guidance from an experienced interpreting coach who is a native speaker of English
opportunities to receive feedback about your production of English and interpreting skills
teaching materials tailor-made for interpreters, with an emphasis on English usage (terminology, syntax) and skills
flexible, self-paced learning - dip into the materials as you see fit
time commitment dependent on your availability and motivation
affordable package with no tie-in - automatic monthly payments (cancel whenever you like with just an email)
a weekly live group session, in which I give personal feedback to some of the participants on their work into English - PAYG for Flex members (€15), included for All-Inclusive members.
regular posts on the dedicated members' platform, covering vocabulary, disambiguation, syntax, pronunciation, and the occasional improvisation exercise.
membership of a closed Facebook group to allow you to connect with fellow English retourists, ask questions about English usage or retour technique, or set up a practice group.
a host of little bonuses, including tips about what's hot in the news, cultural references, motivation and more!
"Rock your Retour is excellent practice – not only do we practice our retour skills, but we learn a lot of useful vocabulary, we learn from different colleagues who attend classes and our topics are always very current.
Sophie pinpoints our weaknesses and advises us how best to overcome them. On top of everything else, Sophie’s feedback is always kind and respectful."
IS ROCK YOUR RETOUR FOR YOU?
an interpreting student with English B
a professional interpreter hoping to turn an English C into a B
an interpreter with an existing retour into English, wanting to improve or refresh your skills
Do you want...
to improve your English enough to turn it into a B, so as to get more work, or
to maintain your existing retour skills and avoid going rusty
to gain confidence if you don't use your retour very often
to ensure you are comfortable using your retour in a variety of contexts
to become more attuned to the subtleties of English
to expand your 'toolkit' of vocabulary, idioms and terminology
to identify and correct persistent errors in your use of English
to get motivated to practise your retour regularly
I'm Sophie Llewellyn Smith, aka The Interpreting Coach.
I'm an EU-accredited conference interpreter and member of AIIC (the International Association of Conference Interpreters) with over 15 years' experience as an interpreter trainer and Trainer of Trainers.
I'm a specialist retour trainer, and have trained interpreters from organisations such as the African Union, the European Parliament, and the UN. I also organise retour courses for groups of interpreters on request.
I have a French retour myself, so I know what it's like trying to develop and maintain a strong retour! Over the years, I've given a lot of thought to what techniques work best.
I love working with talented, motivated colleagues who are keen to improve their interpreting skills with a tailor-made approach.
Look forward to hearing from you soon,
How much does it cost?
The regular price for Rock your Retour All-inclusive is €60 per month. Rock your Retour Flex costs €25 per month, and you can book add-ons, such as a coaching call, feedback on an audio call, or a place on a weekly live session; all of these are individually priced.
Please be aware that these are membership sites, i.e. when you purchase, you are subscribing on a monthly basis. Your account or card will be charged automatically each month (you will not receive a reminder) unless and until you choose to cancel your subscription (you can do this simply by sending an email).
Is there a minimum tie-in?
No, you are only committing to a month's membership at a time (payments are taken automatically every month). You can cancel at any time and resume at any time.
Who is RyR NOT suitable for?
If what you're looking for is detailed personal feedback on one or several interpreting performances per week, you will not be satisfied with RyR. I cannot provide that level of personal attention, and you would be better off with a coach.
If you have a slow Internet connection and you don't have a desktop or laptop computer, you will not be able to appear on screen to perform live during group sessions.
RyR is not suitable for beginners. The assumption is that you already have solid interpreting skills (listening & analysis, note-taking, simultaneous). The aim of the programme is to help you improve your retour, not to teach you to interpret from scratch.
What is your refund policy?
I do not offer refunds, unless a serious technical problem means you cannot access the membership site at all. Remember you are only committing to a month's membership at a time. If you are interested in membership and would like a sneak preview of my materials, I am happy to send you a couple of files or point you to blog posts that contain similar content.
How much personal feedback will I receive?
If you attend live classes, you may have an opportunity to interpret 'live' and receive feedback from me (depending on the number of participants, and on your Internet speed). Most weeks, I can give feedback to everyone who comes along to live classes. If you miss out, you can send me an audio file instead.
You can also ask questions in the Facebook group.
Rock your Retour is designed to support YOUR learning, though. If you want detailed feedback about several speeches per week, you would be better off looking for a coach.
Are the live classes compulsory?
Nothing is compulsory! You will get out of membership what you put into it. If you attend live classes, you will have a chance to work in the presence of other retourists and get some feedback. I also put recordings of the classes on the site, so you can watch later.
When do live classes take place? What if I can't make it?
I usually arrange live sessions on Fridays, but sometimes there are extra sessions on other days of the week. There are several sessions to cater for different time zones, typically 9 am and 5 pm UK time.
If you can't make it, you can always watch the replay on the members' portal!
What A languages do you cover?
Members with any A language are welcome to join. Much of the work is self-study in your own time. The feedback I give to participants on their output into English during live classes is useful even if I don't understand the source material.
If your mother tongue is French, German or Greek, and you attend live classes, you may get a slightly different style of feedback, since these languages are part of my combination.
How much time will I need to invest?
That's entirely up to you! Rock your Retour is designed as a programme to support the work YOU do to improve your retour. If you went through all the suggested exercises each week and attended every live class, I estimate it would take 2-3 hours. The more you put in, the more you get out of it!
Should I go for RyR All-inclusive, or RyR Flex?
It depends on your availability. If you are busy and are rarely available on Fridays, RyR Flex will work better for you: you can book and pay for each live group session separately, so you only pay for what you use. But RyR All-inclusive is better value for money if you're generally able to attend live sessions on Fridays.