In our twenty years in business, we here at Languages Unlimited have developed an extensive catalogue of services to offer our clients. Among the most popular of these services is language interpretation, which we regularly provide to citizens, businesses, and government bodies throughout California. But what is language interpretation and are our language interpretation services right for you?
What is Language Interpretation?
Language interpretation is the translation of one language into another. But unlike traditional translation, which is commonly performed on paper, language interpretation is performed verbally. California is a state of more than 10 million immigrants, many of whom do not speak English. These non-English speakers often call on us to interpret for them during USCIS interviews. Our interpretation services have also been retained by English-speaking businesses in California to allow them to communicate with overseas clients and secure foreign investments.
Simultaneous Interpretation vs. Consecutive Interpretation
Language interpretation can be broken down into two primary categories: simultaneous interpretation and consecutive interpretation. Simultaneous interpretation, as its name suggests, is performed by a speaker’s interpreter while they are still talking. It is most common in high-profile gatherings, such as meetings of the United Nations, where each delegate listens to an interpretation of what is being said in their preferred language via a headset.
Consecutive interpretation is common in less intense situations where time isn’t as limited. In consecutive interpretation, your interpreter will speak only after you have completed a thought, conveying it to the listener in their own language. The interpreter will then verbally translate the listener’s reply into your language.
Both simultaneous and consecutive interpretation have their pros and cons and we have outlined the most noteworthy below.
Simultaneous interpretation is a timely method of understanding what has been said. It allows two or more parties to communicate in real-time regardless of the language barrier.
Simultaneous interpretation generally isolates interpreters in soundproof booths. This allows multiple interpreters to work at once without risk of interrupting each other.
Because simultaneous interpretation requires soundproof booths for interpreters, as well as specialized headsets, it can prove quite expensive.
Isolating interpreters means that they cannot be spoken to during proceedings. This, of course, means the listener cannot respond to what is being said to them.
Consecutive interpretation is markedly more personal than simultaneous interpretation and allows a genuine relationship to be forged between the interacting parties. This can be advantageous when it comes to passing an interview or closing a business deal.
No specialized equipment is required for consecutive interpretation. This makes it a more convenient – not to mention more affordable – alternative to simultaneous interpretation.
Because consecutive interpretation requires the speaking party to pause every couple of seconds to allow the interpreter to translate what has been said, it can take almost twice as long as simultaneous interpretation.
Consecutive interpretation can become complicated when more than two languages are being spoken at a time and can lead to interpreters speaking over.
Here at Languages Unlimited, we boast one of the widest language selections of any interpretation agency in California. We offer interpretations in a total of 275 languages, including Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Arabic, Hindi, and Vietnamese. We even provide interpretation in American sign language.
Accessing Our Services
Unlike many other translation agencies operating in California, we at Languages Unlimited do not restrict ourselves to one city. We keep large pools of interpreters in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, and several other large metropolitan areas of California. This allows us to offer our on-site and over-the-phone language interpretation services all across the Golden State.
Because so many newly-arrived immigrants rely on Languages Unlimited to translate the personal documents they require before they can even begin applying for work in California, we make a conscious effort to keep our prices low and our services affordable. Contact us for a quote on our language interpretation services and find out what Languages Unlimited can do for you.