|Ready to practice interpreting in person in Chile. With wine.|
Turns out that Dagy had already heard about Speechpool during an EU webstream of the "New modes of learning" SCIC Universities Conference in Brussels. The site was enthusiastically received by conference participants, and there's no doubt that Speechpool is an invaluable resource to practice your interpreting skills. We frequently write about which resources and tools we use to practice our interpreting and to prepare for certification and accreditation exams, and we wish this tool had existed a long time ago. Many thanks to Silvia for the reminder about this fantastic tool. She was involved in the project and did the final proofing of the Italian version of the site, although modest Silvia wants to make sure that the credit goes to Alice Bertinotti and many other volunteers, who played a very big role in the translation of the site into Italian and other languages. The site was designed by the very talented Sophie Llewellyn Smith, who runs it.
We know that our fantastic colleague Michelle Hof of The Interpreter Diaries already blogged about Speechpool on her blog, but we figured we'd do so too, as we'd love to spread the word! Here's how it works:
- The basic idea of the website is that interpreters exchange practice material for the benefit of all. The site is multilingual, of course (and more languages to come). The site was created and recently launched because many interpreters have complained about the fact that not that much suitable interpreting material is available online, in spite of the millions of videos that get uploaded every week. We've certainly had the same experience, even though we love TED videos and the EU speech repository (limited access, unfortunately).
- To see speeches, you have to register (we've already done that). This takes about two minutes.
- You can search for available interpreting videos by keyword for your specific language. Very handy.
- Speeches suitable for both simultaneous and consecutive are available, and speakers include both native and non-native speakers, which is clearly marked.
- You can also rate the difficulty level of the video and report any problems in terms of audio and quality, along the lines of Tripadvisor. We like.
- We've already viewed a few videos, and the quality was outstanding.
- Now, in addition to just learning, you can also contribute to the learning -- that's the idea. You can upload your own recorded videos for others to practice. You have to do this to YouTube (to save bandwidth) and them embed the video into Speechpool. We definitely plan on recording several videos.
- The best part: it's free. Really. No catches. Speechpool received funding from the UK NNI (National Network for Interpreting) and is continually being developed by staff at the University of Leeds.
Enjoy! We'd love to hear what you think about Speechpool!