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Hello, community!

I'm almost 3 months into my training at Newcastle University now. What I found is that this program is very student-centered (as was warned by the director of the program) in that there are fewer contact hours (about 6-10 hours) comparatively, there is no sperate module for each language direction, and teachers would remain in a passive role in classroom exercises.

So I'm a bit disoriented at this moment. The limited contact hours make it seems like there's a huge leap between sessions. Public speaking, active listening, memory enhancement - all these important topics are briefly covered in lectures. I assume what lecturers teach in the classroom is meant to be guidance and we are responsible to work on it on our own. But there's simply too much to work on and I am a bit concerned about whether I can get out as much from this program as my peers in other programs do.

So any suggestions?

asked 21 Nov '17, 17:55

EliChang's gravatar image


Hi Eli That number of hours is not unusual. The rest of the time you should be practising in groups with other students. In the practise groups try to work on whatever the focus of the contact hours was.

You can find fairly detailed ideas about how to set up practise groups in 2 books your university library should have

Conference Interpreting – A Complete Course, Robin Setton & Andrew Dawrant (In the annex to the Chapter on Consecutive I think, and perhaps elsewhere as well)

A Student's Practice Book, Andrew Gillies The whole of Part A of the book deals with practice. Part of that is available here at Interpreter Training Resources

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answered 22 Nov '17, 04:25

Andy's gravatar image


edited 22 Nov '17, 06:04


Hi Andy. Thank you for your recommendations and for being so helpful as always!

(22 Nov '17, 04:28) EliChang

nb see the little edit/addition above with a link to ITR

(22 Nov '17, 06:03) Andy

Hi Eli,

I agree with Andy, that it is not unusual to have fewer contact hours during sn interpretation course than you would expect going in. We were always told (and I still tell my students) that class should be seen as a supervised practice session of the many hours of practice you should be doing both on your own and in groups. You should be practicing on average 1-2 hours per every contact hour, assuming you have enough hours in the day!

Here is another document on practice, to add to the resources Andy has provided.

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answered 07 Dec '17, 07:03

JuliaP's gravatar image


hi, Julia. Thank you for the very useful resource! I will definitely read it through over this holiday!

(16 Dec '17, 05:55) EliChang

Like Andy and Julia said- you're supposed to be doing work groups outside of class (you're doing them, right????) and working with your classmates "teaching" each other and learning together. So if your classmates aren't very dedicated and/or aren't cooperating with work groups- talk to them ASAP, because you're each other's greatest help!

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answered 15 Dec '17, 20:11

InesdC's gravatar image



Hi, InesdC. I am doing a bit of study group (albeit less frequently than desirable). You made a fair point about talking to people in my group. We need to motivate each other and practice more.

(16 Dec '17, 05:57) EliChang
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question asked: 21 Nov '17, 17:55

question was seen: 1,887 times

last updated: 27 Dec '17, 04:06 is a community-driven website open to anyone with questions and/or answers about interpreting, i.e. spoken language translation

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