International Science Index

International Journal of Cognitive and Language Sciences

Investigating Secondary Students’ Attitude Towards Learning English
The aim of this study was to investigate secondary (grades IX and X) students’ attitudes towards learning the English language based on the medium of instruction of the school, the gender of the students and the grade level in which they studied. A further aim was to determine students’ proficiency in the English language according to their gender, the grade level and the medium of instruction of the school. A survey was used to investigate the attitudes of secondary students towards English language learning. Simple random sampling was employed to obtain a representative sample of the target population for the research study as a comprehensive list of established English medium schools, and newly established English medium schools were available. A questionnaire ‘Attitude towards English Language Learning’ (AtELL) was adapted from a research study on Libyan secondary school students’ attitudes towards learning English language. AtELL was reviewed by experts (n=6) and later piloted on a representative sample of secondary students (n= 160). Subsequently, the questionnaire was modified - based on the reviewers’ feedback and lessons learnt during the piloting phase - and directly administered to students of grades 9 and 10 to gather information regarding their attitudes towards learning the English language. Data collection spanned a month and a half. As the data were not normally distributed, the researcher used Mann-Whitney tests to test the hypotheses formulated to investigate students’ attitudes towards learning English as well as proficiency in the language across the medium of instruction of the school, the gender of the students and the grade level of the respondents. Statistical analyses of the data showed that the students of established English medium schools exhibited a positive outlook towards English language learning in terms of the behavioural, cognitive and emotional aspects of attitude. A significant difference was observed in the attitudes of male and female students towards learning English where females showed a more positive attitude in terms of behavioural, cognitive and emotional aspects as compared to their male counterparts. Moreover, grade 10 students had a more positive attitude towards learning English language in terms of behavioural, cognitive and emotional aspects as compared to grade 9 students. Nonetheless, students of newly established English medium schools were more proficient in English as gauged by their examination scores in this subject as compared to their counterparts studying in established English medium schools. Moreover, female students were more proficient in English while students studying in grade 9 were less proficient in English than their seniors studying in grade 10. The findings of this research provide empirical evidence to future researchers wishing to explore the relationship between attitudes towards learning language and variables such as the medium of instruction of the school, gender and the grade level of the students. Furthermore, policymakers might revisit the English curriculum to formulate specific guidelines that promote a positive and gender-balanced outlook towards learning English for male and female students.
American Slang: Perception and Connotations – Issues of Translation
The English language that is taught in school or used in media nowadays is defined as 'standard English,' although unstandardized Englishes, or 'parallel' Englishes, are practiced throughout the world. The existence of these 'parallel' Englishes has challenged standardization by imposing its own specific vocabulary or grammar. These non-standard languages tend to be regarded as inferior and, therefore, pose a problem regarding their translation. In the USA, 'slanguage', or slang, is a good example of a 'parallel' language. It consists of a particular set of vocabulary, used mostly in speech, and rarely in writing. Qualified as vulgar, often reduced to an urban language spoken by young people from lower classes, slanguage – or the language that is often first spoken between youths – is still the most common language used in the English-speaking world. Moreover, it appears that the prime meaning of 'informal' (as in an informal language) – a language that is spoken with persons the speaker knows – has been put aside and replaced in the general mind by the idea of vulgarity and non-appropriateness, when in fact informality is a sign of intimacy, not of vulgarity. When it comes to translating American slang, the main problem a translator encounters is the image and the cultural background usually associated with this 'parallel' language. Indeed, one will have, unwillingly, a predisposition to categorize a speaker of a 'parallel' language as being part of a particular group of people. The way one sees a speaker using it is paramount, and needs to be transposed into the target language. This paper will conduct an analysis of American slang – its use, perception and the image it gives of its speakers – and its translation into French, using the novel Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (and other concerns) by way of example. In her autobiography/personal essay book, comedy writer, actress and author Mindy Kaling speaks with a very familiar English, including slang, which participates in the construction of her own voice and style, and enables a deeper connection with her readers.
Variation in Complement Order in English: Implications for Interlanguage Syntax
Complement ordering principles of natural language phrases (XPs) stipulate that Head terms be consistently placed phrase initially or phrase-finally, yielding two basic theoretical orders – Head – Complement order or Complement – Head order. This paper examines the principles which determine complement ordering in English V- and N-bar structures. The aim is to determine the extent to which complement linearisations in the two phrase types are consistent with the two theoretical orders outlined above given the flexible and varied nature of natural language structures. The objective is to see whether there are variation(s) in the complement linearisations of the XPs studied and the implications which such variations hold for the inter-language syntax of English and Ibibio. A corpus-based approach was employed in obtaining the English data. V- and -N – bar structures containing complement structures were isolated for analysis. Data were examined from the perspective of the X-bar and Government – theories of Chomsky’s (1981) Government-Binding format. Findings from the analysis show that in V – bar structures in English, heads are consistently placed phrase – initially yielding a Head – Complement order; however, complement linearisation in the N – bar structures studied exhibited parametric variations. Thus, in some N – bar structures in English the nominal head is ordered to the left whereas in others, the head term occurs to the right. It may therefore be concluded that the principles which determine complement ordering are both Language – Particular and Phrase – specific following insights provided within Phrasal Syntax.
