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Modern Approaches to Translation and Translation Studies

by Mehmet Cem Odacioglu (Volume editor)
Edited Collection 248 Pages

Summary

Modern Approaches to Translation and Translation Studies serves as a collection of research describing the development of the discipline and its journey that has not been completed. The book deals with the latest developments within Translation Studies from the perspective of Turkish translation scholars. It consists of thirteen chapters with the participation of fourteen different authors working at universities in Turkey as academicians or having pursued or still pursuing their PhD within Translation Studies. The book contains topics such as translation technologies, meta-cognitive approaches in translation, eco-translatology, translators’ employability, approaches in literary translation, feminist translation, intra- and inter-lingual translation, legal translation, multimodality, translatability/ untranslatability, and translation education.

Table Of Content

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the editor
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Preface
  • Table of Contents
  • List of Contributors
  • Being Strategic in the Translation Process: Metacognitive Skills of Translator Trainees (Ayşe Işık Akdağ)
  • Translator’s Subjectivity: Adaptation and Selection in Eco-Translatology (Barış Ağır)
  • The Effect of Post-Editing on Trainee Translators’ Translation Performance (Caner Çetiner and Korkut Uluç İşisağ)
  • A Review of Translation Studies Students’ Perspective on Machine Translation: Translation Student’s Experience and Expectations as End-User in the Case of Turkey (Evren Barut)
  • Analysis of Factors Affecting the Level of Perceived Future Employability of Students Studying in the Department of Translation and Interpreting Studies (Fadime Çoban and Pınar Koç)
  • Detection of Problems in the Turkish Translations of Subtitles of TED Talks and Contributions of Suggestions to These Problems in Terms of Translation Students’ Translation Competence Level (Fadime Çoban)
  • The Attitudes of Trainee Translators towards Writing Translation Commentaries: An Empirical Study (Halil İbrahim Balkul)
  • From Intralingual to Interlingual Translations: The Case of Pygmalion (Halise Gülmüş Sırkıntı)
  • Feminist Translation in Practice: An Analysis of Herland and Its Turkish Translation Kadınlar Ülkesi (İlknur Baytar)
  • Dimensionen des Verstehens im Umbruch (A. Nursen Durdaği)
  • Translating Law into a Non-European Language: The Case of ECtHR Judgments (Seda Dural)
  • Conceptualizing Multimodality in the Translation Classroom (Sevda Pekçoşkun Güner)
  • Achieving the Perfect Translation: Untranslatability (Teslime Gökgöl and Evren Barut)

List of Contributors

Barış Ağır

Asst. Prof., Department of English Language and Literature, Osmaniye Korkut Ata University, TURKEY, barisagir@hotmail.com

Ayşe Işık Akdağ

Dr, Istanbul University, Dept. of Foreign Languages, aysea@istanbul.edu.tr

Halil İbrahim Balkul

Ass. Prof. Department of Translation Studies, Sakarya University/TURKEY, hbalkul@sakarya.edu.tr

Evren Barut

Ass. Prof., Bartın University, School of Foreign Languages, Department of Foreign Languages, evrenbarut@bartin.edu.tr

İlknur Baytar

Lecturer Dr., Kastamonu University, School of Foreign Languages, iozturk@kastamonu.edu.tr

Caner Çetiner

Asst. Prof. Bandırma Onyedi Eylül University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Department of Translation and Interpreting, ccetiner@bandirma.edu.tr

Fadime Çoban

Ass. Prof. Bartin University, Department of Translation and Interpreting Studies (English), fcoban@bartin.edu.tr

A. Nursen Durdağı

Ass. Prof. Sakarya University, Translation Studies, ndurdagi@sakarya.edu.tr

←9 | 10→Seda Dural

PhD in Translation and Cultural Studies, sedadural1@hotmail.com

Teslime Gökgöl

Lecturer at Konya Technical University, PhD Candidate of Translation and Cultural Studies at Ankara Hacı Bayram Veli University, tgkokgol@ktun.edu.tr

Halise Gülmüş Sırkıntı

PhD Candidate at Yıldız Teknik Üniversitesi. Lecturer at Fatih Sultan Mehmet Vakıf Üniversitesi, hgulmus@fsm.edu.tr

Korkut Uluç İşisağ

Asst. Prof. Ankara Hacı Bayram Veli University, Faculty of Letters, Department of Translation and Interpreting, korkut.isisag@hbv.edu.tr

