Interpreting vs Translation

Interpreting Vs Translation Services

Interpreting Vs Translation Services

Do you know the difference between interpreting vs translation services? Did you know there is a difference between interpreting and translation? Most people use the world translation when they mean interpreting. 

Both terms, interpreting and translation, are closely related to linguistic disciplines. The big surrounding interpreting vs translation services is that both terms relate to professions that are typically performed by people different skill sets. 

An interpreter coverts thoughts and expressions in a source language to a target language orally, whereas a translator does the same thing with written text. A translator analyzes a written text and transfers it from a source language to a target language.

This article focuses on interpreting. Interpreting is an oral or verbal form of interpretation, facilitating real-time cross-linguistic communication. An interpreter repeats what the speaker has said in a different language. Also, interpretation signifies the tangible product of this practice. A description of severn different methods of interpreting is explained later in this article. 

Translating is the conversion of the meaning of a source-language text, performed by one or more translators, into an equivalent target-language text. The result of translating is a translation. Many forms of interpreting exist; simultaneous interpreting, consecutive interpreting, whisper interpreting, travel/escort interpreting, telephone interpreting, American Sign Lange (ASL) interpreting, and tactile interpreting. 

Simultaneous Interpretingperhaps the most famous type of interpreting, occurs when an interpreter processes an oral thought or expression from the source language of a person speaking and converts that information into the target language by repeating what was said or expressed while listening to the next sentence to repeat the process. Simultaneous is somewhat of a misnomer in that the interpreter cannot concurrently repeat what the speaker is saying until the interpreter completely understands the context of what the speaker is saying. This process usually takes between five and ten seconds to happen, and the delay is called a lag. 

Summits, conferences, trade shows, large meetings, and other significant events typically utilize simultaneous interpreting. This type of interpreting requires interpretation equipment. The interpreters usually work in a tabletop or full booth, and their voices are transmitted either to the listeners’ headsets. 

Consecutive Interpreting is another popular form of communicating a source language to a target language. While consecutive interpreting occurs, the speaker pauses every so often, and then the interpreter delivers what the speaker said into the target language. The use of this type of interpreting typically occurs for small settings, such as small business meetings, courtroom testimony, doctor appointments, and one-on-one meetings. No special equipment is necessary for consecutive interpreting. Interpreters take notes to help them recall all of the information that is said, especially numbers and dates. 

Whisper Interpreting is akin to simultaneous interpreting; however, the interpreters do not utilize equipment. The interpreter positions himself or herself next to the listener(s) and speaks softly or whispers while communicating in the target language. This type of interpreting typically occurs in settings where one person receives communication in the target language. 

Travel/Escort Interpreting is like having a personal language assistant. These types of interpreters usually follow the client to meetings, act as cultural liaisons, and do everything from helping their principals negotiate million-dollar deals to booking travel arrangements. 

Telephone Interpreting (OPI Interpretation or Over-the-Phone) occurs consecutively or simultaneously over the telephone. With OPI, the parties are unable to see one another. Most of the time, this type of interpreting is consecutive. Another similar type of interpreting is video-remote interpreting (VRI), that allows the parties to see the interpreter. 

American Sign Language is a type of interpreting that requires facial expressions, body language, and signs to communicate information. Syntax, morphology, phonology, and more are essential assets in this form of communicating. Hearing-impaired and deaf persons use ASL as defined by the International Standards Organization. ASL interpreting is a multifaceted field of work requiring the management of interpersonal, environmental, and linguistic matters. ASL interpreters are in high demand and there are not enough to fulfill market needs. 

Tactile Signing is a type of interpreting that is unknown to many people. However, it is a prevalent form of communicating with people who are hearing and visually impaired. Touch is the method that tactile interpreters use to communicate with the recipients. Sometimes the term “hand-over-hand” is used to represent tactile signing. 


For more information regarding interpreting vs translation services please contact Capital Linguists

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Philip Rosen

Philip Rosen

Capital Linguists’ certified translation service and interpreters service was founded on Philip’s vision of a super-elite translation and interpreting force. Drawing on other high level interpreters and translators, he leads an exclusive cadre of highly skilled, professional language specialists.

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