Authors:
Huolingxiao KuangSchool of Modern Languages and Cultures, Durham University, Durham, England

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Binghan ZhengSchool of Modern Languages and Cultures, Durham University, Durham, England

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Abstract

This paper explores relationships between consecutive interpreting (CI) performance on the one hand, and interpreters' note-taking effort, note-taking product and note-reading effort, on the other hand. 20 professionals and 29 students consecutively interpreted two easy segments and two difficult segments in an English (L2) speech, with their eye fixations on the notes and handwriting on the digital pad being registered through eye-tracking and pen-recording methods. Both groups' CI performance showed positive but weak correlations with their note quantities in the easy segments, but not in the difficult ones. Almost no significant correlations were found between the students' interpretation quality and effort of note-taking, whereas the professionals' CI performance was negatively correlated with their cognitive effort of note-taking. Significant but weak correlations were observed in both groups between their note-reading effort and interpreting performance, but the students' correlations were mainly found in the difficult segments, and the professionals' correlations were mostly detected in the easy ones. Overall, the interpreters' note-taking behaviour was not closely associated with their interpretation quality, and the associations varied across interpreter groups and task difficulties. These findings suggest that note-taking should be taught more judiciously in interpreter training programs and applied more prudently in interpreting practice.

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