Simultaneous Interpretation

Interpretation Services

Simultaneous Interpretation Service

In (extempore) Simultaneous Interpretation (abbreviated SI), the Simultaneous Interpreter renders the message in the target-language as quickly as he or she can formulate it from the source language, while the source-language speaker continuously speaks.

Simultaneous Interpretation interpreter mostly sit in a sound-proof booth, speaking into a microphone, while clearly seeing and hearing the source-language speaker via earphones. The simultaneous interpretation is rendered to the target-language listeners via their earphones. Moreover, Simultaneous Interpretation is the common mode used by sign language interpreters, although the person using the source language, the Simultaneous interpreter and the target language recipient (since either the hearing person or the deaf person may be delivering the message) must necessarily be in close proximity.

Often Simultaneous Interpretation interpreter are incorrectly labeled as 'simultaneous translation' and as 'simultaneous translator', not differentiating the definite distinction between interpretation and translation.

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.

Simultaneous Interpretation Systems

Simultaneous interpretation requires in most cases the setup of dedicated technical equipment. Globibo has a wide range of different Interpretation Systems to accommodate for different needs of Clients and Interpreters. The key components of an Interpretation System are :

For more information on our Interpretation Equipment, please check out the following page : Interpretation Equipment

Simultaneous Interpretation Standards

While there are plenty of Translation Standards like ISO 17100 / 11669 or regional and local standards, Interpretation Standards are not very prominent. ISO 20108 and 20109 focus mainly on the technical equipment and ergonomics towards the Simultaneous Interpreter. ISO 4043 focusses exclusively on the mobile booth (a separate standard structures details for in-built booth). Several associations try to summarize best practices and code of ethics for Interpreters, but also 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.

Interpreter Qualification

Simultaneous Interpreters are a very dedicated profession, with thorough qualifications and certifications. 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 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.

Skills of Simultaneous Interpreters

Professor Tsuruta summarizes the most important tips to adopt while working as a simultaneous interpreter. She states that there are 11 qualities that one must possess to really succeed in the career.

  1. Fluency of Delivery
  2. Logical Cohesion
  3. Correct Terminology
  4. Pleasant Voice
  5. Correct Grammar
  6. Synchronicity
  7. Consistency
  8. Appropriate Style
  9. Live Intonation
  10. Completeness
  11. Native Accent

You can see the summary of Professor Tsuruta's research in the following video : A Formula for Success in Simultaneous Interpreting

Simultaneous Interpretation Booth

Different projects have different requirements in regards to the Interpretation Booth. Over the years we have collected a wealth of experience in regards to the planning, design, execution and monitoring of the setup of small to large-scale booth infrastructures. In this setup, we understand the balance between Interpreters comfort, security and quality level with aesthetic and design considerations.

For more information, please check out the information about Mobile Simultaneous Interpretation Booth

Simultaneous Interpretation Education

Interested in becoming a Simultaneous Interpreter or trying your skills? Check out our Simultaneous Interpretation Development Program.
More information : Simultaneous Interpretation Development Program


Other Language Interpretation Approaches

To get more information about other Interpretation approaches, please check out the following links :

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