11a) Translating Czech castles

Ludek Knittl (Russian and Slavonic Studies), Professor Neil Bermel (Russian and Slavonic Studies)

Second Session (12:20 – 13:20) 
Discovery Room 2

What is this about?
The session will report on the background, process and outcomes of the HEIF funded project Putting translation into practice in the service of Czech heritage. The project had multiple aims. It was designed to give students a taste of real-life translation resulting in a portfolio of materials for prospective employers. Additionally, the students learned about organising and managing work as a team and gained experience in using technology similar to that used in professional translation. Improved language skills were a side effect of the process. The students reflected on the process throughout and were encouraged to think about the skills they were bringing to the project, the obstacles they were encountering and how they worked around them. Using the framework of linguistic landscapes, we also increased the students’ awareness of multilingual spaces and the changes their translation work brings to the environment in which they work.

How will colleagues benefit?
Colleagues will see an example of good practice that promotes student self-awareness as regards their skills and knowledge - an asset in communication with prospective employers. The project’s goals included enhancing students’ linguistic knowledge, as well as increasing their employability through teamwork. Pedagogically, it shows how to establish a framework for students to learn through practical experience in their field of study. By taking the project partly outside the academic environment and encouraging students to reflect on the process, we help them become aware of their own skills and abilities. We will explain how the process of teaching/preparation for the project was done through a series of workshops and a gradual transfer of responsibility for the project over to the students. We will also talk about how external engagement with impact beyond compulsory assessment can lead to high levels of motivation and engagement in team work.


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