In Consecutive Interpretation the interpreter listens to the source-language of one or multiple speakers and, after a sentence or a part of the speech, reproduces the speech in the target language for the audience. Usually the interpreter summarizes the original sentences or relays the gist. Consecutive Interpretation is more useful for one-to-one meetings and small groups.
Often Consecutive Interpretation interpreter are incorrectly labelled as 'Consecutive translation' and as 'Consecutive translator', not differentiating the definite distinction between interpretation and translation.
Consecutive Language interpretation is the facilitating of oral or sign-language communication, either simultaneously or consecutively, between users of different languages. The process is described by both the words interpreting and interpretation.
In professional parlance, consecutive interpreting denotes the facilitating of communication from one language form into its equivalent, or approximate equivalent, in another language form; while interpretation denotes the actual product of this work, that is, the message thus rendered into speech, sign language, writing, non-manual signals, or other language form. This important distinction is observed in order to avoid confusion.
A Consecutive Interpreter is a person who converts a thought or expression in a source language into an expression with a comparable meaning in a target language in "real time". The Consecutive Interpreter's function is to convey every semantic element (tone and register) and every intention and feeling of the message that the source-language speaker is directing to target-language recipients.
Simultaneous vs Consecutive Interpretation
Simultaneous Interpretation is distinctly different to Consecutive Interpretation. In Consecutive Interpreting, in which the speaker stops usually at the end of every “paragraph” or complete thought, for the interpreter to step in to render what was said into the target language. In Simultaneous Interpretation there are no such breaks. A key skill involved in consecutive interpreting is note-taking, since few people can memorize a full paragraph in one hearing without loss of detail. Interpreter’s notes are very different from those of, say, a stenographer, because writing down words in the source language makes the interpreter’s job harder when he has to translate the speech into the target language.
Full Infographic on slideshare: Globibo ISO 18841 Interpretation Standard Infographic
Consecutive Interpretation Systems
Compared to Simultaneous interpretation, Consecutive Interpretation usually requires only a significantly more simple technical setup. Globibo has a wide range of different Interpretation Systems to accommodate for different needs of Clients and Interpreters. The key components required for Consecutive Interpretation System (also called Mobile Interpretation System) are :
- Tour Guide System Microphone : The get a crisp sound from the interpreter into the transmitter.
- Tour Guide System Transmitters : The mobile infrastructure to emit the interpretation signal to the receivers.
- Tour Guide System Headsets : The wireless device for delegates to hear the interpretation wherever they are in the facilities.
- Tour Guide System Charging Cases : To charge the headsets and transmitters for multi-day events
There are several industry standards that govern Mobile Interpretation Systems. We can also support large-scale events for professional Simultaneous Interpretation Equipment (like Mobile Booth). For more information on our Interpretation Equipment, please check out the following page : Interpretation Equipment
Consecutive Interpretation Standards
While there are plenty established Translation Standards like ISO 17100 / 11669 or regional and local standards, the Interpretation Standards ISO 18841 is rather new. ISO 18841 describes basic principles, working conditions and procedures as well as general qualification criteria for Interpretation Projects. In several sections, ISO18841 relates to other standards government language services. For an infographic on ISO 18841, please check out : Globibo ISO 18841 Interpretation Standard Infographic.
Related standards like ISO 20108 and 20109 focus mainly on the technical equipment and ergonomics towards the Consecutive Interpreter. ISO 4043 focusses exclusively on the mobile booth (a separate standard structures details for in-built booth). Several associations also summarize best practices and code of ethics for Interpreters, but those guideline often risk to swing more towards competition dilution than Customer Quality Assurance.
As Globibo, we have developed an own standard on how to evaluate linguists. Considering our large-scale facilities and technical equipment, we provide training opportunities for Simultaneous Interpreters as well as aspiring Consecutive Interpreters. Together with educational institutes, we try to improve the skill-set from linguists working in conferences.
Language Interpreter Qualification
Consecutive Interpreters is a slightly less complicated approach compared to Simultaneous Interpretation. Even though, linguist require thorough qualifications and certifications to provide the right quality of service. Interpreters do not just need linguist talent, but also very specific training on technologies and technical equipment. Beyond the language combination and direction, special attention is given on the specific subject-matter of the conference / meeting and the corresponding background of the consecutive linguist. Industry- and domain-knowledge appear to be one of the key driver of project excellence.
Based on international standards, guidelines for associations and policies from different ministries, we have defined a qualification standard and process to select the right linguists for specific projects. With global delivery centers around the world, we have access to a larger pool of linguists and can select balancing talent and cost.
Related Interpretation Approaches
- Consecutive Interpretation: segment-based interpretation via summarizing / gisting 1-5 minutes of speech
- Simultaneous Interpretation: renders the message in target-language as quickly as he or she can formulate it from source language, while the source-language speaker continuously speaks
- Liason Interpretation: used mainly to mediate between 2 or more people who do not speak the same language on a more informal and personal basis
- Whispered Interpretation: interpreter sits or stands next to the target-language audience whilst whispering a simultaneous interpretation of the message in question
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