Translation and Interpreting

Translation and Interpreting

Research on translation and interpreting in the Department of Linguistics at Macquarie University reflects the multidimensionality of translation and interpreting as cognitive activities embedded in complex local and global multilingual settings. Given this multidimensionality, our research is highly interdisciplinary, connecting with linguistics, psychology, cognitive sciences and arts.

Cognitive translation processes create textual translation products that fulfil a range of functions in particular societies. We are interested in the cognitive “black box” of bilingual language processing and decision-making processes involved in producing translations and interpreting output. Our research also considers various aspects of the products and functions of translation and interpreting. We are interested in the linguistic and discourse features of translated and interpreted language, and in the complex ways in which translation and interpreting function in different sociocultural contexts.

Insights into cognitive processing in translation and interpreting, and the roles and functions of translation and interpreting in facilitating intercultural communication in complex local-global settings form the basis of our research on translation pedagogy, expertise and testing.

Areas of interest

Audiovisual translation and accessibility

Much of the work we do on audiovisual translation (AVT) is on the reception of AVT products like subtitles and audio described film. We are interested in the impact AVT products have on the ability of the audience to immerse in fictional realities, on their comprehension of film, and on the cognitive load experienced in the presence of the AVT product. Our research on AVT strongly links up with research on cognitive processing in translation and interpreting reception. We have a particular interest also in the way in which subtitles can be used in education to improve access for all students, but in particular for students whose access is impeded by physical factors (e.g. a loss of hearing or sight), or by linguistic factors (studying through a second language).

Cognitive processing in translation and interpreting production and reception

In our state-of-the-art translation labs, we use eye-tracking, keystroke-logging and EEG to investigate cognitive processing during translation and interpreting production. We also study cognitive processing in reception – we are especially interested in how readers’ reading behaviour and comprehension are affected by different translation strategies, and how subtitled and audiodescribed films are processed by viewers and listeners. Our work in this area is reflected in the affiliation of Professor Jan-Louis Kruger with TREC (Thematic Network on Empirical and Experimental Research in Translation) and APTRAC (Asia-Pacific Translation and Cognition Research Group), of which they are founder members.

Community interpreting

At the interface of sociolinguistics, applied linguistics and interpreting studies, work into the interactional characteristics of interpreter-mediated communication in community settings (health, police, social work) provides insights into the role of interpreters in ensuring effective communication. This work challenges traditional roles of the dialogue interpreter and informs models of practice for interpreter training.

Corpus linguistics and translation

We use electronic corpora and quantitative corpus linguistic methods to analyse the linguistic features that set translated language apart from non-translated language. We try to “fingerprint” what makes translated language different from language that has not been translated, and develop hypotheses about the cognitive and social constraints that give rise to these features. We also use corpus methods to investigate a variety of other research questions in translation, including translation style and ideology in translation.

Discourse and text analysis in translation and interpreting

In this research area, we use linguistic models to investigate how translators/interpreters approach a text and analyse discourse features of the text, based on which they make delicate choices in translation. We are particularly interested in exploring the meaning-making resources that lie behind a source text and how they are realised in a target text. We use corpora to observe the lexicogrammatical profile of certain text types and explore their relationship with translation choices.

Translation and interpreting pedagogy, testing and expertise

Interpreter and translator performance measurement forms the basis of high-stakes certification decisions and as such must demonstrate good validity and reliability. However, the complexity of measurement across many languages and cultures, as is the case with the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI) tests, requires interdisciplinary collaboration that brings together expertise in the psychometric properties of tests and an understanding of translation and interpreting performance. Evaluation is embedded across the curriculum from informal and formal formative classroom assessments to summative assessments of achievement, it is also fundamental to curriculum design and implementation of pedagogical practices.

Translation and language contact

Translation can be seen as a form of language contact, and under certain conditions it can introduce variation in a language – and lead to language change. Using synchronic and diachronic corpora, we investigate what the conditions are under which translation can contribute to language change, and the kind of changes it may lead to.

Our people

Current researchers

Jinhyun Cho
Jing Fang
Della Goswell
Jan-Louis Kruger
Marc Orlando
Yan Qian
Stanley Zhongwei Song

Current PhD students

Ibrahim Alasmri: The features of translated language across register and time: A corpus-based study of translation from English to Arabic

Hayyan Al-Roussan
PhD Thesis Title: Translation of cultural references in the Arabic subtitling of feature films: A parallel corpus-based study
Supervisors: Prof. Jan-Louis Kruger and Dr. Nick Wilson (MQ), Associate Prof. Ashraf Fattah (HBKU, Doha)

Ahmed Alsharif
PhD Thesis Title: The impact of subtitle presentation speed (low vs. high) on L2 incidental vocabulary acquisition by Saudi University students
Supervisor: Prof. Jan-Louis Kruger

Eisa Asiri
PhD Thesis Title: Translation strategies for culture-specific items in the Qur’an: A corpus-based descriptive study
Supervisor:  A/Prof Annabelle Lukin, A/Prof Taibi Mustapha

Ahmad Assiri
PhD Thesis Title: An investigation into conjunctive markers in subtitling between English and Arabic: A corpus-based study
Supervisors: Prof. Jan-Louis Kruger and Dr. Nick Wilson (MQ), and Associate Prof. Ashraf Fattah (HBKU, Doha)

Andrea Wing Chan
PhD Thesis Title: An investigation of subtitles as learning support in university education
Supervisors: Prof. Jan-Louis Kruger and Associate Prof. Stephen Doherty (UNSW)

Eunjin Heo
PhD Thesis Title: Language anxiety and coping strategies among international interpreting students
Supervisors: Dr. Jinhyun Cho and Associate Prof. Peter Roger

Mi Gyeong Kim
MRes Thesis Title: A corpus-based approach to community interpreting
Supervisors: Dr. Adam Smith and Dr. Helen Slatyer

Sixin Liao
PhD Thesis Title: The impact of visual and auditory information on subtitling processing: An eye tracking study
Supervisors: Prof. Jan-Louis Kruger, Prof. Erik Reichle and Dr. Lili Yu

Yousef Sahari
PhD Thesis Title: A corpus-based study of taboo language in Arabic subtitles
Supervisors: Prof. Jan-Louis Kruger and Dr. Nick Wilson (MQ), and Associate Prof. Ashraf Fattah (HBKU, Doha)

Angela Turzynski-Azimi
PhD Thesis Title: The representation of foreigners in Japanese newspaper discourse
Supervisors: Dr. Chavalin Svetanant and Dr. Adam Smith

Mengjia Wu
MRes Thesis Title: Differences in the process and products of translation and post-editing between bilinguals and professional translators: A contrastive study
Supervisors: Dr. Jing Fang and Dr. Xin Wang

Yan Yue
PhD Thesis Title: Translation of vagueness in traditional Chinese medicine classic Huang Di Nei Jing: A comparative study from Systemic Functional Perspective
Supervisors: Dr. Wu Canzhong and Dr. Zhongwei Song

WeiWei Zhang
PhD Thesis Title: Coherence building in consecutive interpreting: A mixed-method research on interpreters’ notes
Supervisors: Dr. Song Zhongwei and Dr. Wu Canzhong

Xiaomin Zhang
PhD Thesis Title: Investigating explicitation in children’s literature translated between English and Chinese
Supervisors: Dr. Jing Fang and Prof. Haidee Kotze

Contact us

Dr Jinhyun Cho

Content owner: Department of Linguistics Last updated: 15 Dec 2020 10:45am

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