Interpreter Training Resources

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Getting started in the profession

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Starting work

Chris Guichot de Fortis is senior staff interpreter at NATO Headquarters in Brussels. He teaches interpreting and examines at several Belgian and British interpreting schools. He is also the Director of the renowned Cambridge Conference Interpreting Course (CCIC) for experienced practising conference interpreters.

In the file at the end of this link he offers essential, practical and extensive advice to young interpreters starting out in the profession, including, a model contract. (Last update, November 2013)

Getting started

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 Contents list of 'Getting started' page

I)          Where do you want or need to live?  (Go where you are special…)

II)         Apply for a post as a lector/assistant (in an interpreting school)

            abroad, or as intern in a consulate or embassy.


III)        Use it or lose it! - if you have to work to live, keep practicing your interpretation


IV)       Acquire or improve, ASAP, the specific technical and professional skills which you

            may well still lack !


V)        Acquire a USP

VI)       Your professional toolbox

VII)     Understanding the market and competition

VIII)     Freelance or staff interpretation?

IX)       Administrative steps for freelancers

X)        Rates and tariffs

XI)       Professional behavior and ethics

XII)     Your wardrobe

XIII)    Consortia, secretariats and agencies

XIV)    Volunteer jobs: working for NGOs

XV)      Contact any and everything ‘bilateral’ that uses your language combination


XVI)    Accreditation tests for major international organizations

XVII)    AIIC Pre-candidacy 

XVIII)   The AIIC handbook’s list of the main employers of interpreters

XIX)     If I fail to obtain my diploma, can I still hope to work as a conference interpreter ?           


XX)      Study the openings in the world of ‘Public Service interpreting’.


XXI)     Useful links for information and training


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