Sevda Pekçoşkun Güner

Ass. Prof, Kırklareli University, Department of Translation Studies, sevdapekcoskunguner@klu.edu.tr

Pınar Koç

Ass. Prof. Gumushane University, Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences, pinartorun@gumushane.edu.tr

Ayşe Işık Akdağ

Being Strategic in the Translation Process: Metacognitive Skills of Translator Trainees

Abstract: The act of translation is a multi-layered process where high-level (meta)cognitive activities are performed. The translator passes through different metacognitive processes at every stage of the translation. This study focuses on the metacognitive aspect of translation and aims to reveal the metacognitive levels of translator candidates. The development of students’ metacognition is important since metacognition, which is a set of systems that regulates and controls all the cognitive processes, is employed to fulfil different actions in the translation process starting from the receipt of the translation project to its end as a translated text and perhaps beyond. Translator trainees with high levels of metacognition can plan, evaluate and control the translation task by successfully identifying and resolving translation problems. In this study, after discussion of the role of metacognition in the translation, the Metacognition Scale was used to determine metacognition levels in the translator trainees. The correlational survey method was used to determine the relation between variables. The results show that the majority of students have medium level metacognitive skills and there is a significant, linear, similar and weak relationship between last semester average and scale scores. No statistically significant difference was found between gender, working language, class, age and willingness to work as an interpreter.

Keywords: metacognition, metacognitive skills, Translation Studies, translator training, problem solving.

Introduction

The translation process starts before the act of translating has begun. From the moment translators receive a translation project, several (meta)cognitive operations are performed in their mind, including acceptance or rejection of the job. After acceptance, (meta)cognitive processes continue to increase. This is particularly so in the case of interpretation since the interpreter’s cognitive burden becomes more sizable because oral translation requires the effective use of both short-term and long-term memory. Researchers have examined the cognitive processes of the translation act from different points of view, but metacognitive processes have been studied less frequently. This study focuses on ←11 | 12→the metacognitive aspect of the translation and aims to reveal the metacognitive levels of translator candidates. Research questions are as follows:

1What are the metacognitive skills of translation trainees?

2In which metacognitive skills are trainee translators successful?

3Is there a significant relationship between the metacognition levels of the trainee translators and gender?

4Is there a significant relationship between the metacognition levels and the working language of trainee translators?

5Is there a significant relationship between metacognition levels and class?

6Is there a significant relationship between the metacognition levels and the academic achievement of the trainee translators?

7Is there a meaningful difference in the metacognition levels between trainee translators who want to specialize in interpreting and those who want to specialize in written translation?

Before we begin, let us clarify the terms “cognition” and metacognition”. Cognition refers to mental processes, abilities, skills such as memorizing, learning, problem-solving, evaluating, reasoning and decision making. Thanks to cognition, individuals read, perceive or acquire language. Then, comes the metacognitive level in which “individuals monitor their own progress when they are engaged in these first-order tasks” (Kitchner, 1983, p. 225). Cognition helps us to understand and/or learn something. Metacognition, on the other hand, helps us to know how we learn something (Senemoğlu, 2007, p. 336).

Metacognition has been usually referred to as thinking about thinking and may be defined as “the processes that choose and work on cognitive strategies related to learning and remembering1” (Altındağ, 2008). In other words, metacognition manages all cognitive processes until the input is transformed into performance. It is the individual’s awareness of his own metacognitive processes, monitoring and evaluating of his own cognitive processes (Flavell, 1979; Senemoğlu, 2007; Vallotton & Fischer, 2008).

John H Flavell (1979) who coined the term metacognition, divides it as metacognitive knowledge, metacognitive experiences, goals and strategies. Metacognitive knowledge is the “knowledge or beliefs about what factors or variables act and interact in what ways to affect the course and outcome of cognitive enterprises” (p.907). In other words, it is being aware of her/his cognition processes, and metacognitive learning strategies. The student knows what to do with the information and how to make use of strategies to attend the objectives.←12 | 13→

Metacognitive experiences are what one experiences during a cognitive task. They focus on learning goals and metacognitive strategies that control the cognitive processes to achieve a goal. Metacognitive strategies help to plan, supervise and asses the learning (Gourgey, 2001; Livingston, 2003; Schraw, 2013; Schraw & Dennison, 1994).

