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Translation and Meaning

New Series, Vol. 1


Edited By Barbara Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk, Marcel Thelen, Gys-Walt van Egdom, Dirk Verbeeck and Łukasz Bogucki

This book contains a selection of articles on new developments in translation and interpreting studies. It offers a wealth of new and innovative approaches to the didactics of translation and interpreting that may well change the way in which translators and interpreters are trained. They include such issues of current debate as assessment methods and criteria, assessment of competences, graduate employability, placements, skills labs, the perceived skills gap between training and profession, the teaching of terminology, and curriculum design. The authors are experts in their fields from renowned universities in Europe, Africa and North-America. The book will be an indispensable help for trainers and researchers, but may also be of interest to translators and interpreters.
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Negotiating Meaning at a Distance: Peer Feedback in Electronic Learning Translation Environments


Abstract: Recent research has contributed to an understanding of the positive impact that peer feedback has on student learning, but there is a lack of experimental studies that focus on how peer feedback affects student translation competence. Our study investigates whether the latter are enhanced in the Trans-Atlantic & Pacific Project (TAPP) with an experiment that included the explicit practice of student peer feedback competence and the negotiation of meaning among peers. Students – whether writing, translating or usability testing – collaborated online both within their own university peer group and with a partner university. The results of this intervention, however, suggest no clear tendencies or relation between peer feedback and meaning-related translation competence.

Keywords: peer feedback, negotiation of meaning, online collaborative learning, translation training, translation competence, formal linguistic evaluation items, meaning-related evaluation items, score development, translation problem, experimental design.

1. Peer Feedback: Theoretical Rationale

In modern education, peer feedback has been increasingly employed as a learning, instructional and assessment strategy. The notion of peers evaluating each other’s work actually goes back to several theoretical schools of thought, in particular, Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development theory (1978) and his sociocultural theory (1986), which claim that individuals usually learn in the company of other people and that learning, therefore, ‘presupposes a specific social nature’ (1978, 34).

There are several reasons for the recent increase in interest in peer feedback. First, it has been claimed that peer-to-peer interaction facilitates the construction of knowledge, enhances...

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