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Differences Between Simultaneous Translation And Consecutive Translation


There are several modes of interpretation, but the two main categories are simultaneous translation and consecutive translation.

Simultaneous Translation

Simultaneous translation, as the name implies, is the translation that is done concurrently. That is, the interpreter performs the translation while listening to the message. This is usually done from interpretation booths to isolate the sound, and then the audio is transmitted to the audience receivers.

This type of translation is quite common in mass events. Perhaps you have witnessed this service at television events such as awards, sporting events, conferences, news, or press conferences.

Consecutive Translation

On the contrary, consecutive translation is a modality that is performed with intermediate pauses. In this case, the interpreter does not translate while the speaker is speaking. First, listen to the message, retain the information, and then do the translation. Like simultaneous translation, it is possible to do it in several languages ​​, but this is impractical since several pauses would have to be made to convey the message. In addition, this process could lose a lot of information if the intervention time is too long. Think of it as if it were the “broken phone” game. Someone may change the message halfway.

For this reason, consecutive translation is not usually used in mass events as opposed to simultaneous translation. This modality works best with small meetings, customer service, informal events.

Simultaneous Translation Vs. Consecutive Translation

It is not about whether one modality is better than the other, but about whether it is appropriate according to each case. We cannot say that consecutive translation is better than simultaneous translation, or vice versa. We must think in context.

That is, as I mentioned earlier, simultaneous translations are more appropriate in contexts that involve more people, less time, more languages like in the Korean translation [terjemahan bahasa korea which is the term in Indonesia], ​​and even larger spaces.

In contrast, consecutive translations are ideal for small events, with few people and limited languages.

Consider, for example, a business meeting. Usually, the most relevant people of each organization meet in a small space. Only one boardroom may be necessary, and multimedia material is rarely needed. In this case, it is more convenient to use a consecutive translator.