About the conference

Second Hong Kong Baptist University International Conference on Interpreting





8-9 April 2021


Online Platform




Centre for Translation
Department of Translation, Interpreting and Intercultural Studies
Hong Kong Baptist University


Cognitive approaches to studying interpreting have been one of the main streams of research in Interpreting Studies since the 1970s. Recently, as new perspectives continue to form and new methodologies continue to be adopted and as a result of increasing inter-disciplinary cross-pollination, the field of Interpreting Studies has seen a resurgence of cognition-related research, not only in spoken language interpreting, but also in signed language interpreting. Riding on this exciting new wave and continuing our tradition of having a targeted theme, we aspire to use this platform to bring together top and promising scholars in both spoken language interpreting and signed language interpreting to Hong Kong.


This conference is the second "Hong Kong Baptist University International Conference on Interpreting". The first conference was held in 2017 with the theme History of Interpreting.



Organizing Committee

  • Min-hua LIU (Conference Chair), Hong Kong Baptist University
  • Robert NEATHER, Hong Kong Baptist University
  • Nan ZHAO, Hong Kong Baptist University


Programme Committee

  • Michaela ALBL-MIKASA, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland
  • Agnieszka CHMIEL, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland
  • Yanping DONG, Zhejiang University, China
  • Damien FAN, National Taiwan University, Taiwan
  • Adolfo GARCÍA, Cognitive Neuroscience Center, UdeSA, Argentina
  • Min-hua LIU, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong
  • Christopher MELLINGER, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, USA
  • Brenda NICODEMUS, Gallaudet University, USA
  • Franz PÖCHHACKER, University of Vienna, Austria
  • Elisabet TISELIUS, Stockholm University, Sweden


This conference is endorsed by TREC.

Keynote speakers


  • Adolfo GARCÍA
  • (Cognitive Neuroscience Center, UdeSA, Argentina; Global Brain Health Institute, UCSF, USA)



  • What's Special about the Interpreter's Brain? A Neurocognitive Tale of Expert Bilingual Processing



  • Within the vast bilingual population, simultaneous interpreters (SIs) stand out by the elevated processing demands they face in professional settings. The need to comprehend oral discourse in one language and render it in another as it unfolds, under strict time constraints, pushes verbal and non-verbal mechanisms to their limits. Therefore, SIs offer a unique model to assess how capable the bilingual brain is for experience-driven changes under stringent circumstances. In this conference, I will review multiple studies to answer three relevant, overarching questions: (a) how do the neurobiological systems mediating bilingual cognition adapt to the extreme demands faced by SIs?; (b) which of the associated verbal and non-verbal functions evince behavioral enhancements in this population?; and (c) what are the immediate challenges in this flourishing research field? In brief, this is an invitation to understand how extreme bilingual experiences influence cognition at large and, more generally, how the human mind adapts to the particular demands we may place on it.


About the Speaker:

  • Adolfo García, Ph.D., is an expert in the neuroscience of language and social interaction. He serves as Associate Professor and Co-Director of the Cognitive Neuroscience Center (Universidad de San Andrés, Argentina), Atlantic Fellow and Associate Specialist at the Global Brain Health Institute (University of California, San Francisco), Adjunct Researcher at the National Scientific and Technical Research Council (Argentina), Adjunct Professor of Neurolinguistics at the Faculty Education of the National University of Cuyo (Argentina), member of the Management Committee of the "Translation, Research, Empiricism, Cognition" (TREC) Network, honorary member of the Center of Cognitive Neuroscience at La Laguna University (Spain), and High-Level Talent appointed by the Ministry of Science and Technology of China. He has received training in cognitive neuroscience, translation, and foreign-language teaching, alongside postdoctoral studies at the Institute of Cognitive Neurology (Argentina) and research stays at New York University and Rice University (United States). He now leads research projects in over ten countries across the globe. Moreover, he serves as Director of the Master's in Language and Cognition, a postgraduate program he created at the National University of Cuyo. His teaching career includes graduate and postgraduate courses in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and China. He has more than 170 publications, including books, chapters, and papers in leading journals, mainly focused on neurolinguistics and bilingualism. He has offered more than 150 presentations and speeches at international academic meetings and science dissemination events. Moreover, he is the host of the TV show "Of brains and words" and of a radio column titled "Mind and communication". His scientific contributions have been recognized by awards and distinctions from the Linguistic Association of Canada and the United States, the Ibero-American Neuroeducation Society, the Argentine Association of Behavioral Science, and the Legislature of the City of Buenos Aires.






