Korean interpretation skills needed to become a good interpreter

The need for Korean interpreters is increasing along with the development and expansion of the economy. Besides being fluent in the Korean language, interpreters need to possess other necessary Korean interpretation skills. Learn these skills now.

Korean interpretation skills – strong grasp of vocabulary

Kỹ năng phiên dịch tiếng Hàn - 1

Of course, achieving fluency in Korean is the first step toward becoming a Korean interpreter. Translators need to accumulate a rich vocabulary to be able to translate Korean meanings quickly and accurately.

Korean is an isolated language, and its grammar is completely different from Chinese. However, due to the long history of the two countries and the influence of Chinese culture, up to 60% of Korean vocabulary is derived from Chinese. The rest, about 35%, is purely Korean vocabulary and 5% is borrowed from many other languages like English, Japanese, etc.

Cultivating a rich Korean vocabulary will support interpreters to increase listening comprehension; speed and interpretation ability will also significantly improve.

Korean interpretation skills – Grammar proficiency

Kỹ năng phiên dịch tiếng Hàn - 2

Grammar is an integral part of any language. Basically, when you are sure of Korean grammar, you will understand what the native speakers want to say. Without grammar, you will not be able to fully understand or misunderstand the meaning of the interlocutor. Therefore, when interpreters make translations without using the correct grammar, the listener either does not understand the meaning of the sentence or is misunderstood.

English, Chinese, and Vietnamese are all SVO (subject–verb–object) languages, where the order of components in the sentence is subject–verb–object. Meanwhile, Korean is the SOV (subject–object–verb) language, which means subject–object–verb, the verb that is always behind the object and the last component of the sentence.

Therefore, in addition to grasping vocabulary, interpreters need to master grammar. Only then can you translate quickly and accurately the content you want to convey.

Chinese interpretation skills – Confident communication

Kỹ năng phiên dịch tiếng Hàn - 3

Communication skills are crucial for a Korean interpreter. This skill allows the interpreter to convey the meanings fluently and with a limited number of communication errors. At the same time, avoid a stammer that makes the listener feel uncomfortable and unprofessional.

Assume you understand the speaker’s message but are unable to express it fluently; this would be a significant flaw. At this point, the listener will not be able to understand the content that the speaker wants to express. This also means that the Korean translation job failed.

If you need to register for a high-quality Korean interpretation service, you can contact us immediately!

Korean interpretation skills – Fluency in Vietnamese

It sounds strange, but it makes sense. Translating from Korean into Vietnamese requires proficiency in both languages. If you are fluent in only one of the two languages, the translation process will be extremely difficult.

Understanding the native language is important for interpreters. They must use their native language to interpret correctly. Besides, an interpreter needs to be flexible in the process of interpreting; the translation should be suitably precise and concise without necessarily interpreting every single word.

Korean interpretation skills – Social knowledge updates

Kỹ năng phiên dịch tiếng Hàn - 4

Korean interpreters not only have to have professional knowledge of translation but also need to update their deep social knowledge. Because the exchange process usually takes place not only in one field but sometimes in a combination of many different professions, The more flexible the interpreter is, the more fluent the Korean translation process will be.

To improve your social knowledge, you can learn about the culture and traditions of countries through books, movies, and even native speakers.

Korean translation skills – Understanding of cultures

Kỹ năng phiên dịch tiếng Hàn - 5

Each country has its own language and culture. As a result, interpreters must understand the cultures of the two countries whose languages they interpret. This is also a skill required for interpreters Because they play a role in connecting and communicating messages between people of different cultures.

This skill is very important for Korean translators as well. Therefore, always take the time to learn about different cultures to accurately convey the speaker’s content.

Korean interpretation skills – Emotion management

Kỹ năng phiên dịch tiếng Hàn - 6

Since the nature of interpretation is a profession that works in many different environments, it is necessary for those in the profession to know how to manage their emotions. For example, when translating in a particular environment and exposed to situations such as debates, court trials, emergencies, and deaths, the interpreter needs to know how to manage emotions and maintain reason to perform his/her translation well.

Korean interpretation skills – Work arrangement and arrangement

Kỹ năng phiên dịch tiếng Hàn - 7

This is the skill that any profession needs, including the interpreting profession. Interpreters working individually or in teams need to determine which work is important, Prioritize, and organize work in a reasonable way for themselves and for their teams.

Some useful Korean interpretation experience.

To become a good Korean interpreter, in addition to practicing the above Korean translation skills, it is necessary to accumulate a lot of translation experience. Here are some effective Korean translation experiences.

1| Learn the Korean alphabet and pronunciation.

Incorrect pronunciation not only degrades the translation quality by making it difficult for listeners to hear and understand, but also makes it hard for interpreters to listen to the source language. Remember that before you can speak fluently, you should first learn how to pronounce it correctly.

Frequent contact with native speakers also greatly helps the interpreter with the standard pronunciation and use of sentences more accurately and appropriately.

2| Regular interpretation practice

A good interpreter not only needs to learn from books but also needs a lot of experience. Practicing face-to-face interpreting, online interpreting, or participating in events with large and small interpreting sessions is a way to reach many customers and practice speaking, interpretation, communication skills, etc. This will help them accumulate a lot of interpreting experience through practice and further train their soft skills.

You may be interested in Korean simultaneous interpretation services:


3| Shorthand and recording of important information when listening

The interpreter’s shorthand and notes help preserve and express the core content of the speaker’s speech. It’s usually symbols, signs, keywords, drawings, etc. to quickly remember what the author wants to convey and express in his or her own way. This helps to ensure the translated content is understood when the speaker has a long speech that the interpreter cannot fully remember.

4| Read, listen, and exchange content before the interpretation

Before the interpretation takes place, interpreters need to read, listen to, and exchange with customers the basic translation content. This makes the translation more convenient, as the translation process is not interrupted. This is also the experience that helps interpreters succeed at work.

5| Control your tone and use appropriate expressions.

In translation, the tone and expression of the interpreter are very important. Experienced interpreters know how to control the tone and facial expressions in accordance with the translation content and the speaker’s attitude. This is one of the few translation experiences that people have revealed.

Korean is gradually becoming the language for which many businesses, companies, and organizations need professional interpreters. It is not easy to become a good Korean translator, especially to master the skills of Korean translation. If you need a quality Korean interpreter, contact Tomato Media. We are always ready to support your project with highly qualified and professional Korean interpreters.

Frequently asked questions about Korean interpretation skills

Which Topik level does a Korean interpreter need?

Which Topik level a Korean interpreter needs will be related to the content of the event:

  • Common communication event: Topik 3 and above
  • Basic specialized communication events (journalism, education, and training): Topik 4 and above
  • Difficult, intensive specialized communication events (IT, medical, pharmaceutical, automotive, engineering, etc.): Topik 6

Who is a Korean interpreter?

A Korean interpreter translates from Korean into another language or vice versa. The duties and responsibilities of a Korean interpreter may include interpreting Korean at events like conferences, meetings in legal, medical, hospitality, insurance or finance majors, etc.



Ready to get started?

Have a large project?



Messages Zalo