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Simultaneous interpreting is a real-time form of interpreting generally used when participants need to follow in real-time. Since the interpreter must translate the sentence into the target language while simultaneously listening to and comprehending the next sentence, it is a very difficult task, which requires two interpreters as well as a soundproof booth with a microphone and headphones for the audience. Alternatively, simultaneous translation can be performed with a portable bidule system or, if the group of foreign participants is small, with the interpreter whispering the translation in their ears (chuchotage).
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In consecutive interpreting, interpreters listen to the speaker for a determined amount of time (approx. 5 to 10 minutes), take notes and subsequently convey the original message in the target language. Consecutive is used for events with a limited number of participants, highly technical meetings, or when only one or two foreign speakers take the floor.
Unlike simultaneous interpreting, consecutive does not entail extra costs for translation equipment.
Liaison interpreting in business and community settings
In liaison interpreting short passages are translated by the interpreter without any equipment or notes. It is mainly used in business meetings or trips, press conferences, in on-site inspections at building sites or companies, during official visits and dinners, as well as in hospitals or at police stations.
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