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I heard, people separate both ears in conference interpreting, one is used to listen to original language, the other to monitor the interpreted language; in addition, the right ear is used for the original language.

I tried and found my left ear works better in listening to original language, while I read right brain is better in memorizing, especially picturizing the text and facilitating the delivery. Due to bad habit or wrong thinking, people may go about and away from the right path, but experience may tell better than theory.

Will any senior/ experienced conference interpreter help me out? Thanks in advance.

asked 17 Aug '12, 08:41

Paris%20Si%20de%20Chine's gravatar image

Paris Si de ...

edited 17 Aug '12, 09:56

Delete's gravatar image

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I think it's a personal thing. I use my right hear to listen to the original and with my left I listen a little less to the original (with the headphone half off) and to my self. But when I was a student it was the other way around. And I know plenty of working interpreters who listen left, and plenty who listen right. The best thing to do is to experiment and see what works best for you.

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answered 17 Aug '12, 13:03

Andy's gravatar image


Andrew, thanks for sharing this precious experience with me. This answers my question very well. Thanks again. :-)

(17 Aug '12, 20:03) Paris Si de ...

Andy is of course right :-), there's no such thing as a trick of the trade about which ear one uses for what purpose (I for one keep both covered by the headphones) hemisphere usage - as you'll discover as you keep on reading :-) - depends on a great many things, such as gender, right or left-handedness, age at which one started learning one's languages, etc

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answered 18 Aug '12, 06:36

msr's gravatar image


Yes, MSR. Practice and fact will come as it should be. I will move on. Thanks. :-)

(18 Aug '12, 20:08) Paris Si de ...
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question asked: 17 Aug '12, 08:41

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last updated: 18 Aug '12, 20:08 is a community-driven website open to anyone with questions and/or answers about interpreting, i.e. spoken language translation

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