INSTB stands for International Network of Simulated Translation Bureaus. It is a partnership of a number of universities with a training institute for translation and terminology that all have a so-called simulated translation bureau in their curricula. A simulated translation bureau is a translation bureau that is staffed and run by students as a real translation bureau. It is part of the curriculum and earns credit points.
The idea for a simulated translation bureau, or “skills lab”, was developed by the Maastricht School of Translation and Interpreting of Zuyd University of Applied Sciences in The Netherlands. The first simulated bureau was set up in 1984. Since then, the Maastricht school has developed the concept further and has become an authority in this area. The idea for INSTB was born at a meeting with interested institutes in 2008 in Maastricht. INSTB was officially launched as an international network in 2015.
Among the objectives of INSTB is increasing graduate employability by offering students practical experience already during their studies. All member institutes of INSTB offer a skills lab in one form or another, but all with a common minimal core:
- client contact
(e.g. with discussion of wishes, etc., final registration of arrangements, quotation);
- project preparation
(e.g. analysis of project, availability of required staff and equipment, allocation of job to translator(s) and reviser(s), registration in workflow management system);
- translation process
(e.g. translation, self-check by translator, revision by another translator, if needed check of target language text by domain specialist, final check, filling in and registering quality forms, registration of all steps in workflow management system);
- delivering the final product
(e.g. check of client satisfaction, complaint procedure if required).
INSTB has members in The Netherlands, Belgium, France and the United Kingdom.