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Creating Good VIBE (Virtual Interpreting Booth Experience)

  • October 14, 2021
  • 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM

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Creating Good VIBE (Virtual Interpreting Booth Experience)
Practical guide on how to set up your home virtual interpreting booth for effective RI

This session is intended for interpreters
who wish to improve their remote interpreting skills on Zoom and other platforms.


Setting up your virtual interpreting booth could seem intimidating. But you don’t need to be a technical guru to be well prepared to work remotely. During this 2.5-hour course participants will examine office set up options, discuss how to see and hear better, how to look and sound professional while interpreting during virtual meetings and conferences. We will talk about how to do it without spending a lot of money or having more than a basic knowledge of the modern gadgets. Presenters will share what works for them and during the interactive part participants will be invited to share examples of functional workspaces and technical set ups of their choice. We will talk about wired vs. wireless, real vs. virtual backgrounds, zoom functions, which are particularly useful for the interpreters, good lighting, best camera positions, headsets, back channels of communication, and some other professional tools and tricks of the trade, which help effectively work in the virtual interpreting booth and ensure seamless microphone handovers. Zoom speakers often use videos, PowerPoint Presentations, virtual whiteboards, Google slides, and more. Proper set up and preparation will reduce stress during the meeting, prevent confusion, and eliminate disappointing mishaps. We will talk about preparation, covering some techniques, which involve the use of computer translation software. We will also explain how an external monitor can simplify the interpreter’s task to track the materials being presented and retain a good gallery view of the speakers, participants, and fellow interpreters.

Instructors bios:

Elena S. Bell


Originally from Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Elena S. Bell now calls Portland, OR her home. She graduated from Monterey Institute of International Studies (Presently Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey) with an MA in Translation and Interpreting. Elena offers 23 years’ experience as a U.S. Department of State Contract Interpreter – she works with Russian–speaking delegations, which come to the U.S. from eleven different countries. As a freelancer she interprets at conferences, seminars, negotiations, workshops, court hearings, interviews, lectures, and cultural events. Elena taught Russian language at Humboldt State University (CA) and worked as a freelance Russian language translator, instructor, and cultural consultant for Internews International. She taught courses at the Department of State Language Services. She conducts educational presentations for school, college, and university students. As an American Councils for International Education Academic Fellowship in Russia recipient and a U.S. Department of Education Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellow, Elena Bell is completing her doctoral degree in International Studies at the University of Washington (Seattle). Since the onset of the pandemic, Elena has quickly adapted to the new remote interpreting requirements, and successfully completed many assignments from her home virtual interpreting booth.

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Julia Mogilev


Julia Mogilev holds an M.A. in Translation and Interpretation (Russian <> English) from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS) and a BA in Teaching English as a Foreign Language from Moscow State Pedagogical University (Russia). While living in Moscow, Julia  taught English as a second language at the Department of Foreign Languages in her alma mater. Since moving to the U.S. she has been working as a freelance conference interpreter, a contract seminar interpreter and course instructor for the Office of Language Services at the U.S. Department of State, and a CCHI certified healthcare interpreter (Core-CHI).

Julia’s experience as a freelance interpreter includes working with international organizations, industry leaders and educational institutions at annual meetings, conferences, executive briefings, special events and training programs. As a healthcare interpreter for the past 15 years Julia has been on staff with Stanford Health Care, a leader in defining healthcare interpreting as a profession. 

Julia has been interpreting remotely since 2009 and watched the tools and our understanding of remote interpreting evolve. 


CEUs/CEPs pending.


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