Students in the Conference Interpreting master’s programme regularly hold mock conferences. These cover a wide range of topics, from physics and geography to music, linguistics, and politics to medicine. Presentations are given in either German or another language and are simultaneously interpreted into German, English, French, Spanish, Russian, and Arabic by the students in the interpreting booths. Audience members can select the language in which they would like to follow the presentation.

Blick in die Dolmetschtrainingsanlage des Instituts für Angewandte Linguistik und Translatologie
Blick in die Dolmetschtrainingsanlage des Instituts für Angewandte Linguistik und Translatologie (IALT) Foto: Tinka Reichmann

Simulated conferences for practical training

The mock conferences are a good opportunity for students to practice interpreting under realistic conditions and in front of an audience. The conferences are open events which can be attended by anyone who is interested in interpreting as well as the topics that will be interpreted.

The mini mock conference

Mini mock conferences are held every other week on Thursdays from 5:15 to 6:45 p.m. in the interpreting training facility at Neues Augusteum. Generally, there are two presentations plus discussion per conference. Anyone who is interested is warmly invited, whether to better understand the world of simultaneous interpreting or simply to listen to an interesting presentation. The mini mock conferences are normally held at a two-week interval during term. You can find out more about the current programme on our website under “Aktuelles”.

The big mock conference

In addition to the mini mock conferences taking place every other week, students in the M. A. Conference Interpreting organize a big mock conference held once a year in the summer semester. This simulated conference is a half-day event with an audience and simultaneous interpreting. Each conference has an overarching theme that all speakers will address in their presentations. The range of topics is wide. In the past, big mock conferences covered political, scientific, and social themes. Presentations are given in either German or another language and are simultaneously interpreted into German, English, French, Spanish, Russian, and Arabic by the students in the interpreting booths. Typically, there are five or six presentations plus discussion. Anyone who is interested is warmly invited, whether to better understand the world of simultaneous interpreting or simply to listen to an interesting presentation.

Find out more about our mock conferences

The programmes are available for you to download (pdf).

  • 2021 – Environment and Digitization
    Programme
  • 2019 – Populism
    Programme
  • 2018 – Water
    Programme
  • 2017 – The European Union turns 60
    Programme
  • 2016 – Nutrition and Health
    Programme
  • 2015 – Traduciendo entre culturas: un camino de ida y vuelta entre Alemania y España
    Programme
  • 2014 – Migration
    Programme
  • 2013 – Climate Change: Effects and Adaptation
    Programme
  • 2012 – Supporting Entrepreneurship
    Programme
  • 2010 – 20 Years of German Unity – Economic Transformation and Social Change
    Programme

Mock conference with AIIC Interpreters 2019

On 15 November 2019, students in the M. A. Conference Interpreting at IALT were offered the unique opportunity to share their booths with professional interpreters. For many years, the Institute of Applied Linguistics and Translatology (IALT) has cooperated with the Association Internationale des Interprètes de Conférence (AIIC), one of the most renowned professional organizations for conference interpreters worldwide. As part of this cooperation, a workshop was held on 15 November 2019 where presentations given in English, French, and Spanish were simultaneously interpreted into German and two of the other languages. The workshop was based on a concept familiar to the future interpreters at IALT. Their biweekly mock conferences also offer them the opportunity to test their interpreting skills in a simulated conference.

In the AIIC workshop, however, students did not share their booths with classmates as they do in the mock conferences. This time, they teamed up with members of AIIC, an organization that has existed since 1953. The students were not only able to watch professionals at work, but to receive feedback from practitioners on their own interpreting performances as well. This included assessments of overall impression and linguistic expression in the target language, but also advice on techniques and strategies as well as behaviour in the booth.

The range of topics was as wide as on the actual interpreting market. While Felicity Parker and Pauline Courvalin from IALT gave presentations on post-partum depression and autism spectrum disorder, Conrado Portugal from AIIC spoke about reality shows.

After the conference and during the young professionals’ night held by AIIC on the same day, students had the opportunity to forge contacts and have their burning questions answered.

Tinka Reichmann

Photos of the conference

Vortragender und Publikum in der Dolmetschtrainingsanlage.
Blick auf die Dolmetschkabinen
Blick in die Dolmetschtrainigsanlage
Ein Rundtischgespräch in mehreren Sprachen stellt Dolmetschende vor besondere Herausforderungen.
aufmerksame Zuhörer bei der Mock-Konferenz in der Dolmetschtrainingsanlage.

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Information on the programme

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Service Learning

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I study interpreting

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