From the above-mentioned explications, one may infer that concentration, planning, information processing, evaluation and control are used effectively by individuals with high metacognitive levels to achieve a determined goal (Altındağ, 2008; Eggen & Kauchak, 2001; Livingston, 2003; Senemoğlu, 2007). These qualities are also sine quibus non conditions when translating. Apart being a purely linguistic transfer, translation requires the effective use of metacognitive skills. In fact, some researchers pointed out the importance of metacognition in translator training:

Echeverri (2008, pp. 177–179) considers translation as a metacognitive activity and based on Flavell, he exemplifies metacognitive behavior in the translation process: When students say “I found the translation order unclear and it need to be further discussed with the client”, “I know that I translate better in complete silence” or “X is an excellent reviewer, but s/he is less productive when it comes to translating” they use their metacognitive knowledge.

Göpferich (2009b, p. 35) highlights the role of metacognition by quoting from Risku “In the course of their training, the subjects’ meta-linguistic and meta-communicative competence, as well as their meta-cognitive competence, increases (Risku 1998: 163)”.

Examining translation competence from a cognitive perspective, Gonçalves (2003) distinguishes general translator’s competence requiring “the coordination of various cognitive domains” and specific translator’s competence “working mainly through conscious or meta-cognitive processes”. Expert translators have a specific developed competence and they are able to “grade the interpretative from micro-linguistic to meta-contextual resemblance” (Alves & Gonçalves, 2007, p. 58).

Likewise, Shreve (2009, p. 257) points out the importance of metacognition in the translation process both for the expert and novice translators: “Metacognitive activities occur at all developmental levels, but their locations and purposes change as translators develop proficiency”

The TransComp group researchers, who proposed a multidimensional translation competence model, states explicitly that the strategic sub-competence ←13 | 14→is a metacognitive competence: “As a meta-cognitive competence2 it sets priorities and defines hierarchies between the individual sub-competences […]” (Göpferich, 2009b).

Having examined translation competence models of several researchers, Akdağ (2020a, 2020b) agrees with TransComp that strategic competence is composed of skills foreseeing the use of metacognition. The abilities that the strategic competence encompasses i.e. “to evaluate what is already decided, to compensate for shortcomings, to redefine translation objectives and to adopt a new strategy if the current one becomes ineffective, to organize the translation process from the beginning to the end, and to supervise every step” (2020b, p.30) require the effective use of metacognition.

Problem-solving, which plays an important role in the translation process (Angelone, 2010; Göpferich, 2009a; Mellinger, 2019), has also been considered as part of the metacognition. In fact, metacognitive knowledge and metacognitive experiences not only facilitate problem solving but also “helps students to be strategic” in the problem-solving processes (Essletzbichler & Rigby, 2002, p. 25). To put it another way, problem-solving activates metacognitive abilities in academic disciplines (Artzt & Armour-Thomas, 1992; Essletzbichler & Rigby, 2002) as well as in the translation process (Nietfeld & Schraw, 2002; Shreve, 2009). Göpferich (2009b) qualifies the identification of the translation problem by expert translators as a ‘higher metacognitive competence’.

Methodology

In survey method based studies the participants’ opinions about a subject or event or their characteristics such as interest, skill, ability and attitude are determined (Büyüköztürk, Çakmak, Akgün, Karadeniz, & Demirel, 2017, p. 184). In this research, the survey method was used to determine the metacognitive skill levels in Translation Studies students. Specifically, the correlational survey method was used to determine the relation between variables.

Participants

213 translator trainees participated in the research conducted at a state university in the 2018–2019 academic year. Tab. 1 shows the characteristics of participants.

Tab. 1. Demografic information

n

%

Gender

Female

135

63.38

Male

78

36.62

Age

22.61

5.87

Working Language

German

80

37.38

French

55

25.70

English

79

36.92

Class

1st year

71

34.13

2nd year

51

24.52

3rd year

36

17.31

Details

Pages
248
ISBN (PDF)
9783631854402
ISBN (ePUB)
9783631854419
ISBN (MOBI)
9783631854426
ISBN (Hardcover)
9783631850923
Language
English
Publication date
2021 (July)
Tags
Translation translation studies translation teaching translation science translation discipline translation activity translation action
Published
Berlin, Bern, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Warszawa, Wien, 2021. 248 pp., 24 fig. b/w, 27 tables.

Biographical notes

Mehmet Cem Odacioglu (Volume editor)

Mehmet Cem Odacıoğlu currently serves as the chair of Translation Studies at Bartin University in Turkey. His areas of research focus on translation technologies, translation theories, technical translation, and translation education.

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Title: Modern Approaches to Translation and Translation Studies