  • Interpreting as Complex Human Performance: The Role of Cognitive Abilities, Experience, and Task Demands



  • Interpreting involves multiple cognitive processes and recruitment of linguistic, social, and content knowledge. Moreover, interpreting is considered a skill practiced in "wicked" (rather than "kind") environments. That is, we have limited control over the content we interpret or the pace of the speakers, we cannot predict exactly what will be said in the next few minutes, and we will likely never interpret the same content in the same context ever again. Despite this, some interpreter trainees develop robust interpreting skills and some professional interpreters excel in a variety of interpreting settings. In this address, I will discuss interpreting through the lens of complex human performance. This lens takes into account cognitive factors, experiential factors, and the role of task demands. I will give background on existing theories of skill acquisition and expertise, then will explain newer research that better accounts for the complexity of interpreting. With this research, we can move toward a better understanding of interpreter expertise.


About the Speaker:

  • Dr. Brooke N. Macnamara has degrees in American Sign Language-English Interpreting (B.A.), Interdisciplinary Studies (M.A.), and Psychology (M.A. and Ph.D.). After graduating from an interpreter training program and receiving her national certification in interpreting, she worked full time as an American Sign Language-English interpreter in Chicago, IL for seven years. During this time she became interested in cognitive aptitude for interpreting and completed an M.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies, focusing on cognitive psychology and interpreting theory. In 2008, she turned her attention full-time to research, pursuing a M.A. and a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology at Princeton University. There, she began investigating individual differences in cognitive abilities and experience as predictors of interpreting skill. After receiving her Ph.D. in 2014, Dr. Macnamara joined the faculty in the Department of Psychological Sciences at Case Western Reserve University where she directs the Skill, Learning, and Performance Laboratory and the Bilingualism and Communication Performance Laboratory. She currently researches predictors of skill acquisition and expertise across a range of performance domains.

Call for papers Ended

We welcome oral presentations and posters on both basic and applied research that fit the sub-themes of the conference or that are related to the conference theme in a broader sense.



  • bimodal and unimodal bilingualism and their implications in interpreting studies
  • modality (bimodal or unimodal) effects in interpreting
  • cognitive processes and constructs in different modalities and modes of interpreting
  • neurological substrates of interpreting
  • attention and memory in interpreting
  • cognitive workload in different modes of interpreting
  • cognitive considerations in machine-aided interpreting
  • cognitive abilities as interpreting aptitude
  • cognition-informed training of interpreters
  • skill acquisition and attrition in interpreters
  • interpreter's cognition throughout the life span


The language of the conference is English.


Length of presentations: 30 minutes (20 minutes for presentation and 10 minutes for discussion)


Poster presentation sessions will be held during the conference breaks. Poster presentation guidelines will be sent with the notification of acceptance.


Submissions must include the following information:

  • name of author(s)
  • affiliation
  • email address
  • title and an abstract of 300-400 words
  • 3-5 keywords
  • short author biography of 50 to 100 words


All submissions must be submitted in Word 2010 or later versions to by 6 January 2021 (deadline extended). Notifications of acceptance will be sent by email by 13 January 2021.

Programme **Updated**

Considering the many different time zones our presenters and participants are from, we will make the recordings of the presentations (except for the presentation with an asterisk) available on Google Drive and accessible to conference registrants.

Conference Recordings (only accessible to conference registrants) **Closed**


Auto live transcription (provided by Zoom) of the conference will be provided.


8 April 2021 (Thursday)

08.30-08.45   Welcome
Opening speech by Mette HJORT (Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Hong Kong Baptist University)
09.00-10.30   SESSION 1: Cognitive Abilities as Interpreting Aptitude
Chair: Christopher D. MELLINGER
09.00 (21.00, New York)
Interpreting Experience Enhances Predictive Processing in the Second Language

Cristina LOZANO-ARGÜELLES (John Jay College of Criminal Justice, USA)
Nuria SAGARRA (Rutgers University, USA)
Joseph V. CASILLAS (Rutgers University, USA)
09.30 (9.30, Hangzhou)
Attentional Control and the Unique Bilingual Profile of Interpreters

Yanping DONG (Zhejiang University, China)
10.00 (10.00, Shanghai)
Uncertainty Management with Professional and Novice Interpreters: An Eye-Tracking Study
Yan HE (Fudan University, China)
11.00-12.30   SESSION 2: Cognitive Processes and Constructs in Interpreting 1
Chair: Christopher D. MELLINGER
11.00 (11.00, Taipei)
Tail-To-Tail Span and Quality in English to Chinese Simultaneous Interpreting

Chiaming Damien FAN (National Taiwan University, Taiwan)
Ping-Hsiu Kimberly CHEN (National Taiwan University, Taiwan)
11.30 (11.30, Hong Kong)
Planning Ahead: Interpreters Predict Source Language in Consecutive Interpreting

Nan ZHAO (Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong)
Xiaocong CHEN (The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong)
Zhenguang CAI (The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)
12.00 (12.00, Hong Kong)
Is There a Core Word List of Political Interpreting?

