Training sign language interpreters | Статья в журнале «Молодой ученый»

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Авторы: ,

Рубрика: Педагогика

Опубликовано в Молодой учёный №25 (367) июнь 2021 г.

Дата публикации: 19.06.2021

Статья просмотрена: 19 раз

Библиографическое описание:

Краюшкина, У. К. Training sign language interpreters / У. К. Краюшкина, Е. А. Мелехина. — Текст : непосредственный // Молодой ученый. — 2021. — № 25 (367). — С. 424-425. — URL: https://moluch.ru/archive/367/82564/ (дата обращения: 14.06.2024).



This article reveals the evolution of the main approaches in teaching interpreting. The authors consider the issue of establishing the principles for the training of the Russian and American sign languages interpreters, as well as formulate the dependence of the chosen teaching methods on the defined role of the sign language interpreter.

Keywords: training, sign language interpreter, interpreting, educational approach.

The moment translator education became available in educational institutions, teachers were faced with the question: what to teach students in order to get qualified translators who have reached the level of competence sufficient for successful performance of their work. Ethylvia Arjona, former Director of the graduate school of translation and interpretation at the Middlebury Institute of international studies in Monterey, believed that programs for training translators should ensure that students achieve a level of knowledge of the discipline that will allow them to «freely and accurately convey a message from the speaker to the listener, thereby bridging the communication gap in a meaningful way» [2, p. 35].

One of the problems is that there is no agreement within the specialists in the field as to what the basic situation of translation is and what the translator must know and be able to do in order to properly participate in it. Training programs are usually based on theories that are borrowed from translation studies, training exercises, and information processing methods that are applicable to teaching spoken languages. In addition, translation courses are built around the concept of «translator as a text reproducer». In this framework, the correctness (or equivalence) of the text is central, the speakers are secondary, and the listeners are anonymous.

The first University programs to train American Sign Language interpreters (Amslen) were established in the mid-1970s and were part of speech communication training programs or teacher training programs for the deaf at universities or colleges. The first stage of most of the curricula of such programs was Sign language training. After a year, students were considered ready to start learning to translate, regardless of their general level of education, their knowledge of the spoken national language, and their experience of communicating with representatives of the deaf culture.

As these programs have evolved, some linguistic discoveries have determined that Amslen has the same structural levels as spoken languages. In the 1970s and 1980s, linguists described the grammatical structure of American Sign language, which was so new and interesting that it became a major focus in the translation learning process. Now that the national sign and spoken languages have been defined as the two languages that translators work with, teachers have come to the conclusion that students must have a good command of both languages in order to master the translation profession [4, p. 37]. And the translator training segment has become a program for improving speech fluency.

When students moved into translation classes and attempted direct and reverse translation, vocabulary and sentences were the focus of their attention: they learned which signs were «conceptually accurate» equivalents of specific English words, phrases, and sentences. Thus, the courses began to focus primarily on the details in the form of the message, and not on the communicative situation as a whole [3, p. 168]. Accordingly, training then focused on accuracy and speed. Success or failure was defined as the degree of maximum approximation of the translated and original message, not whether the tasks of the speech act were completed.

This perspective misses the dynamism of the conversation: participants in a communication situation ask each other questions, argue, complain, or joke. Also missing is the dynamic activity during which the translator helps this exchange and manages the direction of the conversation. Conversation as text is removed from the natural process of normal conversation. This way of thinking corresponds to the conduit model of language and communication. Using this model to describe the role and functions of the translator reveals the hidden perception of the role of the translator as passive and neutral.

Ethylvia Arjona was one of the first educators to base the program on the idea that «the translation process takes place in a situational/cultural context, which is itself an integral part of the process and which must be analyzed in order to bridge the gap between the speaker's audience and the receptor's audience. This transfer should include unique linguistic, paralinguistic, and logical systems of interpersonal communication that are typical for both the sender and the receptor» [2, p. 37].

Over time, other American researchers have increasingly come to the conclusion that translation is an active process of interaction between two languages and cultures, and that the theoretical foundations of social interaction, sociolinguistics, and discursive analysis are more suitable for analyzing the task of translation.

In Russia, the second Millennium also saw a paradigm shift: the system of training Russian Sign language translators evolved from primitive Sign language training, which replaced the training of future translators, to complex methods aimed at developing the necessary competence of translation specialists. The «cross-cultural» nature of the translation process was admitted and, accordingly, attempts were made to adapt the learning process. Currently, the main approaches to organizing this process in Russia are communicative (for example, Novosibirsk State Technical University) and cognitive-communicative approaches (for example, Russian State Social University).

The communicative approach to learning began its formation in 2007 on the basis of the Institute of Social Technologies and Rehabilitation of NSTU. The main characteristic of this approach is immersion in the language environment without using the spoken national language in the learning process. When using this approach, visual video materials, story illustrations are widely used, and communication between students and students is carried out using pantomime, sign language, and body language. At the initial stage, students learn to «depict people, objects, things, then actions, starting from pantomime, then a smooth transition to gestures» [1, p. 49]. In addition, various trainings and game activities are conducted, the main purpose of which is to liberate students and encourage the use of emotions in the communication process. As the stock of gestures of future translators expands, more complex exercises are introduced into the educational process: the case method (for example, the introduction of a problem situation, an argument for a dispute, etc.), the «language club» (the use of the project method by teachers). The final stage in the training of translators is the study of the «translation theory» aspect, as well as the practice of consecutive and simultaneous translation.

The main distinguishing feature of the second approach is the reliance on creating the students' need to know a number of lexical units of sign language, i.e. cognitive needs. During the learning process, students are given a topic, they define a set of lexemes, knowledge of which is necessary in this topic, and request their translation from the teacher. After that, students use the signs they have learned when completing tasks. The advantage of the method is recognized as a more successful assimilation of language units, since in the mind of a person «all that is associated with his need, interest and desire of the student is remembered and preserved» [1, p. 50].

The history and culture of the Deaf occupy an important place in any methodology used in educational institutions in Russia. This aspect is an integral part of the curriculum, since the translation process is an interaction of cultures, and without knowledge of the cultural realities and peculiarities of the community's perception of the world, it is impossible to translate a message in Sign language.

To sum up, we observe a gradual change in approaches to training Sign language translators as linguistic research on the translation language system develops, the nature of the translation process, and the role of the translator in it. Recognizing that translation is a discursive process, and that the translator is an active participant in it, who needs to know and understand interactive behavior, as well as how the language is used by representatives of the cultures involved, changes our perception of what translators do. This updated view of how translators actually perform their task, in turn, leads to a change in educational practices.

References:

  1. Kamneva V. P., Afanas'eva O. O., Harlamenkov A. E. Uchebnoe posobie dlja obuchenija perevodchikov russkogo zhestovogo jazyka v pro-fessional'nyh obrazovatel'nyh organizacijah i obrazovatel'nyh organizacijah vysshego obrazovanija. — Moskva, 2016. — 166 s.
  2. Arjona E. Intercultural Communication and the Training of Interpreters at the Monterey Institute of Foreign Studies // Language Interpretation and Communication. — 1978. — P. 35–44. — doi: 10.1007/978–1-4615–9077–4_5
  3. Goffman E. Forms of Talk. — University of Pennsylvania Press, 1981. — 335 p.
  4. McIntyre D. J. Teacher Evaluation and the Observer Effect // NASSP Bulletin — 1980. — Vol. 64, iss. 434. — P. 36–40. — doi: 10.1177/019263658006443408
Основные термины (генерируются автоматически): NASSP, NSTU.


Ключевые слова

training, sign language interpreter, interpreting, educational approach

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