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Note-taking effort in video remote interpreting: effects of source speech difficulty and interpreter work experience

Kuang, Huolingxiao and Zheng, Binghan (2022) 'Note-taking effort in video remote interpreting: effects of source speech difficulty and interpreter work experience.', Perspectives .


This paper reports on an investigation of the interactions between source speech difficulty, interpreters’ work experience and their note-taking behaviour in video remote interpreting. 20 professional interpreters and 29 student interpreters consecutively interpreted two easy segments and two difficult segments from English (L2) to Chinese (L1), with their eye and pen movements being registered by a Tobii eye-tracker and a Wacom digital pen. The results show that: (1) an increase of perceived interpreting difficulty led to a decrease in the overt visual attention and physical effort invested in note-taking, and a longer time to make note-taking decisions; (2) although the professionals and students reported a similar level of interpreting difficulty, the professionals devoted more overt visual attention and physical effort to completing the note-taking activity in interpreting than the students; and (3) the cognitive effort of note-taking was not affected by changes in source speech difficulty or interpreter work experience. These findings indicate that: (1) interpreting experience accumulation does not entail reductions in task-difficulty perception or the cognitive effort of note-taking but increases the amount of effort interpreters devote to note-taking; and (2) increased task difficulty affects time management during note-taking but not the cognitive effort of note-taking.

Item Type:Article
Full text:(AO) Author's Original
Available under License - Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives 4.0.
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Publisher statement:This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.
Date accepted:10 March 2022
Date deposited:No date available
Date of first online publication:22 March 2022
Date first made open access:No date available

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