Haoran Harry WANG (Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong)
15.30-17.00   SESSION 3: Cognitive Processes and Constructs in Interpreting 2
Chair: Chiaming Damien FAN
15.30 (10.30, Istanbul)
Morphosyntactic Prediction in Student Vs. Professional Turkish (A) - English (B) Simultaneous Interpreters: Between-group and Individual Differences

Deniz ÖZKAN (Koç University, Turkey)
Ena HODZIK (Boğaziçi University, Turkey)
Ebru DIRIKER (Boğaziçi University, Turkey)
16.00 (10.00, Brussels)
Are Complex Sentences Harder to Translate and Interpret between Languages from Different Families?

Selim EARLS (University of Louvain, Belgium)
16.30 (16.30, Nanchang)
(Withdrawn) Primary Information Processing in English-Chinese Simultaneous Interpreting. A Corpus-Based Description Triangulated with an Eye-Tracking Experiment

Lu YUAN (East China Jiaotong University, China)
20.00-21.30   KEYNOTE SPEECH 1
(09.00, Buenos Aires)
What's Special about the Interpreter's Brain?
A Neurocognitive Tale of Expert Bilingual Processing

Adolfo GARCÍA (Cognitive Neuroscience Center, UdeSA, Argentina;
Global Brain Health Institute, UCSF, USA)
Moderator: Min-hua LIU


9 April 2021 (Friday)

09.00-10.30   SESSION 4: Interpreting Skill Acquisition
Chair: Chiaming Damien FAN
09.00 (21.00, Charlotte)
Developing Meta-Cognitive Behavior in Community Interpreting Students: Sight Translation as a Case Study

Christopher D. MELLINGER (University of North Carolina at Charlotte, USA)
09.30 (09.30, Guangzhou)
Effects of Note-taking on Interpreters’ Memory of Source Text: A Developmental Perspective

Jinhua ZHOU (Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, China)
10.00 (10.00, Wenzhou/Hangzhou)
The Emergence of a Complex Language Skill: Evidence from the Self-organization of Interpreting Competence in Interpreter Trainees

Zhibin YU (Wenzhou Medical University, China)
Yanping DONG (Zhejiang University, China)
13.30-14.30   SESSION 5: Cognitive Considerations in Machine-Aided Interpreting
Chair: Nan ZHAO
13.30 (13.30, Chongqing)
Computer-Aided Interpreting in The Consecutive Mode: A Practical Training Proposal

Sijia CHEN (Southwest University, China)
14.00 (08.00, Mainz)
Cognitive Load In ASR-Aided Interpreting: A Look At Pauses and EVS

Bianca PRANDI (Johannes-Gutenberg Universität Mainz, Germany)
15.00-16.30   SESSION 6: Cognitive Workload in Interpreting
Chair: Nan ZHAO
15.00 (17.00, Sydney)
An Eye-Movement Analysis of Visual Attention, Cognitive Load, and Interpreting Performance during Consecutive and Simultaneous Interpreting Modes in a Remotely Interpreted Investigative Interview

Stephen DOHERTY (The University of New South Wales, Australia)
Sandra HALE (The University of New South Wales, Australia)
Natalie MARTSCHUK (Charles Sturt University, Australia)
Jane GOODMAN-DELAHUNTY (Charles Sturt University, Australia)
15.30 (09.30, Zurich)
English as a Lingua Franca-Induced Effects on Cognitive Load and Interpreting Quality

Michaela ALBL-MIKASA (Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland)
Anne Catherine GIESHOFF (Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland)
16.00 (09.00, Newcastle)
Let the Eyes Do the Talking – A Study on Trainee Interpreters’ Cognitive Load during Notetaking in Consecutive Interpreting Using Gaze Aversion (GA) Paradigm

Wenbo GUO (Newcastle University, United Kingdom)
20.00-21.30   KEYNOTE SPEECH 2
(08.00, Cleveland)
Interpreting as Complex Human Performance: The Role of Cognitive Abilities, Experience, and Task Demands

Brooke MACNAMARA (Case Western Reserve University, USA)
Moderator: Min-hua LIU
21.30-21.45   Closing

Instructions for Presenters **New**

Click here to view and download the conference virtual background for Zoom. **Closed**


Before the online conference:

  • In preparation for the meeting, please download and install Zoom and test your webcam and audio at Zoom Test site.
  • Please use your full name as listed in your conference registration form when logging in to Zoom so that we can identify you. Failing to do so may result in you being removed from the meeting by conference staff.
  • You can send us a copy of your slides before the conference, in case there is any technical problem with your connectivity or the sharing function of Zoom at your end during your presentation. We can then share your slides on your behalf while you are presenting.
  • Helpful Zoom Links and Tutorials are available at:
    Creating a Zoom Account
    Screen Sharing
    Audio/Video Testing
    Screen Sharing a PowerPoint Presentation


