multilayered concept that should be revisited and adopted to facilitate interpreting training in a conducive pedagogic relationship between students, the lecturer and situated collaborative learning environment. This chapter is of significance for further understanding and enhancing the teaching of international Chinese and heritage students in Australian universities.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication交通大学出版社
Subtitle of host publicationTeaching and Learning Chinese in International Contexts
EditorsGuoqiang Liu, Shaoming Zhou
Place of PublicationShanghai, China
PublisherShanghai Jiao Tong University Press
Number of pages38
ISBN (Print)9787313240170
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


  • self-efficacy; interpreting training and performance; sources of self-efficacy; teaching international Chinese (and heritage) students in Australia

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