Interpreter literally means a person who carries or transfers a message from a sender to a receiver. Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary defines it as “someone whose job is to change what someone else is saying into another language”.

Introduction (Example):

Service Provider:

(to LEP) “Hello Mr.Khay. I am Mrs.Jamson”


(in Khmer) “Hello Mr. Khay. I am Mrs.Jamson”

(in English) “Hello Mrs.Jamson. I am Sopheak; I have been sent by KEEN Languages Interpreter Services to interpret for your appointment with Mr.Khay today. First of all, please speak to the client directly; I will interpret everything you say exactly as you say it. I’ll do the same for the client. Also, please pause often when you speak so that I can interpret accurately. If I feel that I am getting behind, I will raise my hand to ask you to stop. If I feel that clarification is needed, I will ask for additional information. If it appears that there is a language -or culture-based misunderstanding, I will interrupt the session in order to resolve it. It may be necessary for me to take notes. These will be destroyed at the end of the session. Please, understand that everything you say is confidential. My Code of Ethics doesn’t allow me to repeat anything that is said in this conference. I would now like to take a moment to give Mr.Khay the same information”.

(in English) “If there is no question, I will begin to interpret”.

Points Rated

Users’ Expectation Survey by Mozer et al:  completeness of rendition (87%), correct terminology (87%), clarity of expression (73%)

For survey conducted by A.M.Mesa, the  purchasers of community interpreter rated the quality and behavior of interpreter, as follow: fully bilingual (96%), ensures confidentiality (95%), point out lack of understanding (92%), not judgmental (91%),interpretation is faithful to speaker’s intended meaning (90%), provide cultural explanations/interpretation during session (62%).

Languages and Communication Skills

– Has native-like mastery of both languages with excellent command of the grammar, syntax, and vocabulary of both languages

–  Has clear, distinct pronunciation

–   Understands the dialectal varieties of English and the foreign language, and can determine each speaker’s language skills and dialects

–  Understand non-verbal communication, and different communication styles

–   Has excellent listening and recall skills

Code of Ethics & Professionalism

Before the interpretation

– Dress appropriately

– Arrive early

– Report to correct person

– Have identification

– Turn off your phone

–  Avoid contact with the LEP

At start of the interpretation

– Position yourself to best facilitate communication among all parties, unless otherwise directed

–  Ensure good visibility of all parties

– Remain at the appointed location until ended or dismissed

– Avoid conducting personal or other business

After the interpretation session

– Maintain confidentiality

– Commit to lifelong learning

– Take available courses or examinations to obtain accreditation and/or certification

– Maintain membership in appropriate professional associations of interpreters and complies with the code of ethics of such associations

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