MockQuestions

Language Interpreter Mock Interview

To help you prepare for your Language Interpreter interview, here are 24 interview questions and answer examples.

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Question 1 of 24

When did you decide to become an interpreter and why?

How to Answer

You can add a personal touch when answering this question as very often we choose our career based on an experience in our younger years.



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List of 24 Language Interpreter Interview Questions & Answers

  • 1.

    When did you decide to become an interpreter and why?

      How to Answer

      You can add a personal touch when answering this question as very often we choose our career based on an experience in our younger years.



      1st Answer Example

      "My family is Chinese-American and I saw first-hand the struggles that they faced when first immigrating to the US. I wanted to find a way to help so I immersed myself in linguistics. It snowballed from there as I realized I had a true talent and passion for it."

  • 2.

    Do you want to keep learning and developing yourself?

      How to Answer

      Being highly engaged in your line of work means that you will spend time developing your skills, even outside of work hours. Talk about this a little bit.



      1st Answer Example

      "I am an avid learner and really do try to take every opportunity that I can to develop my skills as an interpreter. I am a volunteer interpreter in my spare time and I also read many books to help me to further develop my communication and language skills."

  • 3.

    What is so special about being an interpreter?

      How to Answer

      Loving what you do is a really important factor that will speak to your productivity on the job. Tell the hiring manager why you feel your role as an interpreter is so special and important.



      1st Answer Example

      "There are many special things that come along with being an interpreter. Being able to facilitate an important conversation between two parties that otherwise could never smoothly communicate, is a really neat part of what I do."

  • 4.

    Do you feel you have what it takes to perform the role as an interpreter successfully?

      How to Answer

      If you have been an interpreter for some time this will be a simple question to answer because you can draw upon your personal experience. If you are newer to the industry you should talk about the qualities and skills that you possess that align well with the desired qualities of an interpreter.



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  • 5.

    Is this opportunity a good fit for you?

      How to Answer

      Your research of the company prior to your interview will be an important factor when answering this question. What is it about this opportunity that you feel is a good fit or match for you?



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  • 6.

    Do you see yourself staying in this kind of work for a long time?

      How to Answer

      Longevity is important to hiring managers. Do your best to let the interviewer know that you are in this career long term. You can also talk about your previous tenure if you have a strong work history.



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  • 7.

    Do you have a passion for this type of work?

      How to Answer

      It's okay to make this answer a little bit personal. You will want to show the interviewer or hiring manager that you really do love being a language interpreter.



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  • 8.

    How long have you been an interpreter?

      How to Answer

      You can do a recap on your resume when answering this question. Be sure to include any education, internships, co-ops or volunteer work.



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  • 9.

    Have you taken classes/workshops to expand your education and skills that will help as an interpreter?

      How to Answer

      A good interpreter will always work to better their skills. Hiring managers would like to know that you are never dormant in your education but that you are always striving to be better.



      You could answer like this: "I continually take classes to expand my skills. This past summer I have expanded my skills in the Mandarin language. I plan to take additional workshops this coming year."

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  • 10.

    What interpreting experience do you have?

      How to Answer

      Your current resume should outline your experience but the hiring manager is looking for more specific facts on your interpreting experience.



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  • 11.

    Did you perform a job shadow or mentorship/internship?

      How to Answer

      You may have a variety of experiences listed on your resume but the hiring manager would like to know more about your first significant experience with a mentor or in an internship type of situation.



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  • 12.

    Why are you interested in working with us?

      How to Answer

      Be sure to research the company prior to your interview, and also know the job description really well. This will help you to prepare for questions such as this one. Express your true interest and tie in how well you think you would do, if given the opportunity.



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  • 13.

    What languages are you fluent in?

      How to Answer

      Give a concise list, starting with your strongest skills and years of experience.



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  • 14.

    Where have you gained the experience necessary to perform the job as an interpreter?

      How to Answer

      You have likely gained your experience through a variety of avenues. Take a few minutes to tell the story of your experience as an interpreter.



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  • 15.

    What have you done to prepare for this job?

      How to Answer

      Researching the company and ensuring that your skills are what the hiring manager is looking for will be an important first step before answering this question in an interview.



      You can answer like this: "To prepare for this position, I have done a great amount of research on your company and your clients to ensure that I am a good fit for this role. My years of experience as a public and private language interpreter also provided much preparation. Should I be given the opportunity, I know that I will be well prepared and ready."

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  • 16.

    What do you do if you didn't hear exactly what a person said but you get the general "gist"?

      How to Answer

      Accuracy is of utmost importance when you are working as a language interpreter. Be sure to show the hiring manager that you take the responsibility of your job very seriously.



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  • 17.

    When you are interpreting, do you try to establish a relationship with the person or do you try to keep the relationship formal and more detached?

      How to Answer

      Talk a bit about your personality when interpreting, and the type of relationship that you prefer to have with the person whom you are interpreting for.



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  • 18.

    What would you do if you were interpreting and a person used gestures which are not understood in the culture of the other person?

      How to Answer

      This can be answered simply, and with an example of a time when this happened to you, if it has.



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  • 19.

    What kinds of people do you have the most difficulty working with?

      How to Answer

      As an interpreter, you have likely come across many personalities and cultures. Having difficulty with a particular type of client is okay to admit but be aware to not create a negative feeling in the interview. Always bring it back to the positive.



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  • 20.

    What types of clients do you typically work with?

      How to Answer

      Talk about your typical client and give a solid overview of the types of interpreting jobs you have had.



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  • 21.

    How well can you understand different dialects and accents?

      How to Answer

      Tell the hiring manager about your level of comfortability when it comes to heavier accents or unusual dialects. Follow this up by talking about a time that you were complimented or recognized for being strong in this type of skill.



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  • 22.

    Tell me about your interpreter experiences.

      How to Answer

      You can start near the beginning of your career when you answer this question. Essentially, you are briefly bringing your resume to life for the hiring manager. Be somewhat brief and well rehearsed to avoid rambling on unnecessarily.



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  • 23.

    What can you do for us that other candidates can't?

      How to Answer

      Tell the hiring manager what it is that you feel you bring to the position that others may not. What makes you stand out?



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  • 24.

    How do you handle stressful situations?

      How to Answer

      How you respond to stress could determine whether you are a good fit for their team or not. Be sure to back up your answer with a reference to a previous compliment or performance review.



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