Simultaneous interpreting at conferences, conventions etc.
When interpreting simultaneously, the interpreter orchestrates a precise and comprehensible conversation between interlocutors who often do not speak a common language. In a globalized world, the necessity of a translator is of vital importance to close the communication gap between people dealing with matters of governments, companies as well as research centres, education facilities and other institutions.
Simultaneous interpreting is the ultimate form of oral language mediation. Contrary to consecutive interpreting, simultaneous interpreting is performed in real time. Since this requires utmost attention and concentration, events lasting several hours generally employ two simultaneous interpreters.
The simultaneous interpreters usually work in soundproof booths and alternate every 20-30 minutes. The interpreters hear the information via headset and speak into a microphone. This form of interpreting is mentally and physically very exhausting, which is why a sophisticated interpreting technique and a high level of professional competence are crucial for the interpreter. Simultaneous interpreting is used, inter alia, for multilingual events, conferences, GMP inspections, conventions, symposia, negotiations or shows.
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Our sworn and experienced simultaneous interpreters will be happy to accompany you to every kind of event, such as:
What does simultaneous interpreting mean?
When interpreting simultaneously, the interpreter already starts translating after only a few words have been spoken in the source language. The interpreter’s task is to translate what is said to a target audience or a person in another language during a continuous dialogue or monologue without errors.
Simultaneous interpreting requires immense abilities and a wealth of information on which interpreters can draw. Thus, this form of translation tops the list of the most complex kinds of human communication.
Usually, the translator works from a soundproof booth and hears what is spoken via headphones. While the speaker is talking, the translator transfers the information into a microphone. The translation is transmitted to headphones worn by the audience.
Simultaneous interpreting often does not mean translating exactly word for word. The result is rather rendering what is said in the target language as precisely as possible.
Simultaneous interpreters are usually isolated from the audience in their soundproof booths so that the speech can be translated into several different languages at once. The audience choose the language they prefer by changing the channel of their headsets.
A smooth flow of the presentation and a short time delay are important main advantages of simultaneous interpreting.
Challenges of simultaneous interpreting
In the world of language services, simultaneous interpreting can be classified as the most demanding service of all. The interpreter has to have excellent linguistic knowledge in at least two languages. Furthermore, he or she has to be very well prepared mentally, particularly if the meeting or the conference takes place over a longer period of time and many speakers are involved.
Being a simultaneous interpreter means understanding correctly what is said while transferring the necessary nuances into the target language. For this to be possible, the interpreter needs special intercultural competences beyond linguistic knowledge to be able to interpret certain gestures or emphases correctly.
When interpreting simultaneously, the interpreter only has very little time to hear, understand and interpret what is said and render it in the target language. Generally, the time delay between the speaker and the interpreter is only a few seconds. Due to this time pressure, interpreters cannot look up unknown expressions and terms in a dictionary, but have to be totally convinced of their linguistic abilities. In addition, the interpreters’ work also requires them to have the ability to improvise.
Since the process of simultaneous interpreting involves high psychological and physical stress, several interpreters often work in a team. They generally work in shifts of 20-30 minutes. Due to the high complexity and stress of this form of interpreting, we always pay attention to optimal training and further education of our simultaneous interpreters.
Areas in which simultaneous interpreting is used
Simultaneous interpreting is primarily used for formal or large groups, or for all forms of occasions on which a person speaks in front of an international audience. These events can comprise diplomatic conferences, international trade fairs, business or board meetings, training sessions, court hearings, lectures and presentations in front of an international audience or guided tours.
Simultaneous interpreting keeps the audience focused and attentive. During conferences, the participants can generally talk to each other, read conference material and leaflets and look around, which means that their attention is divided.
When you offer simultaneous interpreting, the event participants can turn their full attention to what the speaker is saying in order to understand the message.