Stress and Rhythm in the Educated Nigerian Accent of English
The intention of this paper is to examine stress in the Educated Nigerian Accent of English (ENAE) with the aim of analyzing stress and rhythmic patterns of Nigerian English. Our aim also is to isolate differences and similarities in the stress patterns studied and also know what forms the accent of these Educated Nigerian English (ENE) which marks them off from other groups or English’s of the world, to ascertain and characterize it and to provide documented evidence for its existence. Nigerian stress and rhythmic patterns are significantly different from the British English stress and rhythmic patterns consequently, the educated Nigerian English (ENE) features more stressed syllables than the native speakers’ varieties. The excessive stressed of syllables causes a contiguous “Ss” in the rhythmic flow of ENE, and this brings about a “jerky rhythm’ which distorts communication. To ascertain this claim, ten (10) Nigerian speakers who are educated in the English Language were selected by a stratified Random Sampling technique from two Federal Universities in Nigeria. This classification belongs to the education to the educated class or standard variety. Their performance was compared to that of a Briton (control). The Metrical system of analysis was used. The respondents were made to read some words and utterance which was recorded and analyzed perceptually, statistically and acoustically using the one-way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA). The Turky-Kramer Post Hoc test, the Wilcoxon Matched Pairs Signed Ranks test, and the Praat analysis software were used in the analysis. It was revealed from our findings that the Educated Nigerian English speakers feature more stressed syllables in their productions by spending more time in pronouncing stressed syllables and sometimes lesser time in pronouncing the unstressed syllables. Their overall tempo was faster. The ENE speakers used tone to mark prominence while the native speaker used stress to mark pronounce, typified by the control. We concluded that the stress pattern of the ENE speakers was significantly different from the native speaker’s variety represented by the control’s performance.
A Socio-Pragmatic Investigation of Gender Enactment in New Month Text Messages
This paper undertakes a socio-pragmatic investigation of gender enactment in new month text messages. This study employs Gumperz’s Interactional Sociolinguistics as its theoretical point of reference to investigate how people create meaning through social interaction. This theory attempts to analyse any social interaction based on contextualization cues and presuppositions. This study explores the appropriateness of language used in texting. The text messages are collected from different mobile phones from different genders, which form the data for this paper. The study observes remarkable differences between genders in the use of informal language. The study reveals that men and women differ remarkably in conversational interaction as well as in writing. While it is observed that women are emotional, orderly, and meticulous, detailed and observed certain grammatical rules, men are casual, brief and appear to show evidence that less attention is paid to grammatical rules. Also, the study shows women as relaxing, showing love, care, concern with their emotive, spirit-raising and touching language, while mean are direct, short, and straight to the point. It is discovered through the study that women behave this way because of their brain-wiring. That is why language and communication matter more to women than to men and this reflects in their new month text messages.
Embracing Transculturality by Internationalising the EFL Classroom
Over the last decades, there has been a rise in the use of CLIL (content and language integrated learning) methodology as a way of reinforcing FL (foreign language) acquisition. CLIL techniques have also been transferred to the formal instruction-based FL classroom where through content-based lessons and project work it can very often say that teachers are ‘clilling’ in the FL classroom. When it comes to motivating students to acquire an FL, we have to take into account that English is not your run-of-the-mill FL: English is an international language (EIL). Consequently, this means that EFL students should be able to use English as an international medium of communication. This leads to the assumption that along with FL competence, speakers of EIL will need to become competent international citizens with knowledge of other societies, both contextually and geographically, and be flexible, open-minded, respectful and sensitive towards other world groups. Rather than ‘intercultural’ competence we should be referring to ‘transcultural’ competence. This paper reports the implementation of a content- and task-based approach to EFL teaching which was applied to two groups of 15 year-olds from two schools on the Spanish island of Mallorca during the school year 2015-2016. Students worked on three units of work that aimed at ‘internationalising’ the classroom by introducing topics that would encourage them to become transculturally aware of the world in which they live. In this paper we discuss the feedback given by the teachers and students on various aspects of the approach in order to answer the following research questions: 1) To what extent were the students motivated by the content and activities of the classes?; 2) Did this motivation have a positive effect on the students’ overall results for the subject; 3) Did the participants show any signs of becoming transculturally aware. Preliminary results from qualitative data show that the students enjoyed the move away from the more traditional EFL content and, as a result, they became more competent in speaking and writing. Students also appeared to become more knowledgeable and respectful towards the ‘other’. The EFL approach described in this paper takes a more qualitative approach to research by describing what is really going on in the EFL classroom and makes a conscious effort to provide real examples of not only the acquisition of linguistic competence but also the acquisition of other important communication skills that are of utmost importance in today's international arena.
Defining Heritage Language Learners of Arabic: Linguistic and Cultural Factors
Heritage language learners (HLL) are part of the linguistic reality in Foreign Language Learning (FLL). These learners present several characteristics that are different from non-heritage language learners. They have a personal connection with the language and their motivation to learn the language is partly because of this personal connection. In Canada there is a large diversity in the foreign language learning classroom; the Arabic language classroom is no exception. The Arabic HLL is unique for more than one reason. First, is the fact that the Arabic language is spoken across twenty-two Arab countries across the Arab World. Across the Arab World there is a standard variation and a local dialect that co-exist side by side, i.e. diaglossia exists in a strong and unique way as a feature of Arabic. Second, Arabic is the language that all Muslims across the Muslim World use for their prayers. This raises a number of points when we consider Arabic as a Heritage Language; namely the role of diaglossia, culture and religion. The fact that there is a group of leaners that can be regarded as HLL who are not of Arabic speaking background but are Muslims and use the language for religious purposes is unique, thus course developers and language instructors need take this into consideration. The paper takes a closer look at this distinction and establishes sub-groups the Arabic HLLs in a language and/or culture specific way related mainly to the Arabic HLL. It looks at the learners at the beginners’ Arabic class at the undergraduate university level over a period of three years in order to define this learner. Learners belong to different groups and backgrounds but they all share common characteristics. The paper presents a detailed look at the learner types present at this class in order to help prepare and develop material for this specific learner group. The paper shows that separate HLL and non-HLL courses, especially at the introductory and intermediate level, is successful in resolving some of the pedagogical problems that occur in the Arabic as a Foreign Language classroom. In conclusion, the paper recommends the development of HLL courses at the early levels of language learning. It calls for a change in the pedagogical practices to overcome some of the challenges learner in the introductory Arabic class can face.
