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Handbook for Teaching Translation of S&TT

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Norman Gomez

on 28 October 2017

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Transcript of Handbook for Teaching Translation of S&TT

Proposal for a Handbook for Teaching Translation of Scientific and Technical Texts
Norman Gómez-Hernández
Rationale for the design of this Handbook

The Handbook for teaching translation of S&TT is a suitable and practical tool to teach those courses because
S&TT have become a major input for the translation work, overcoming the demand for translation of other texts. Gamero (2001:17).
Translation courses are delivered in the same way, regardless the variety of disciplines on S&TT: no errors = no problems = no learning.
Translation courses should include a variety of tasks, adequate in quantity and level of difficulty, and adapted to the public being taught,
their needs and interests, since this would help increase motivation.
Students require from texts and translation exercises relevant to the different fields of knowledge.
The purpose of a course on translation of S&TT is teaching students how to deal with texts related to a particular discipline for helping them become competent translator.
The Handbook will include a series of 12 workshops (6 for scientific texts; 6 for technical texts).
Presenting students some translation workshops about S&TT will help them retrieve their previous knowledge and acquire new translation concepts while learning how to solve problems that could be present in their professional work.
The inclusion of an electronic version will permit to work on-line, or to be delivered as virtual courses.
Learning materials could be updated periodically.
Translation courses will reach a broader public and have a bigger impact when students are unable to attend regular courses (class disruption, holidays, strikes, etc.)
General objective:

To propose the development of a didactic Handbook aimed for teaching translation of scientific and technical texts from English into Spanish to undergraduate students in courses at the advanced level of the Translation Program as a contribution to promote the improvement of materials used in such courses at the School of Languages.
Specific objectives
•To provide the rationale for the design of a didactic material for the translation of scientific and technical texts from English into Spanish.

•To design and present some of the workshops for the translation of S&TT, as part of a future Handbook on that topic, which can be used both by teachers like a classroom material and by students for independent work.

•To adapt some of the workshops to be used in a virtual environment with the help of the Moodle Platform.

•To design and carry out a survey to know what kind of scientific and technical texts are the most required for translation to be included as material for the future Scientific and Technical Translation Handbook.
Theoretical Framework

Brief Introduction to the Scientific Language (Gutiérrez Rodilla, 1998)
Social Constructivism and Collaborative Learning (Vigotsky, Rosas, Kiraly, Gergen)
Theoretical Contributions from Pedagogy (Comenio, Dewey, Zuluaga, Meirieu) and Didactics (Camilloni, 2007; Zuluaga, 1988)
Scientific Texts vs. Technical Texts (Bedard, 1986; Álvarez de Mon, 2001; Gamero, 2001; Hurtado Albir, 2003; Sevilla & Sevilla, 2003)
Text Typology, Register and Genre (Nieminen, 2004; Nord, 2005; Gamero, 2001; Hurtado Albir, 2003)
Terminology and Documentation (Lerat, 1997; Cabré, 1993)
Importance of Translation Techniques (Hurtado Albir, 2003); Translation Strategies (Baker, 2009); Translation Procedures (Vinay & Darbelnet, 1973; Newmark, 1988; Vásquez Ayora, 1977).
Translation Competence (Delisle, 2005; Gamero, 2001; Hurtado Albir, 2003; 2005; Kelly, 2005; Kiraly, 2003; Nord, 1997, 2006).
Translation Quality Assessment: Delisle (2003); Hurtado Albir (2003); Kelly (2005); Nord (1997, 2006); Ruiz (2006); Williams (2004).
Common Orientation of Translation Texts .
•Theoretically-oriented translation texts: Vásquez Ayora, 1977; Durieux, 1988; Baker, 1992; Delisle, 2005; Kelly, 2005; Byrne, 2006; López & Minett 2006.
Mainly theoretically-oriented translation texts with practical activities (i.e. exercises, questionnaires, commented translations, etc.): Vinay & Darbelnet (1977), Delisle (1993), Velásquez (1994), Delisle & Bastin (1997), Newmark (1998), Gamero (2001), Scarpa (2001) & Hurtado Albir (2003).
•Practically-oriented translation texts, such as handbooks, guides or modules (Montalt, 2005; Gómez & Gómez).
•Search and compilation of curricular information.
•Preparation of a bibliographical corpus.
•Search and selection of texts and multimedia materials to be included in the Handbook.
•Design of a Portfolio template.
•Design of the S&TT translation workshops.
•Design of answer sheets for each workshop.
•Pilot tests with some of the workshops and analysis of results.
•Implementation of changes based on the result of analysis.
•Design of instructions for using the Handbook and for using each individual workshop.
•Presentation of the results before the implemention of the material.

Thank you!

Norman Gómez-Hernández
Warm-up Activities
Use of I&CT in the Handbook

Moodle version
Now, let´s focus on the Handbook for Teaching Translation of Scientific and Technical Texts
Overview of Scientific and Technical Translation Programs in Colombia
Translation Workshop on Technical Texts:
Educative Texts (Tutorial)

Translation Workshop on Technical Texts:
Popular Science Article

Translation Workshop on Technical Texts:

Translation Workshop on Technical Texts:
The User´s Manual

Translation Workshop on Scientific Texts:
The Research Paper
Suggested answers to promote self-assessment
The S&T Translation Courses at the School of Languages.
Offered to students registered in the sixth and seventh semesters of the Translation Program (professional translation courses -Delisle, 2005).
Students must have passed the basic courses, and are supposed to have gained the translation competences to face authentic S&TT.
Two sessions: English 50% - French 50%.
Teachers are given a list of contents and some suggested bibliography to be taught, but it is up to them how to prepare and deliver their classes.
Wide variety of interpretations: teachers adapt the contents depending on their individual interests and academic background.
Students are usually asked to translate some texts and solve the translation problems ‘as they arise’.
Evaluation is based on a classroom project (translation, analysis, and glossary -20%), a final exam (timed translation -20%).
Only 10% is left for the classroom activities, leading to both students and teachers disregarding the importance of the follow up activities.
Benefits of adopting this proposal
For teachers:
Teaching material for teaching translation of S&TT in the corresponding courses to counter for the lack of adequate materials at the School of Languages.
A set of translation workshops available on a virtual environment helpful as an alternative option for delivering and evaluating lessons on-line.
Exploring other forms of evaluation (e.g. positive evaluation, portfolio assessment, on-line evaluation, etc.)
Knowing what kind of S&TT are the most required for translation in our working environment to adapt their classes accordingly.
Reflecting on their current ways of teaching translation by means of the study of the translation theories included in the Handbook´s theoretical framework.

For the students:
Enhancing their translation competence with a more comprehensive approach for learning concepts related to the texts to be translated before being engaged in the translation activities.
Getting at hand a series of workshops related to S&TT translation for them to work at their own pace.
Having the opportunity to work independently with activities on electronic format to develop their autonomy and self-assessment.
Having the opportunity of being evaluated with alternative assessment tools in order to receive a more reliable, valid, democratic and just evaluation.


"Technical-scientific (or scientific-technical) translation has always been considered as a single unit, both in research and in teaching. This is due to the fact that the boundaries between science and technology are not always clear" (Gamero, 2001:26).

“Text type is commonly used to refer to the functions of language or the function(s) of a text. Genre can be defined as the conventional realisations of texts within a “category” […] Register is the variety of language regulated by the situation […], all generally are phenomena above text level”. (Nieminen, 2004)
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