Tutor Profile - Mariana Asminian
17 September 2019
'I am a qualified interpreter trainer for DPSI and DPI courses (legal, police and medical) interpreting courses. These exams are taken externally at the Chartered Institute of Linguists, and candidates who pass the exam are considered professional interpreters.
I have always loved teaching, and initially started training to become a language tutor, but the head of school where I was training offered me the opportunity to teach interpreting, thus combining my interpreting knowledge with teaching. I love the interaction with students, and I hope I am mostly successful in inspiring my interest in legal interpreting in them.
It’s not a regular 9-5 job - there is soul and interaction with human beings. I teach adults, often who are changing careers or starting out, and I feel our courses can sometime change the way people feel about themselves, their lives and their future prospects. That is what I like most about the job.
I love teaching people of various abilities and backgrounds who are committed to improving. I try to incorporate all types of activities in my classes, because my main objective is for students to be engaged and motivated, therefore I use a lot of pair-group activities and discussions. I also like telling anecdotes from past cases and I find learners are fascinated, a bit like hearing a story-teller!
Many excellent teachers have inspired me in the past, whom I have taken as role models for my own teaching. I also take a lot of cues from great spiritual leaders, for example; Pope Francis or the Dalai Lama; and philosophies, because in order to teach, you need to reach the student at a deeper level than just on an intellectual basis. Students come to courses with a background, problems, challenges, limitations, and if I am unable to tackle those, then I might not help them achieve. Apart from that, the feedback and requests from students are the main factor that spurs me to change things and evolve.
I am currently co-teaching one of my courses with an amazing and inspiring tutor, Zoe Diderich. I like working with intelligent, professional individuals. We have up to 15 students at any one time giving plenty of time for everyone to discuss and get feedback.
As well as teaching, I am a freelance interpreter in Spanish and Armenian, working mainly in police and legal settings, but I have also done medical interpreting, advertising campaigns, and even TV!'