Aitys as the Kazakh Traditional Music Genre in the Sense of Cognitive Musicology
Aitys is a competitional performance of two or more poets creating instantly the lyrics of music concerning the social issues accompanied with the traditional instrument dombra. It is an unique music genre, because it is not practical to create music and lyrics spontaneous in anywhere else. This research study tends to approach to this particular music genre Aitys and identify its significance not only in the sense of the Kazakh cultural heritage, but also from the perspective of personal development as the improvisational , oratory, public performance skills within the ability to think critically over the social problems and represent them in convenient to public form. Through conducting this research, this paper aims to reveal the importance and beneficence of aitys in terms of both prevalence of cultural heritage and its function in personal development of the singer. In order to answer to the research question, we conducted a survey and an in-depth interview with the students of Nazarbayev University. In the survey it was asked to answer the general questions about aitys and its importance, whereas in the interview part, we asked their opinion on the importance of aitys in improving the personal skills. The results of findings was more surprising than it was expected. They agreed that the aitys lessons, workshops and concerts have high outcomes in terms improvements of improvisational, oratory, and leadership skills. Students of NU as a representors of young generation have shown a great interest in aitys, and even more interested in the topics/social issues, where the poets have to defend their usually controversial position. To conclude, the research study has focused on the importance of the aitys in personal development of different leadership skills. The given research lead us to think about the aitys as a part of cognitive musicology, where within the learning of music it represents the process of cognition as well.
Abstract— No any other religion can compare with Islam in the revolutionary changes it introduced in the status and position of Women. These changes required a major re-adjustment in the way Women were to be evaluated and treated, both legally and morally. Islam is the only religion that emancipated Women from the bondage of cultural and in human subjugation throughout the history. Women Worldwide demand equal rights. There is no a system of law that preserves, maintain and protect what are truly Women's rights and status as much as Islamic law does, whether in the past or in modern times. The Prophet of Islam (Peace be upon him) in his lifetime demonstrated the new way that Islam wants women to be treated. It seems from a study of Muslim social development that after the period of the four orthodox caliphs, this new Islamic status for women, being contrary to the inherited prejudices and customs of some newly Islamized societies, was gradually suppressed and down-graded. It is therefore very important for every Muslim to put aside his prejudices and absorb the words of his creator about the status of Women, and to take as his model the Prophet's own example in this respect. This paper intends to examine and deals with each aspect of a Woman's status in Islam with quotations from the Qur'an and Hadiths, the original sources.
Dynamics of Hybrid Language in Urban and Rural Uttar Pradesh India
The dynamics of culture expresses itself in language. Even after India got independence in 1947 English subtly crept in the language of the masses with a silent and powerful flow towards the vernacular. The culture contact resulted in learning and emergence of a new language across the Hindi speaking belt of Northern and Central India. The hybrid words thus formed displaced the original word and got contextualized and absorbed in the language of the common masses. The research paper explores the interesting new vocabulary used extensively in the urban and rural districts of the state of Uttar- Pradesh which is the most populous state of India. The paper adopts a two way classification- formal and contextual for the analysis of the hybrid vocabulary of the linguistic items where one element is necessarily from the English language and the other from the Hindi. The new vocabulary represents languages of the wider world cutting across the geographical and the cultural barriers. The paper also broadly points out to the Hinglish commonly used in the state.
English Language Teaching and Learning Analysis in Iran
Although English is not a second language in Iran, it has become an inseparable part of many Iranian people’s lives and is becoming more and more widespread. This high demand has caused a significant increase in the number of private English language institutes in Iran. Although English is a compulsory course in schools and universities, the majority of Iranian people are unable to communicate easily in English. This paper reviews the current state of teaching and learning English as an international language in Iran. Attitudes and motivations about learning English are reviewed. Five different aspects of using English within the country are analyzed, including: English in public domain, English in Media, English in organizations/businesses, English in education, and English in private language institutes. Despite the time and money spent on English language courses in private language institutes, the majority of learners seem to forget what has been learned within months of completing their course. That is, when they are students with the support of the teacher and formal classes, they appear to make progress and use English more or less fluently. When this support is removed, their language skills either stagnant or regress. The findings of this study suggest that a dependent approach to learning is potentially one of the main reasons for English language learning problems and this is encouraged by English course books and approaches to teaching.
Functionality of Promotional and Advertising Texts: Pragmatic Implications for English-Arabic Translation
In business promotion and advertising, language is used intentionally to create a powerful influence over people and their behavior. In commercial and marketing activities, the choice of language to convey specific messages with the intention of influencing people is pragmatically important. Design and visual content in promotional and advertising texts also have a great persuasive impact on consumers. It is the functional combination of design, language and visual content that helps people to identify a product or service and remember it. Translating promotional and advertising texts between structurally and culturally different languages, such as English and Arabic, usually involves pragmatic/functional shifts that decide the quality of translation. This study explores some of these shifts in translating promotional and advertising texts between English and Arabic and their implications for translation quality. The study is based on a contrastive analysis of data collected from real samples of English-Arabic translations of promotional and advertising texts. The samples cover different promotional and advertising text types and different business domains. The aim is to identify the most recurrent translation shifts and most used translation approaches/strategies that achieve quality in view of the functional nature of promotional and advertising texts and target language culture conventions. The study shows that linguistic shifts and visual shifts are recurrent in English-Arabic translations of promotional and advertising texts. The study also shows that the most commonly used translation approaches/strategies are functional translation, domestication, communicative translation.
