Most people aren’t born with amazing multitasking skills allowing them to actively listen and translate to an audience at the same time, but everyone can develop them...
Simultaneous interpreters need to listen to what they're interpreting, translate it, and repeat it at the same time. This requires an immense amount of focus as your attention is literally divided between the activities, go ahead try! Easier said than done right? Luckily we have a few simple simultaneous interpreter tips to help beginners practice!
Read – in both languages! Although this may seem odd since you want to practice speaking and listening, reading (especially about subjects which you interpret) increases your vocabulary and familiarity with what you’re listening to. This allows you to be comfortable with the topic and to focus on getting the meaning across, instead of little technicalities.
Train Your Memory – a good way to start preparing for a job in which you have to remember almost exactly what a person has said, is to make sure your memory is up to par. Try short-term memory challenges like repeating license plate numbers, or focusing in on one sentence in something you’re reading and trying to remember it a few paragraphs later.
Work On Listening – listen to a short clip in your native language and repeat word-for-word what is being said. Begin by pausing the clip and repeating the sentences exactly, one by one. Once you feel comfortable you can start repeating what you hear while the clip is playing (make sure to start a little behind the clip)!
Start With 1 Sentence – use the same clip from above. Listen to a sentence, pause to think about the interpretation, interpret, then move on to the next sentence. Do this over and over. The next step would be doing the same exercise, but interpreting the original sentence whilst listening to the next.
Record Yourself Interpreting– this will allow you to hear your pronunciation and practice getting an ear for certain words. It will also make you comfortable with the sound of your own voice (which you’ll be hearing a lot)!
Get more simultaneous interpreter tips and the high quality training you’ll need to become a professional interpreter with our Medical, Legal, and Business & Community Interpreter Training Programs! You’ll get the benefit of professional education and group feedback, allowing you to learn quickly!
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