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Interpreting with a dictionary?
Thread poster: Theodore Quester

Theodore Quester  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 09:42
French to English
+ ...
Dec 12, 2001

Is it a faux pas or accepted practice to bring a dictionary along to an interpreting assignment? I need to interpret for a deposition tommorow and I am a little nervous. What if the discussion gets technical outside of my areas of expertise?



Thanks

Theodore Quester


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Catherine Bolton  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:42
Member (2002)
Italian to English
+ ...
Bring it! Dec 12, 2001

Of course you should bring a dictionary. I never go on a job like that without a regular Italian/English plus, in a case like yours, a legal one.

You are simply demonstrating your expertise and desire to do the very best job possible. It isn\'t a test!


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Anila Mayhew  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:42
English to Albanian
+ ...
It's a must. Dec 12, 2001

Having a dictionary with you on a job doesn\'t mean at all that you are not a good interpreter, on the contrary it shows that you want to do a good job.



However, I have a suggestion. It would be a lot easier if you developed glossaries in the areas you have a lot of work so that it is easier for you to find a term. For example, having a printed copy of a glossary of legal terms when you are at a deposition makes the job easier and you can even review the terms if you are on a break or something.



Good luck!



Anila Mayhew


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Ulrike Lieder  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:42
English to German
+ ...
Bring it! Dec 13, 2001

I always take a dictionary (or 2, 3, 4... and/or my laptop) to depositions (and into the booth, for that matter).



Anila\'s suggestion to develop a glossary is an excellent one, but I know from my own experience with depositions that one often doesn\'t get any prep materials in advance, so it\'s sometimes impossible to develop a job-specific glossary.



Go ahead and bring any dictionaries that you feel might be useful in the course of the deposition. You may not have the time to look up anything until the parties take a break, but it\'s certainly accepted practice (and it adds a certain measure of comfort - think of it as a sort of security blanket).


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Magno  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:42
Spanish to English
+ ...
You need a dictionary and a notebook Dec 13, 2001

I\'ve been an interpreter for the courts in the US. A good dictionary (better if dictionary matches the theme) and a notebook are a must. The notebook is to write down numbers, addresses, names, titles, etc. or anything else. Good luck!

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Karin Walker  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 15:42
German to English
+ ...
Gor for it! Dec 13, 2001

I\'ve worked with AIIC (!) members in a booth and some of them bring piles of books with them (just make sure it\'s not your run of the mill Collins, PONS or Langenscheidt or whatever - that WOULD look bad). Sometimes you\'re only given information or speeches on the day. If you have a minute, or an hour to prepare, dictionaries are great for going through your documents and preparing a small glossary.



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Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:42
French to English
Dictionary and notebook Dec 13, 2001

Absolute musts. Even a comprehensive general dictionary is useful. Don\'t worry about it looking bad - it doesn\'t. Judges sit with weighty tomes of statue books and so on in full view of the full court. No-one really expects them to recall every single letter of the law. What is expected is that thye know where to find them. Having a word on the tip of your tongue and not being able to talk round it, or worse still, drying up altogther looks even worse. Protect your credibility by putting everything you can on your side to do the job to the best of your ability, and with confidence!



This is too late now, probably, but for future interpreting assignments, where posible, have a talk with those involved beforehand. Of course, this is not always possible. Insist if you can, even just 10 mins, you may get half an hour.



One of my (positive and memorable) interpreting assignments was a conference on fishing, the Nile perch to be exact. I spent 50 minutes with the main speakers the day beforehand and worked on their glossaries with them. They even urged me to bill that time - and paid it!

[ This Message was edited by: on 2001-12-13 20:28 ]


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Hinara  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:42
Member (2011)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Review Sep 27, 2002

Yes, I bring my golssary and a notebook. Also, if time permits and you know the topic in advances, review specialized glossaries.

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