It has been a while since this newsletter last mentioned our training programme, but don’t despair: this project is still going ahead. Although it may not look like it from your end, we have made a lot of progress (‘a lot of work has been going on behind the scenes’ as my former manager would say).

Image of a light bulb with the text: I learn, what's your superpower?We have tested different Learning Management Systems, including iLearn (the Department’s LMS for employees’ professional development), the LMS of the Ministry of Education, and Edmodo which creates an online classroom with a very Facebook-inspired design. The one that seems the most appropriate is the Ministry of Education’s system. In due course, you will each receive login details to access e-learning modules that will have been assigned to you. You will also be able to sign up for modules that you would like to take.

For now, there are three streams of e-learning: Translator, Reviser, and Assessor. They complement each other, and you would be expected to complete the Translator stream before starting any module of the Reviser stream. This being said, we will adapt the e-learning programme to your needs and your objectives. If you know how to use track changes in Word, there is no point in assigning this module to you. There is also no point in assigning you Reviser training if you don’t wish to carry out revision work.

You will receive a certificate on completion of an e-learning stream. Our hope is that you will be in a better position to perform well. This in turn will be reflected in the fees that we will pay you. As a matter of fact, we are reviewing our payment structure, and an emphasis will be put on quality.

We are currently developing the e-learning material using a programme called Articulate – and I must say that I’m very excited about the possibilities it offers! Here is a list of the modules that are planned so far:

  • Welcome to the Translation Service: this module will allow you to meet the team, find out who we are and learn about our expectations;
  • What is a good translation?: this module will set out translation principles that should be followed when translating for TTS. There will be some theoretical background but not too much! It will primarily make use of examples and give some advice and a few translation strategies;
  • The Art of Selective Translations: this module will take you through the selective translation process step-by-step, and will put an emphasis on practice;
  • The Art of Full Translations: this module will explain the full translation process and draw upon some fundamental translation principles. Formatting issues and other TTS standard practices will be addressed as well;
  • Basics of Word Processing: this module will help you make the most of word processing software;
  • The Art of Revision: this module will take you through the revision process and explain exactly what is expected from you;
  • Getting to Grips with Track Changes and Comments: the title is transparent. This module will take you through the track changes and commenting functions of word processing software;
  • The Art of Test Translation Assessment: this module will help you understand what is expected from you when assessing a test translation. It will take you through our quality assessment metric and provide some practice opportunities.

This is a work-in-progress, so any feedback is welcomed. Would you like to add anything to this list? If so, let me know.

S.G.