Interpreting 101

Some of my friends ask me about how to be a good interpreter; the exercises, tips and tricks. So I decided to write it down and post it for everyone else who might want to learn.
Remember, that this is my list that I produced from my experience. Feel free to add or make a comment.

Hope this helps

– Try to understand a song/movie without reading the text and while you’re doing something else, e.g. Ironing,folding your clothes, etc.

-Try to speak foreign language you want to master and record it. Listen again or ask someone who understand the language to listen. Can you/they understand what you’re saying?

-Listen or watch speeches. Take notes. As short as possible. Read the notes. Can you restate what’s in the note verbally and fluently?

-Ask for the brief before an event. Familiarize yourself with the context and terms IN ADVANCE.

-Check if any device is provided or you should provide one. Don’t underestimate technical issues;it can have great impact to your interpretation quality at times.

-If you never use a device before, familiarize yourself before the duty starts. Make sure you’re in the right channel and turn on/off the device appropriately.

-Do not copy other interpreter style. Be yourself and always confident.

-If you’re not confident, your mind messed up with you, and you CAN’t focus.

-Lose focus=lose everything

-Bring your own water bottle. Don’t assume the client will provide one for you. Better to have extra than none, and you’ll dry your throat resulting to lose focus and concentration.

-Work out regularly. Fit body means good blood circulation to the brain which helps you to enhance your working performance. No pass out during field visits as well.

-Read the news everyday. It helps you to stay updated with the current world issues and pick up a new word everyday.

-Stay in touch with your colleagues. You might need their help and they might need yours.

-Always improve yourself. Professionaly and personally.


Author: Maria Ambarastuti

A wife, a worker, a dreamer. trying to live her life to the fullest and continue to search for ways to enrich life. drop me an email for further chats:

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