What is Simultaneous Interpreting?

During simultaneous interpreting, the interpreters listen to, analyze and interpret the presentation or speech at the same time and same rate of delivery as the person speaking. It is the most challenging mode of interpreting that requires specialized skills. Simultaneous interpreters usually work in pairs and alternate interpreting regularly (2-3 times an hour) in order to maintain accuracy and completeness throughout the presentation. This type of interpreting often requires special equipment, such as a microphone and a transmitter for an interpreter and headphones and a receiver for the listener(s). In large conference settings, interpreters often work in special interpreter booths.

When to Use Simultaneous Interpreting

Simultaneous mode is the most effective way to provide seamless message delivery into another language (or multiple languages) to a large group during conferences or lengthy training seminars. It is also used in the situations where it is not feasible for a speaker to pause for an interpreter, such as court proceedings, news broadcasts, and others.

Example of Simultaneous Interpreting

Source: United States Courts

Simultaneous and Consecutive Interpreting

Source: United States Courts