Explicitation as a Non-Professional Translation Universal: Evidence from the Translation of Promotional Material
Following the explicitation hypothesis, it has been proposed that explicitation is a translation universal, i.e., one of those features that characterize translated texts, and cannot be traced back to interference from a particular language. The explicitation hypothesis has been enthusiastically endorsed by some scholars, and firmly rejected by others. Focusing on the translation of promotional material from English into Arabic, specifically in the luxury goods market, the aims of this study are twofold: First, to contribute to the debate regarding the notion of explicitation in order to advance our understanding of what has become a contentious concept. Second, to add to the growing body of literature on non-professional translation by shedding light on this particular aspect of it. To this end, our study uses a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods to explore a corpus of brochures pertaining to the luxury industry, translated into Arabic at the local marketing agencies promoting the brands in question, by bilingual employees who have no translation training. Our data reveals a preference to avoid creative language choices in favor of more direct advertising messages, suggestive of a general tendency towards explicitation in non-professional translation, beyond what is dictated by the grammatical and stylistic constraints of Arabic. We argue, further, that this translation approach is at odds with the principles of luxury advertising, which emphasize implicitness and ambiguity, and view language as an extension of the creative process involved in the production of the luxury item.
Language Politics and Identity in Translation: From a Monolingual Text to Multilingual Text in Chinese Translations
This paper focuses on how the government-led language policies and the political changes in Taiwan manipulate the languages choice in translations and what translation strategies are employed by the translator to show his or her language ideology behind the power struggles and decision-making. Therefore, framed by Lefevere’s theoretical concept of translating as rewriting, and carried out a diachronic and chronological study, this paper specifically sets out to investigate the language ideology and translator’s idiolect of Chinese language translations of Anglo-American novels. The examples drawn to explore these issues were taken from different versions of Chinese renditions of Mark Twain’s English-language novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in which there are several different dialogues originally written in the colloquial language and dialect used in the American state of Mississippi and reproduced in Mark Twain’s works. Also, adapted corpus methodology, many examples are extracted as instances from the translated texts and source text, to illuminate how the translators in Taiwan deal with the dialectal features encoded in Twain’s works, and how different versions of Chinese translations are employed by Taiwanese translators to confirm the language policies and to express their language identity textually in different periods of the past five decades, from the 1960s onward. The finding of this study suggests that the use of Taiwanese dialect and language patterns in translations does relate to the movement of the mother-tongue language and language ideology of the translator as well as to the issue of language identity raised in the island of Taiwan. Furthermore, this study confirms that the change of political power in Taiwan does bring significantly impact in language policy--assimilationism, pluralism, multiculturalism, which also makes Taiwan from a monolingual to multilingual society, where the language ideology and identity can be revealed not only in people’s daily communication but also in written translations.
On the Inconsistent Translation of Posthumous Names in the Analects
The Analects contain 20-something personal names which follow the so-called 'posthumous name' format employed in the Zhou dynasty (~1000-221 BC). When reading texts from this period in Chinese it is obvious that the format of such names is very regular and predictable, yet in most of English translations the names of people with the titles zi 子 and bo 伯 are translated differently from those of individuals titled wang 王 or gong 公. This paper presents evidence to support the interpretation of 子 and 伯 belonging to the same semantic category as wang 王 and gong 公, and encourages future translators of the Analects to consistently apply the format '[title][name] of[domain]'. The paper also touches on the four individuals with zhong 仲 or shu 叔 in place of zi 子, as well as the special case of posthumous names for women, and argues that they should also follow this format.
Shaking the Iceberg: Metaphoric Shifting and Loss in the German Translations of 'The Sun Also Rises'
While the translation of 'literal language' poses numerous challenges for the translator, the translation of 'figurative language' creates even more complicated issues. It has been only in the last several decades that scholars have attempted to propose theories of figurative language translation, including metaphor translation. Even less work has applied these theories to metaphoric translation in literary texts. And almost no work has linked an analysis of metaphors in translation with the recent scholarship on conceptual metaphors. A study of literature in translation must not only examine the inevitable shifts that occur as specific metaphors move from source language to target language but also analyze the ways in which these shifts impact conceptual metaphors and, ultimately, the text as a whole. Doing so contributes to on-going efforts to bridge the sometimes wide gulf between considerations of content and form in literary studies. This paper attempts to add to the body of scholarly literature on metaphor translation and the function of metaphor in a literary text. Specifically, the study examines the metaphoric expressions in Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises. First, the issue of Hemingway and metaphor is addressed. Next, the study examines the specific metaphors in the original novel in English and the German translations, first in Annemarie Horschitz’s 1928 German version and then in the recent Werner Schmitz 2013 translation. Hemingway’s metaphors, far from being random occurrences of figurative language, are linguistic manifestations of deeper conceptual metaphors that are central to an interpretation of the text. By examining the modifications that are made to these original metaphoric expressions as they are translated into German, one can begin to appreciate the shifts involved with metaphor translation. The translation of Hemingway’s metaphors into German represents significant metaphoric loss and shifting that subsequently shakes the important conceptual metaphors in the novel.
