Simultaneous interpretation, or synchronous interpretation, refers to a way of interpretation where the interpreter orally renders what he/she hears in the source language into the content in the target language synchronously and continuously. It features high efficiency, with an average interval of 3 to 4 seconds (10 plus seconds at most) between the original sentence and interpretation. It consequently guarantees the speakers’ consecutive speech can continue without interruption and facilitates the listeners’ comprehension of the speech as a whole. Simultaneous interpretation usually applies to formal international conferences and has high requirements on interpreters.
Simultaneous interpretation requires specialized interpretation equipment, including the main unit, headsets, and interpreter booth.
Simultaneous interpretation has extremely high requirements on interpreters and only specially trained personnel are capable of such jobs. During a simultaneous interpretation process, an interpreter must entirely concentrate on the on-going conference, so the process is extremely stressful and taxing. Usually, two interpreters are arranged to interpret in turns, with each interpreter work in shift of 20 minutes.
For meetings requiring simultaneous interpretation, the following factors should be taken into consideration:
Expenditure: Simultaneous interpretation costs a much higher price than consecutive interpretation. Its service fee consists of the interpreter's remuneration, transport and accommodation expenses, equipment rental fees, and overtime rates.
Background information: For a meeting involving highly professional knowledge, it is recommended that background information about the meeting be sent to the translation company in advance. In this way, the interpreter can get acquainted with relevant technologies and guest information before hand.
Arrangement: Meetings requiring simultaneous interpretation are usually large-scale or international conferences, so the translation companies that handle such tasks must have strong arrangement capabilities and sufficient backup resources, and they must also be highly responsive to emergencies and resilient to risks.
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