Simultaneous Interpretation or Concurrent Interpretation Spanish-English
We make sure your entire audience understands your presentation without delaying your meetings.


What is Simultaneous Interpretation and why is it Important?
Simultaneous Interpretation is a highly specialized area of translation in which the interpreter translates for a speaker at the same rate of speech with only seconds of lag time. It requires accurate and complete translation without missed information. Simultaneous interpretation makes it possible for you to have meetings, conventions and training sessions without scheduling additional time to communicate it across your entire audience. Typically an interpretation booth is used, although a microphone with headsets are also popular options for the interpreter. The secondary language audience each wears a headset and can listen to and observe the training at the same time and speed as the rest of the meeting or conference attendees. Interpreters should not summarize the information being given and should not change the verb tense or present tense of the speaker. Less commonly, separate rooms will be used for simultaneous translation wherein the message is relayed to the interpreter by headset and the interpreter speaks into a microphone for the second language audience. This is typically less effective for the audience as the audience tends to feel separated and segregated from the mainstream group. This can also lead to less participation, less response, and less enthusiasm from the second language audience. 

Group Simultaneous Interpretation

What should I look for when hiring an interpreter?
All too often, translators, who are attempting to simultaneously interpret, may get stuck interpreting a particular word or phrase. This causes them to pause while they figure out what the speaker is saying. Then, because they are behind, the interpreter summarizes what the speaker said or skips some of it completely, which renders the interpretation compromised and ineffective. If you'd like to see an example of a particularly bad interpreter check out this video.

This can also occur when a language is being interpreted into another language with a different sentence structure such as English and Spanish structures differ. For example in English “I like myself and can accomplish wnything that I imagine” turns into “I, myself like, and I am able to accomplish the thing I, myself, imagine” (If translated literally from Spanish.” Another example is “blue car” in English becomes “car blue” in Spanish. An Interpreter must be able to rearrange the sentences correctly and keep pace with the speaker without omitting the fundamental words contained in a sentence. There should not be additional pauses in the translation or summarizing of the ideas presented. 

How can I find an interpreter skilled in Simultaneous Interpretation?
Unfortunately most interpreters consider themselves apt in Simultaneous Interpretation so asking around will not necessarily help you to find a skilled interpreter.

1. Consider hiring an interpreter who has the accreditations from reputable organizations such as the American Translators Association or other state and local organizations. These organizations typically require experience and certain skill level.

2. Review the potential interpreter’s educational background. Does he/she have a degree in Linguistics or Translation and Interpretation? If not, do they at least have a major or minor in the non-native language they will be interpreting from or into?

3. How many years of experience do they have living in a country that is a native speaking country to the languages they are interpreting for?
This is critical because programs, classes and classroom training cannot and does not replace real-life experience speaking and listening to a learned language. The nuances of a language are typically lost to a non-native speaker and it takes both educational study of a language and experience speaking the learned language to acquire the skill necessary to be an accurate and skilled interpreter.

4. An interpreter must be skilled and experienced in Simultaneous Interpretation, should be able to provide references, or be willing to demonstrate their skill level before you hire them.
Most bilingual individuals can attest that speaking two languages does not qualify someone for interpretation. Interpretation takes many more skills than simply speaking another language.

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