Training seminar in Brazil: IT and blended learning in interpreter training

The Interpreter Diaries are off to Brazil! I’ve been asked by AIIC Brazil to run a workshop on IT and blended learning for interpreter trainers in the beautiful town of Curitiba on January 29-31, 2016.

This will be the fourth in a series of AIIC Training workshops on new technologies in interpreter training (following on from similar events held in Maputo, Paris and Seoul). The three-day course will be intensely practical, with hands-on sessions taking participants through the creation of their own online materials, guided tours of the virtual interpreting classroom, and more.

I’m told there are still four spots open on the course, so please spread the news to your colleagues in the Americas (note that attendees may be eligible to apply for a bursary to cover travel costs).

I’ll leave you with the blurb from the workshop’s registration page –  and I hope to see you in Brazil!

Photo courtesy of Gualberto107 at

IT is becoming an essential tool for students and trainers in all fields, and interpreter training can benefit enormously from technological developments. Virtual learning, a trend that has taken the world of post-secondary education by storm, can allow both established and up-and-coming interpreting programs to extend their reach while maximizing their use of resources, and enhance the training experience for both students and trainers.

In this hands-on workshop, Michelle Hof will take participants through topics such as:
Best practice in face-to-face and online interpreter training
Practical aspects of the virtual classroom and online learning platforms
Teaching and testing interpreting skills using virtual technology
Effective blended learning approaches
Leveraging online and offline resources in the interpreting classroom

Found in Translation: Book Review

This is just a quick note to let readers know that my review of Found in Translation, the new book by Nataly Kelly and Jost Zetzsche, has now been published. It’s been a long time coming (and my apologies to the authors for the delay), but I hope it was worth the wait!

My book review is one of the articles featured in the fall issue of AIIC’s webzine, which also includes pieces on the ALS/Capita court interpreting scandal in the UK, the onward march of technology in the interpreting profession, the various facets of professional ethics, and more.

To read my review of Found in Translation, click here.

To browse the fall issue of AIIC’s webzine, click here.

Happy reading!

Interpreters Tell the Story

Over the past few posts on the Diaries, I have been telling readers about some of the blogs I enjoy reading. In today’s post, I will add one last blog to that list. This one is of particular significance to me, and I’ll tell you why in a moment.

The AIIC Blog was launched last spring as part of the revamp of the main website of AIIC, the International Association of Conference Interpreters, of which I am a proud member. The blog’s tagline, “Interpreters tell the story,” promises an inside look at a broad range of topics related to the life of a conference interpreter, and that is precisely what it delivers. Recent posts have included a discussion on how government cutbacks might affect language policy, reflections on how techniques for glossary management have changed over the years, an entertaining rant about poor lighting conditions in booths, and even some ideas on the possible link between interpreting and jazz.

The blog is a collaborative effort, publishing regular articles from a number of veteran interpreter-bloggers, including Luigi Luccarelli, Phil Smith and Mary Fons, as well as guest posts and the occasional contribution by our President, Linda Fitchett. The more eagle-eyed among my readers may have noticed a familiar byline among all these names. For the past few months, I have been making regular contributions to its pages, telling stories from my own life as an interpreter. So far, I’ve talked about how a chance encounter in Brussels airport got me thinking about my own (mildly neurotic) relationship with the languages I speak, and I shared with readers what I did over the summer – or didn’t do, actually. And I have plenty more ideas brewing for future posts, so please stay tuned!

Here’s the quick way to find out what they’re talking about over at the AIIC Blog

If you would like to keep up with what is published on the AIIC Blog, all you have to do is add it to your RSS feed. By the way, while I’m on the topic of RSS feeds, I can’t pass up this opportunity to tell you about an interesting feature of the new AIIC website. Not only can you add the blog to your RSS feed, you can sign up for RSS updates on any number of interpreting-related topics. Whenever an article is posted anywhere on the website (not just the blog) that is related to the RSS feed you’ve chosen, you will get news of it in your feed. You can choose to receive news on more than a dozen topics, including freelancing for international organizations, getting started in the profession, training and research, conference equipment and standards, and others (consult the full list here). Cool, isn’t it?

Another nifty feature of the new website is its page of site sections, which offers a tidy little selection of past AIIC articles, all organized by topic. Visitors can navigate between about 30 different compilations. Here you’ll find articles on interpreting in conflict zones, memoirs talking about the history of the interpreting profession, overviews of global conference markets, tips for voice management, research findings and guidelines on remote interpreting, and much more.

Happy reading! I’ll be back soon with something other than a blog review…