The NWU is a multi-lingual university, recognising English, Afrikaans and Setswana as official languages. The Potchefstroom Campus specifically, presents 14% of classes in only Afrikaans, 15% of classes in only English and of the remaining 62% of classes, are interpreted from Afrikaans to English.
The Educational Interpreting services at Northwest University provides interpreting services in a variety of modules as well as non-academic interpreting on request. The Educational Interpreting Service’s interpreters are carefully selected. The interpreters in the interpreting service consists mainly of graduates, graduate students and even lecturers. Everything the language directorate does is focused on service improvement. Interpreters receive ongoing service training, and quality control takes place regularly. Surveys on e-Fundi allows students to express their opinions on the interpretation service. Discussion sessions also take place, where the students experience of the interpreter service can be shared.
The NWU interpretation services, is the biggest, simultaneous, educational, interpretation service in the world, with 2200 classes being interpreted each week, by 70 educational interpreters. Many award winning students have made use of the interpretation services. The interpretation services at the NWU-Puk has a satisfaction rating amongst students of between 80% & 90% for the last five years. There are also some modules that are presented in parallel medium. This happens when a class is too big for one venue, and more than 80 students are English. In these cases both an English and Afrikaans group is created.
Lectures in the following educational programs are interpreted:
BA Political and Social Studies
BCom International Trade
BCom Human Resource Management
BSc Actuarial Studies
Bachelor of Social Work
BEd (Foundation Phase and Intermediate Phase)
BSc Nutritional Sciences
BA and BA Hons (Theology)
Diploma in Sport Science
This means most of the modules in this program is available in both English and Afrikaans.
Interpreting services in Setswana is provided for certain modules in the BEd program.
How does interpreting work?
Students submit their student cards to the interpreter in the classroom, in exchange for an earphone (these earphones are cleaned with medical alcohol wipes after each use). Students can sit anywhere in the class with the wireless earphone used to listen to the interpretation. Students listen to the interpreted version of the class along with the rest of the class and can participate in class discussions, ask questions, etc.. At the end students hand their earphones in and get their student cards back.
Ms Anneliese Beukes, Room 249, Building F1
(Tel: 018 299 2747)
Mr Johan Blaauw, Room 237, Building C1
(Tel: 018 299 4890)