Effectiveness of Interpreting Services in Addressing Health Needs of Minority Refugee Population in New Zealand
A significant number of people have been displaced from their country of origin and become refugees, mostly due to armed conflicts, political violence, and human rights abuse. In general, refugees have a poor state of health due to the extreme difficulties they have experienced during their refugee journey. Despite their compromised health status, refugees often face difficulties in accessing health services in their countries of resettlement due to a number of barriers; most commonly related to language and communication difficulties, financial hardships, and acculturation challenges. In 1991–1992, more than 100,000 Bhutanese citizens of Nepali origin became refugees. These Bhutanese refugees spend more than 18 years in refugee camps in Nepal, and most of them have now been resettled in eight different host countries; including the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Norway, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. The aim of this qualitative exploratory study was to examine the Effectiveness of Interpreting Services in addressing health needs of Bhutanese refugee women in New Zealand primary health care settings. This study was conducted in two phases. In the first phase, five focus group discussions were conducted with 32 Bhutanese refugee women. In addition, one focus group discussion was also conducted with eight Bhutanese refugee men. In the second phase, individual interviews were carried out with 12 health professionals, who were nurses (n=5), doctors (n=4) and midwives (n=3).The first phase of the study aimed to explore Bhutanese women’s experiences of accessing and utilizing interpreting services in New Zealand, the challenges they encountered and the ways in which they responded to these challenges. One focus group was also conducted with eight Bhutanese men, and the purpose of this focus group was to listen to Bhutanese men’s perspectives about the effectiveness of interpreting services in New Zealand in meeting the health needs of Bhutanese women. The second phase of the study was designed to gain an understanding of health professionals’ experiences of working with Bhutanese refugee women, their satisfaction with language support (interpreting) services, and to elicit comments and suggestions regarding interpreting services provided to Bhutanese women. Combining Phase One and Phase Two of the study data provided an overall picture of the effectiveness of interpreting services in addressing Bhutanese refugee women’s health needs in New Zealand. This study is the first of its kind in New Zealand, which examined the effectiveness of interpreting services in primary health care practices by exploring perspectives of those who are at the heart of healthcare: service users and service providers. Overall, the findings of this study indicated that there have been inadequacies and constraints in the provision of effective interpreting services to Bhutanese refugee women in New Zealand. This study provides evidence for recommendations to address these inadequacies. It is hoped that the results of this study will contribute to developing future strategies for delivering culturally and linguistically appropriate primary health care services to address health care needs of minority refugee population in New Zealand and other host countries.
The Changes in Motivations and the Use of Translation Strategies in Crowdsourced Translation: A Case Study on Global Voices’ Chinese Translation Project
Online crowdsourced translation, an innovative translation practice brought by Web 2.0 technologies and the democratization of information, has become increasingly popular in the Internet era. Carried out by grass-root internet users, crowdsourced translation contains fundamentally different features from its off-line traditional counterpart, such as voluntary participation and parallel collaboration. To better understand such a participatory and collaborative nature, this paper will use the online Chinese translation project of Global Voices as a case study to investigate the following issues: (1) the changes in volunteer translators’ and reviewers’ motivations for participation, (2) translators’ and reviewers’ use of translation strategies and (3) the correlations of translators’ and reviewers’ motivations and strategies with the organizational mission, the translation style guide, the translator-reviewer interaction, the mediation of the translation platform and various types of capital within the translation field. With an aim to systematically explore the above three issues, this paper will collect both quantitative and qualitative data and then draw upon Engestrom’s activity theory and Bourdieu’s field theory as a theoretical framework to analyze the data in question. An online anonymous questionnaire will be conducted to obtain the quantitative data. The questionnaire will contain questions related to volunteer translators’ and reviewers’ backgrounds, participation motivations, translation strategies and mutual relations as well as the operation of the translation platform. Concerning the qualitative data, they will come from (1) a comparative study between some English news texts published on Global Voices and their Chinese translations, (2) an analysis of the online discussion forum associated with Global Voices’ Chinese translation project and (3) the information about the project’s translation mission and guidelines. It is hoped that this research, through a detailed sociological analysis of a cause-driven crowdsourced translation project, can enable translation researchers and practitioners to adequately meet the translation challenges appearing in the digital age.
Towards Bridging the Gap between the ESP Classroom and the Workplace: Content and Language Needs Analysis in English for Administrative Studies Course
Croatia has made large steps forward in the development of higher education. Purposes and objectives of the tertiary education system are focused on the personal development of young people so that they obtain competences for employment on a flexible labor market. The most frequent tensions between the tertiary institutions and employers are complaints that the current tertiary education system still supplies students with an abundance of theoretical knowledge and not enough practical skills. Polytechnics and schools of professional higher education should deliver professional education and training that will satisfy the needs of their local communities. 21st century sets demand on undergraduates as well as their lecturers to strive for the highest standards. The skills students acquire during their studies should serve the needs of their future professional careers. In this context teaching English for Specific Purposes (ESP) presents an enormous challenge for teachers. They have to cope with teaching the language in classes with a large number of students, limitations of time, inadequate equipment and teaching material. Most frequently this leads to focusing on specialist vocabulary neglecting the development of skills and competences required for the future job. Globalization has transformed the labor market and set new standards a perspective employee should meet. When knowledge of languages is considered new generic skills and competences are required. Not only skillful written and oral communication is needed, but also information, media, and technology literacy, learning skills which include critical and creative thinking, collaborating and communicating, as well as social skills. The aim of this paper is to evaluate the needs of two groups of ESP first year Undergraduate Professional Administrative Study students taking ESP as a mandatory course: 47 first-year Undergraduate Professional Administrative Study students, 21 first-year employed part-time Undergraduate Professional Administrative Study student, and 30 graduates with degree in Undergraduate Professional Administrative Study with various amount of work experience. The survey adopted a quantitative approach with the aim to determine differences between the groups in their perception of the four language skills and different areas of law, as well as getting the insight into students' satisfaction with the current course and their motivation for studying ESP. Their perceptions will be compared to the results of the questionnaire conducted among the professionals in order to examine how they perceive the same elements of ESP course content and to what extent it fits into their working environment. The results of the survey indicated that there is a strong correlation between acquiring work experience and the level of importance given to particular areas of law studied in ESP course which corresponds to our initial hypothesis. In conclusion, the results of the survey should help the lecturers in re-evaluating and updating their ESP course syllabi.
