Consecutive vs. Simultaneous Interpretation

What’s the difference and why it’s important.

What Is Consecutive Interpretation?

During consecutive interpretation, the speaker and interpreter take turns. Pauses or breaks in the conversation are made so the interpreter can relay the information to those who need it.

Consecutive interpretation is commonly used in depositions, court hearings, doctor visits, interviews and similar instances when interactive communication is preferred.

What Is Simultaneous Interpretation?

During simultaneous interpretation, the interpreter speaks at the same time as the presenter. Equipment is used, such as a transmitter for the interpreter to speak into, and receivers and headsets for the audience.

Simultaneous interpretation is most commonly used for conferences, trainings and other instances where the information shared is primarily one-way (i.e. presenter to audience.)

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  • “ITC has been able to provide specialized service to cope with our foreign language needs. We recently had an urgent need to complete a project in a not very common language (Bambara). ITC team was quickly able to deliver high quality service within the deadline. We are very satisfied with their service and will certainly reach out to ITC for assistance in the future.”

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  • “Wow – What a pleasant surprise!  A company that makes working with them super!  ITC’s team has our thanks for their continued efforts on our projects.  They manage to translate, proofread, design and deliver our projects, ahead of schedule and within or under budget.  Their quality is exceptional and their customer service is exemplary!”