Faculty Publications

Oral Translation: An Old Horse for the New Frontier


ERIC Document - ED196285 found in the ERIC Database

Document Type



Class Activities; College Second Language Programs; Course Descriptions; Higher Education; Interpreters; Language Skills; Second Language Instruction; Secondary Education; Skill Development; Speech Communication; Student Participation; Translation


The oral translation courses at the University of Northern Iowa are described and suggestions are given for applying the approach to other university language courses and to secondary school language courses. After the initial organizational periods; each eighty-minute class period consists of translating an interview that was recorded in the previous class period; translating an interview the class is hearing for the first time; and holding a discussion. Translation from English into the foreign language is emphasized in this course. The approach to the course is a holistic one; involving student participation at all stages. Cooperative learning is a priority; therefore; students work in teams. Testing involves both written recall of vocabulary items and recorded presentations. Through this course; students get the benefits of conversation-composition courses and they become sensitive to linguistically related cultural differences. It is suggested that such a course might replace conversation; composition; and some culture courses. The oral-translation course might be adapted for a mini-course on the secondary level for advanced students. (AMH)


Department of Modern Languages

Original Publication Date


Object Description

1 PDF file (10 pages)


UNI ScholarWorks, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa


©1980 D. C. Hawley and Michael D. Oates



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