Unpacking Chilean Preservice Teachers’ Beliefs on Practicum Experiences through Digital Stories
An EFL teacher education program in Chile takes five years to train a future teacher of English. Preservice teachers are prepared to learn C1 English and teach the language from 5th to 12th grade in the Chilean educational system. In the context of their first EFL Methodology course in year three, preservice teachers have to create a five-minute digital story that starts from a critical incident they have experienced as teachers during their observations or interventions in the schools. A critical incident can be defined as a happening, a specific incident or event either observed by them or involving them. The happening sparks their thinking and makes them subsequently think differently about the particular event. When they create their digital stories, preservice teachers put technology, teaching practice and theory together to narrate a story that is complemented by still images, moving images, text, sound effects and music. The story should be told as a personal narrative, which explains the critical incident. This presentation will focus on the creation process of fifty Chilean preservice teachers’ digital stories highlighting the critical incidents they started their stories from. It will also unpack preservice teachers’ beliefs and reflections when approaching their teaching practices in the schools. These beliefs will be coded and categorised through content analysis to evidence preservice teachers’ most rooted conceptions about English teaching and learning in Chilean schools. The findings seem to indicate that preservice teachers’ beliefs are strongly mediated by contextual and affective factors. Finally, some samples of the preservice teachers’ digital stories will be shared with the audience.
Statistical Modeling of Mandarin Tone Sandhi: Neutralization of Underlying Pitch Targets
Tone sandhi is the tonal alternation of a tone according to the phonological environment it occurs. There is one famous third tone sandhi rule in Mandarin Chinese: T3 (213) → T2 (35)/___ T3 (213). This study statistically models both the surface f0 contour and the underlying pitch target of this well-studied third sandhi tone. The stimuli included eight real disyllabic words with the tonal combination T3 + T3 (213 + 213) and eight fillers, in order to disguise the purpose of this study. The consonants and vowels were controlled to avoid consonant perturbation and intrinsic f0 perturbation effects. Thirteen participants were recruited, who were native speakers of Mandarin. They were presented with pairs of the modified monosyllables using E-prime in a randomized order. Participants were instructed that after hearing the two monosyllables presented, they should put the two monosyllables together to form a disyllabic word in Mandarin. They were also recorded reading monosyllables bearing T2 in isolation. The recorded speech data were segmented, and f0 values were obtained at 20 normalized time points in each segmented interval. A logarithmic Z-score normalization on f0 values was performed before statistical modeling. The growth curve analysis on the surface f0 contours also indicates non-neutralization of the third sandhi tone and T2, therefore their underlying pitch targets were modeled instead. In doing so, the statistical model fitting procedure first obtained the optimal statistical model for underlying pitch targets of tones, and then tested whether the underlying target was linear or quadratic. Afterwards, the models were used to test whether two underlying pitch targets were the same or not. The procedure applied to the Mandarin third tone sandhi showed neutralization results of the third sandhi tone and T2, consistent with the results of perceptual experiments. The results obtained in the current study showed inconsistency of perceptual results when modeling the surface tone, but more consistent results with perceptual experiments when modeling underlying pitch targets. The statistical modeling on the underlying pitch targets corresponds to the characteristics of a tone sandhi process involving stability, categorical shift and influence on the entire part of the tones. Separating the two modeling procedure may solve the paradox of non-neutralization of the surface f0 contours and neutralization in perceptual experiments. Native speakers may be able to compensate variation on the surface because of neutralization of underlying pitch targets. Statistical modeling of the acoustic data is conducive to promoting our understanding of Mandarin tone sandhi and tone sandhi rules in general. These methods may be applied to other less familiar tonal languages to identify a categorical shift indicating a phonological tone sandhi rule.
Grammatically Coded Corpus of Spoken Lithuanian: Methodology and Development
The paper deals with the main issues of methodology of the Corpus of Spoken Lithuanian which was begun to be developed in 2006. At the moment the corpus consists of 250,000 grammatically annotated word forms. The creation of the Corpus consists of three main stages: collecting the data, the transcription of the recorded data, and the grammatical annotation. Collecting the data was based on the principles of balance and naturality. The principle of balance means that we aimed at developing a representative corpus of modern Spoken Lithuanian that would be balanced from the perspective of a) different communication situations (such as institutional vs. familiar conversations); b) different socio-economic status of the informants; and c) different genre of conversation. To develop even more extensive data basis, different types of communication, i.e. direct and indirect conversations (phone conversations, TV/radio speech), were collected. The principle of naturality was particularly respected when collecting the data. It was essential for our purposes that the speakers could communicate naturally while recording their conversations. Therefore, it was decided to inform the speakers about recording only after the recording process ends. The recorded speech was transcribed according to the CHAT requirements of program CHILDES. Transcribing the data we faced the problem of speech segmentation. While a sentence is generally considered the main syntactical unit of written language, the main units of spoken language are still under discussion. In our case, an utterance, i.e. a stretch of speech preceded and followed either by silence or by a change of speakers, was agreed to be the main transcription unit. However, it was not that simple to distinguish one utterance from another in spontaneous adult speech. People speak very fast, they tend to interrupt or overlap each other and this cause difficulties in decision where one utterance ends and the other begins. The utterances were transcribed orthographically; contextual notes were inserted where necessary. The transcripts were double-checked and annotated grammatically using CHILDES. CHILDES annotates the transcribed data semi-automatically by looking up the grammatically annotated lexicon that consists of the 65,000 most frequently used Lithuanian word forms. The main problem we faced was related to morphological disambiguation. Due to a high rate (up to 70% of all word forms), of morphological ambiguity in Lithuanian language, this stage of the Corpus development was extremely time consuming. In addition, from the Lithuanian language lexicon, only about 50 % of words were recognised. The other more than 50 % of words have to be annotated manually. It is so because of the special characteristics of spoken language, such as shortened word forms, and jargon. The development of the Corpus of Spoken Lithuanian has lead to constant increase in studies on spontaneous communication. Various papers have dealt with a distribution of parts of speech, use of different grammatical forms, variation of inflectional paradigms, distribution of fillers, syntactic functions of adjectives, the mean lengh of utterances.