As a presenter before/during your presentation session:

  • The room you are using should be as quiet as possible.
  • Try to avoid having your back to a window or bright lighting behind you. A good light source in front of you (on your face) will produce a better image on Zoom. You may use the virtual background provided by the conference (please refer to the top of this section) but please test it to ensure there are no video irregularities. Virtual backgrounds work best when you present with a bare wall with no bright light behind you.
  • Before your presentation, test your microphone and webcam to make sure they are turned on.
  • You will be admitted to the meeting before the start time of your session to get ready for your presentation. Please log into the Zoom meeting 10 minutes before the start time of your session (not at the exact time of your presentation) in case there are any issues that need to be worked out.
  • All presenting co-authors who have registered for the conference will be made co-hosts during the session so that they can share their screen during the presentation.
  • You will have 20 minutes for your presentation and 10 minutes for Q & A. You will be reminded by the session chair when there are 2 minutes remaining.
  • If at any time during your presentation or Q & A session you get logged out of Zoom due to an unstable internet connection, the session chair will wait for you to reconnect. If you are unable to reconnect, the session chair will proceed to the following presentation(s). If you manage to reconnect before the session period ends, you may be able to continue, pending that another presentation has not yet started.
  • No make-up session will be arranged if you miss your presentation session.
  • You can alert the session chair or contact the conference staff via the Chat function if you have any questions.

Instructions for Attendees **New**
(For both the conference and the pre-conference workshop)

  • In preparation for the meeting, please download and install Zoom.
  • Please use your full name as listed in your conference registration form when logging into Zoom so that we can identify you. Failing to do so may result in you being removed from the meeting by conference staff.
  • Please join your session at least 5 minutes before the scheduled time.
  • (for conference) In cases where the presentation is withdrawn or the speaker does not show, the session will proceed with the presentation(s) that follow, and therefore, a presentation may start earlier than it is scheduled.
  • In Q & A sessions after presentations, questions are asked by pressing the “raise-hand” function of Zoom.
  • You can contact the conference staff via the Chat function during the Zoom sessions if you have any questions.
  • Helpful Zoom Links and Tutorials are available at:
    Creating a Zoom Account
    Screen Sharing
    Audio/Video Testing
    Screen Sharing a PowerPoint Presentation

Abstracts **New**

Click the image below to download the e-Programme Handbook.


Registration and fees

Registration is required for all presenters and participants to join the online conference. Co-presenters do not need to register unless they plan to participate in the conference.


Pre-conference workshop participants, whether attending the conference or not, are required to register to join the online workshop.


Revised Conference Fee for Presenters

Full rate: HKD1,000

Student rate: HKD400


Revised Conference Fee for Non-presenting Participants

Flat rate: HKD100


Online Pre-conference Workshop Fee

Flat rate: HKD300


Registration and payment can be completed through filling out and returning the registration form by email to


All conference and pre-conference workshop registrants will be issued a unique link to access the conference and/or the workshop online. All fees are non-refundable and non-transferable. E-receipt and e-certificate of attendance will be issued.


A letter of invitation will be provided upon request to registrants who have completed their registration.


The registration fee of colleagues and students of Hong Kong Baptist University will be waived but registration is still required by completing and returning the conference registration form with relevant identity document.


Important dates

  • Call for papers: 15 August 2020
  • Deadline for submission of proposals: 6 January 2021 (deadline extended)
  • Notification of acceptance: 13 January 2021 (revised)
  • Registration of presenters: December 2020 - end of February 2021
  • Registration of online participants: until 31 March 2021 (deadline extended)
  • Registration for pre-conference workshop: until 31 March 2021
  • Programme available on-line: early March 2021

Pre-conference workshop (Online)

Journal Publication: A Dialogue between Authors and Editors


Date /Time

7 April 2021, 7:00-9:30pm



LIU Min-hua



(University of Vienna; Co-editor of Interpreting)
Christopher MELLINGER
(University of North Carolina at Charlotte; Managing Editor of Translation and Interpreting Studies)
Chao HAN
(Xiamen University)
(Hong Kong Baptist University)





Online Platform





In this workshop, highly experienced journal editors and authors will share their experience in publishing in reputable peer-reviewed journals in and outside the field of Interpreting Studies. Designed for postgraduate students and young scholars, this workshop provides an opportunity for an open dialogue in a structured yet casual manner with the aim of having the participants' questions on journal publication answered.


This workshop welcomes non-conference participants. For registration, please go to the Registration and Fees section.

Contact us

For enquiries regarding the conference, please contact the Centre for Translation, Hong Kong Baptist University at: