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Title: Trainee Translators’ Autonomous and Reflective Learning – Using Diary, Think-Aloud and Small Group Discussion Activities
Authors: Chen, Ya-Yun
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: The purpose of the present study is to investigate how a group of Chinese trainee translators' learning processes might be facilitated by three reflective learning modes - diary, think-aloud, and small group discussion - in a trainer-led autonomous- learning setting. All of the trainee translators were students studying in a two-year MA interpreting and translating programme in the UK. Literature on the fields of translation pedagogy, autonomous learning, motivation and reflective learning is reviewed, followed by a more general review on previous research into the use of diary, think-aloud techniques and small group discussion in learning. A pilot study on three trainee translators was first carried out. In the main study, on 23 trainee translators, data was collected through interview investigation, questionnaire surveys, and a learning workshop in which each of the trainee translators experienced two of the three learning modes in question. Qualitative analyses were carried out to identify strengths and weaknesses of each learning mode and to explore the reasons behind them. A comparative analysis then identified the relative advantages and disadvantages among the three learning modes. The findings show that the diary learning mode facilitates problem identification through wider and deeper thinking, but is less capable of providing translation solutions. The think-aloud learning mode has several polarized effects: improving vs. deteriorating translation quality, increasing vs. decreasing translation speed, and helping identify problems vs. causing more mistakes. The small group discussion mode is better at providing solutions but risks misguiding discussion members. Comparative analysis suggests that heightened awareness of translating processes in all the three modes can result in more effective and efficient learning for trainee translators. The conclusion chapter discusses implications of the present study for translation training, followed by suggestions for translator trainers and possible further research.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Modern Languages

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