A Fine String between Weaving the Text and Patching It: Reading beyond the Hidden Symbols and Antithetical Relationships in the Classical and Modern Arabic Poetry
This study reveals the extension and continuity between the classical Arabic poetry and modern Arabic poetry through investigation of its ambiguity, symbolism, and antithetical relationships. The significance of this study lies in its exploration and discovering of a new method of reading classical and modern Arabic poetry. The study deals with the Fatimid poetry and discovers a new method to read it. It also deals with the relationship between the apparent and the hidden meanings of words through focusing on how the paradoxical antithetical relationships change the meaning of the whole poem and give it a different dimension through the use of Oxymorons. In our unprecedented research on Oxymoron, we found out that the words in modern Arabic poetry are used in unusual combinations that convey apparent and hidden meanings. In some cases, the poet introduces an image with a symbol of a certain thing, but the reader soon discovers that the symbol includes its opposite, too. The question is: How does the reader find that hidden harmony in that apparent disharmony? The first and most important conclusion of this study is that the Fatimid poetry was written for two types of readers: religious readers who know the religious symbols and the hidden secret meanings behind the words, and ordinary readers who understand the apparent literal meaning of the words. Consequently, the interpretation of the poem is subject to the type of reading. In Fatimid poetry we found out that the hunting-journey is a journey of hidden esoteric knowledge; the Horse is al-Naqib, a religious rank of the investigator and missionary; the Lion is Ali Ibn Abi Talib. The words black and white, day and night, bird, death and murder have different meanings and indications. Our study points out the importance of reading certain poems in certain periods in two different ways: the first depends on a doctrinal interpretation that transforms the external apparent (ẓāher) meanings into internal inner hidden esoteric (bāṭen) ones; the second depends on the interpretation of antithetical relationships between the words in order to reveal meanings that the poet hid for a reader who participates in the processes of creativity. The second conclusion is that the classical poem employed symbols, oxymora and antonymous and antithetical forms to create two poetic texts in one mold and form. We can conclude that this study is pioneering in showing the constant paradoxical relationship between the apparent and the hidden meanings in classical and modern Arabic poetry.
Language and Intercultural Learning: Multiple Case Studies of Pre-Service Teachers in an English Immersion Program
This research study adopted a mixed-methods design to explore the language and intercultural learning trajectories of pre-service English language teachers from a university in Hong Kong who participated in an 8-week English immersion program in the United Kingdom. The participants’ language and intercultural learning experiences were investigated before the sojourn, during the short-term SA program, immediately after the sojourn, and four months after the sojourn. Quantitative and qualitative data were collected through questionnaire surveys, semi-structured interviews, reflective journals, and pre-, and post-sojourn reflection written by the participants. By tracking the developmental trajectories of a small group of participants, this study sought to gain a deeper understanding of the internal and external factors that impacted their language and intercultural learning, including their evolving sense of self (identity), attitudes towards the language and language use, as well as language and cultural learning strategies. Findings revealed that language and intercultural learning abroad were complex. The participants’ study abroad experiences were impacted by a mix of individual differences and environmental factors. Drawing on the findings, this presentation offers suggestions to enhance the language and intercultural learning experiences of students who join a SA program.
Surveying Geographies and Historic Personages in Contemporary Omani Poetry
This paper surveys the diverse geographies and historic personages that appear in contemporary Omani poetry. In the post-1970s era, Omani poetry has changed significantly due to the effects of the modernization process in the Sultanate. This paper will look at how different territories and personages from the past are reconfigured in contemporary Omani poetry to tackle taboo topics and interrogate the politics of individualism. While writers like Safi Al Rahbi and Hilal Al Hajri invoke pre-Islamic poets such as Shanfara and Imro al Qais (the father of classical Arabic poetry), other Omani poets conjure European writers like Karin Boye and Henry Barbusse. Revered Sufi poets like Al-Hallaj and Omar Khayyam appear in Omani poetry to challenge both societal and artistic norms. From the peaks of the Himalayas to the Ganges and Polar islands "where the ice melts / In installments," contemporary Omani poets have added an assortment of diverse landscapes to the geographic palette of Omani poetry. This paper will also demonstrate how Omani poets have expanded the temporal range of contemporary Omani poetry by weaving ancient characters and landscapes from ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, ancient Greece, and Byzantium into their poems. Finally, this paper will explore how the cities of Cambridge and Granada are framed as sites of personal and political liberation.
Structured-Ness and Contextual Retrieval Underlie Language Comprehension
While grammatical devices are essential to language processing, how comprehension utilizes cognitive mechanisms is less emphasized. This study addresses this issue by probing the complement coercion phenomenon: an entity-denoting complement following verbs like begin and finish receives an eventive interpretation. For example, (1) “The queen began the book” receives an agentive reading like (2) “The queen began [reading/writing/etc.…] the book.” Such sentences engender additional processing cost in real-time comprehension. The traditional account attributes this cost to an operation that coerces the entity-denoting complement to an event, assuming that these verbs require eventive complements. However, in closer examination, examples like “Chapter 1 began the book” undermine this assumption. An alternative, Structured Individual (SI) hypothesis, proposes that the complement following aspectual verbs (AspV; e.g. begin, finish) is conceptualized as a structured individual, construed as an axis along various dimensions (e.g. spatial, eventive, temporal, informational). The composition of an animate subject and an AspV such as (1) engenders an ambiguity between an agentive reading along the eventive dimension like (2), and a constitutive reading along the informational/spatial dimension like (3) “[The story of the queen] began the book,” in which the subject is interpreted as a subpart of the complement denotation. Comprehenders need to resolve the ambiguity by searching contextual information, resulting in additional cost. To evaluate the SI hypothesis, a questionnaire was employed. Method: Target AspV sentences such as “Shakespeare began the volume.” were preceded by one of the following types of context sentence: (A) Agentive-biasing, in which an event was mentioned (…writers often read…), (C) Constitutive-biasing, in which a constitutive meaning was hinted (Larry owns collections of Renaissance literature.), (N) Neutral context, which allowed both interpretations. Thirty-nine native speakers of English were asked to (i) rate each context-target sentence pair from a 1~5 scale (5=fully understandable), and (ii) choose possible interpretations for the target sentence given the context. The SI hypothesis predicts that comprehension is harder for the Neutral condition, as compared to the biasing conditions because no contextual information is provided to resolve an ambiguity. Also, comprehenders should obtain the specific interpretation corresponding to the context type. Results: (A) Agentive-biasing and (C) Constitutive-biasing were rated higher than (N) Neutral conditions (p< .001), while all conditions were within the acceptable range (> 3.5 on the 1~5 scale). This suggests that when lacking relevant contextual information, semantic ambiguity decreases comprehensibility. The interpretation task shows that the participants selected the biased agentive/constitutive reading for condition (A) and (C) respectively. For the Neutral condition, the agentive and constitutive readings were chosen equally often. Conclusion: These findings support the SI hypothesis: the meaning of AspV sentences is conceptualized as a parthood relation involving structured individuals. We argue that semantic representation makes reference to spatial structured-ness (abstracted axis). To obtain an appropriate interpretation, comprehenders utilize contextual information to enrich the conceptual representation of the sentence in question. This study connects semantic structure to human’s conceptual structure, and provides a processing model that incorporates contextual retrieval.
