Simultaneous and Consecutive Translation

We can divide interpretation into two. One of them is simultaneous; the other one is consecutive translation. Simultaneous translation is a type in which the translation is done while the speaker is speaking. This translation type is done in a cabin, with a microphone and headphone which provides the instrumental communication between the speaker and audiences.

Consecutive translation is a translation type which is done after the speech of the speaker is finished. The translator who does consecutive translation has to use his/her short-term memory effectively. Also s/he has to note the numbers, names and place names. Sometimes the text which will be translated can be given to you. This is sometimes an advantage and sometimes a disadvantage. Sometimes the speaker can go away from the text. So, the translator has to be very careful.  Sometimes the translator has to read the text of the speaker. The translator has to be ready for such situation. The translator should be competent as a speaker, shouldn’t be excited, stressed and panic, and should speak comprehensible. The translator shouldn’t have a respiratory problem because s/he always uses a microphone. The translator should be used to do translation before crowd. A good translator should know fast reading techniques.

It is not enough that the translator knows the two languages. s/he has to know the culture, history, social structure, geography etc. of the them and has to be specialized in the field s/he will do simultaneous translation. If not s/he must do a preliminary study about the field s/he will do the translation. Being a master of the subject will provide confidence to the translator. The translator has to express the graphics and schemes used during the speech clearly. Sometimes the speaker can express the things s/he wants to say in a wrong way. The translator has to be careful in such situation and has to translate it in a right way. The translator has to be familiar to the system in the cabin. If the speaker speaks very fast and the translator cannot do the translation s/he can warn the speaker. In Consecutive translation the translator listens to the speech and takes notes. The speech duration can last for 6-7 minutes. And this is a long duration. So, the translator will lay on his/her long term memory. The only thing which will facilitate the work of the translator is taking good notes. The translator cannot always have the chance to sit down. So, the notebook on which s/he will take notes shall be hard covered. S/he has to use the page purposive. S/he has to note the main idea; otherwise long notes could affect him/her negatively. S/he has to especially note the percentages, dates, names. The translator can develop special codes for him/herself in order to use the time effectively. The translator shall use his/her body language well while doing the consecutive translation. The translator shall start his/her translation as soon as the speaker finishes his/her speech. Otherwise, forgetting can start.

Written by: EGE KARAKAYA

We have dealt with the important points of doing Oral Translation.

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