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Friday 1 July 2022

Technology to help interpreters prepare for a specialised job


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Can students from diverse backgrounds become specialist interpreters? What technologies can be used to facilitate interpreters’ subject knowledge acquisition and linguistic knowledge enhancement within a relatively short period of time? This webinar will provide answers to these questions by introducing Corpus Linguistics technologies for interpreting preparation.

It is well acknowledged that nowadays the World Wide Web provides a wealth of easily accessible language data, which can be used as a viable source for building specialised corpora. Corpus Linguistics tools can extract words which are typical for the topic of a corpus – i.e., they appear in the corpus more frequently than they would in general language. Interpreter trainees can be educated on how to compile ad hoc specialised corpora for terminology extraction to prepare for even highly complex interpreting assignments.

This one-hour webinar will provide a brief introduction on how to use WebBootCaT toolkit and concordance provided by Sketch Engine to build a specialised corpus for terminology extraction, using a medical interpreting task as a case study. The use of core technologies in Corpus Linguistics will be explained and the methodological challenges will be addressed to assist participants’ understanding and to improve their competence in using corpus tools. At the end of the session, participants will have seen how to compile and use specialised corpora for specialist interpreting.

This webinar will also use first-hand teaching experience to explain that, although interpreters would be remiss not to consult corpus resources, in practice, the emphasis of training should be on procedures or methodology, taking into account interpreter trainees’ linguistic-translational competence, their meta-linguistic and meta-translational awareness, observation and reflection skills, etc. Specialist interpreting trainers might find this discussion helpful and can systematically apply such training methods to new learning contexts.

NOTE: Although all examples provided will be in Chinese, this webinar is relevant for interpreters and interpreter trainers working with any language pair.