Walking in the Steps of Poets: Evoking Past Poets in Sufi Poetry
It is common practice in modern times to read mystical poetry and apply it to our mundane lives and loves. Sufis in the early period did the opposite. Their mystical hymns often spun out of the courtly poetic ghazal, panegyric, and wine songs. This paper highlights the relation of the Arabic courtly poetic canon to early Sufism. Sufi akhbār and poetry evoke past poets and their poetic heritage. They tend to quote or refer to eminent poets whose poetry must have been widely circulated and memorized. However, Sufism places this readily recognizable poetry in a new context that deliberately changes the past. It is a process of a metaphorization in which the reality of the pre-Islamic, Umayyad, and Abbasid models now acts as a device or metaphor for the Sufi poetics.
Countering Militancy in Islam: Inter-Religious Tolerance in Contemporary World
Now we are in the twenty ¬first century. The quality of research on both the inner and physical world has reached quite high levels by the tremendous stride in technological advancement and human intelligence. But, the world is also facing a lot of new problems, such as war, terrorism, arson, social crimes, injustice etc. Most, of which are man¬-made. The root cause of these is the inability of human beings to bring peace and tolerance. Infect today, Islam is grossly misunderstood and misinterpreted by both western scholars and some so-called Islamist and secular-oriented Muslim as a religion that promotes violence, terrorism and war. They thought that Islam is often shown as the “religion of the sword”. Islam, it is assumed, encourages Jihad, whose meaning, according to some scholars, is nothing but war against non-Muslim. Even they maintained Islam is regarded as giving non-Muslim religious minorities” an inferior status”. Now a days, most of the Muslim countries are polluted with corruption, poverty, exploitation of the poor, illiteracy, discrimination, and many other vices. But that is not the fault or any deficiency of Islam and its ideal. In reality Islam is basically and fundamentally a religion of tolerance, justice, fair play and universal brotherhood. Islam gave the world certain valuable principles in the seventh century and these, are as applicable today as they were fourteen centuries ago. Islam teaches its followers to show respect for other religions and the prophets of other religions, such as Christianity and Judaism are entitled to receive regard and respect from the follower of others. Islam is opposed to any form of coercion, suppression and oppression of people, irrespective of religion, color, race, language and sex. On the contrary, the consistent theme of Islamic principles as revealed in the Holy Quran and as practiced by the prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is to establish a universal socio-economic and political order based on a viable ethical foundation which rejects any form of discrimination on the ground of religion, race, color and ethnicity. This article deals with teaching of Islamic law regarding religious harmony in contemporary complex world and attitudes towards different religions. Only Islam can teach how to bring peace and sustainability in the human society. Finally, the paper urges the human being to follow the moral teaching of Islam for living with tolerance and peaceful coexistence in quarrel world.
Translation and Sociolinguistics of Classical Books
This paper aims to present research involving the translation of classical books originally in English and translated into the Portuguese language. The objective is to analyze the linguistic varieties evident and how they appear in the other language the work was translated into. We based our study on the sociolinguistics theory, more specifically, the study of the Black English Vernacular. Our methodology is built on collecting data from the speech characters of the Black English Vernacular from some books such as The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. On doing so, we compare the two versions of a book and how they reflected the linguistic variety. Our purpose is to show that some translators do not worry when dealing with linguistic variety. In other words, they just translate the story without taking into account some important linguistic aspects which need attention, such as language variation.
The Impact of Task-Based Language Teaching on Iranian Female Intermediate EFL Learners’ Writing Performance
This article investigated the impact of task-based language teaching (TBLT) on writing performance of the Iranian intermediate EFL learners. There were two groups of forty students of the intermediate female learners studying English in Jahad-e-Daneshgahi language institute, ranging in age from thirteen to nineteen. They participated in their regular classes in the institute and were assigned to two groups including an experimental group of task-based language teaching and a control group for the purpose of homogeneity, all students in two groups took an achievement test before the treatment. As a pre-test; students were assigned to write a task at the beginning of the course. One of the classes was conducted through talking a TBLT approach on their writing, while the other class followed regular patterns of teaching, namely traditional approach for TBLT group. There were some tasks chosen from learners’ textbook. The task selection was in accordance with learning standards for ESL and TOFEL writing sections. At the end of the treatment, a post-test was administered to both experimental group and the control group. Scoring was done on the basis of scoring scale of “expository writing quality scale”. The researcher used paired samples t-test to analyze the effect of TBLT teaching approach on the writing performance of the learners. The data analysis revealed that the subjects in TBLT group performed better on the writing performance post-test than the subjects in control group. The findings of the study also demonstrated that TBLT would enhance writing performance in the group of learners. Moreover, it was indicated that TBLT has been effective in teaching writing performance to Iranian EFL learners