SENSE is grateful to our 2018 Conference sponsors

PerfectIt

Sunday, 10 June

12:15–13:15, PLENARY TALK

Sarah Griffin-Mason, Trends in translating and interpreting to 2050

Translation/General

Editing, translating and interpreting are professions on the move as the dual challenges of globalization and mechanization extend ever deeper into the language service sector.

I will present messages on key issues likely to affect practitioners in their professional lives in the coming generation on the basis of information gleaned from the International Federation of Translation* (FIT-IFT) conference held in Brisbane, Australia in early August 2017.

The aim is to encourage debate on key current issues such as artificial intelligence, the visibility and value of language service providers, the shortcomings of the gig economy, and the absence of right to title. An understanding of these issues and how they might develop over the coming years will empower practitioners to prepare for the forthcoming disruption, to adapt appropriately to the challenges, and to resist the more pernicious potential impacts of changing professional practices.

* FIT is an international grouping of associations of translators, interpreters and terminologists with more than 100 affiliated professional associations and training institutes, representing more than 80,000 translators in 55 countries. The international triennial conference therefore provides a broad and in-depth overview of the language service sector worldwide.

 


About the presenter

Sarah Griffin Mason

Sarah Griffin-Mason is the current chair of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting and senior lecturer in Translation Studies at the University of Portsmouth, where she mostly teaches Spanish-to-English specialised translation and professional aspects of translation. She trained as a translator and editor in the InterPress Service in Montevideo, Uruguay in the 1990s and also runs a business as a freelance translator and editor for clients. These include NGOs and international entities such as UNICEF-TACRO, Plan International and the European Training Foundation.


Sunday, 10 June

11:20–12:00, PRESENTATION SESSIONS 5

11:20–12:00

Jackie Senior, Joy Burrough, Carol Norris, Nigel Harwood, Panel discussion: Putting the Dutch practice on editing texts for doctoral theses/dissertations into an international context

Editing

For the four panellists involved in the editing (or proofreading) of student writing in one way or another – two from the Netherlands, one from Finland and another from the UK – SENSE Conference 2018 presents a unique opportunity to share and compare their approaches to the correction of student work in their respective countries and contexts. What promises to be a lively and wide-ranging exchange of experiences, approaches and views should give conference delegates a good idea of how academic editing in the Netherlands stands internationally, and perhaps some food for thought for their own professional practice. Questions and shared experiences from the floor will be welcome too!

 


About the panel

JackieSeniorJackie Senior works as an editor and webmaster for an ambitious international research department (Dept of Genetics, University of Groningen/UMCG). Nowadays she works mostly on biomedical texts but she started as a geologist at Shell, later working as an editor for Shell Research and an international investment bank. She has been editing and translating for more than 40 years but, with the Dutch retirement age becoming a moveable feast, is exploring options for later. She was a founder member of SENSE in 1990, has served twice on its executive committee, and was appointed an honorary member in 2010.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Joy BurroughBased in the Netherlands but having edited and researched in various countries, Joy Burrough-Boenisch edits and translates for Dutch academics and scientists, teaches scientific and academic English, and gives workshops for translators and editors. She is a founder and honorary member of SENSE. She has two degrees in geography and a doctorate (on Dutch-scientific English). Her academic and professional publications include Righting English that’s gone Dutch (Kemper Conseil, 2013) and contributions to the book Supporting Research Writing: Roles and challenges in multilingual settings, (Chandos, 2013), edited by Valerie Matarese.





 

 

Carol NorisAfter completing a Bachelor's degree in pre-medicine at Duke University but lacking funding for medical school, Carol Norris conducted research at Duke and Oak Ridge National Laboratory before undertaking an MA in rhetoric and then teaching university writing courses for seven years. Her PhD thesis at the University of Maryland concerned the physician in literature. Carol also holds an Applied Linguistics MA from Birmingham University, UK.

In 1985 she began the University of Helsinki’s first English-language writing course for scientists and became a university medical author-editor. In addition, she writes for the European Science Editors’ European Science Editing and presents at conferences. She is a member of Nordic Editors and Translators (NEaT).

 

 





 

Nigel HarwoodNigel Harwood is a reader in Applied Linguistics at the University of Sheffield. He has previously published three co-authored journal articles reporting findings of an interview-based study of the profiles, practices and beliefs of proofreaders who work on student writing in the United Kingdom. He has also published research on English for academic purposes and teachers’ use of EFL and EAP textbooks; his most recent monograph focuses on students' experiences of dissertation supervision. He is co-editor of the journal English for Specific Purposes (Elsevier).

Sunday, 10 June

11:20–12:00, PRESENTATION SESSIONS 5

11:20–12:00

Maria Sherwood-Smith, Outreach and research communication in English: Opportunities for language professionals

English/Writing/Editing

Certain trends in the research climate in the Netherlands – especially the growing emphasis on the societal relevance of research and the tendency towards large, multidisciplinary projects – open up opportunities for those language professionals who support researchers. Researchers increasingly need to communicate about their research with non-specialists, whether the general public or their project partners from other disciplines. The majority of this communication occurs through English. For English-language professionals, these trends are reflected in a wider range of research-related text types for translation or editing. The texts serve different communicative purposes and span a variety of registers, ranging from informal written texts such as blogs or tweets and texts for oral production (TED-talks, presentations) to more formal texts such as funding applications. In addition, language professionals are needed to teach researchers the skills they need for research communication in English.

In my presentation, I will discuss how the developments outlined above affect the language support and courses I provide at the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences in Leiden. We will look at examples of the different types of texts I translate and edit for researchers. On the teaching side, I will discuss the Research Master’s course on ‘Presenting Your Research’ that I teach together with lecturers in Psychology, and how we have adapted this course to focus more on presenting to a broader audience. The central objective is to draw attention to the trends identified and to explore some of the opportunities they open up.

My presentation should be of interest to all language professionals who provide language support to researchers, whether as editors, translators, or teachers of academic or scientific English.

 


About the presenter

Maria SherwoodMaria Sherwood-Smith is a lecturer in Academic English in the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences in Leiden. She holds a BA in French and German from Trinity College Dublin, and a DPhil. in Medieval Languages from the University of Oxford. Her research focused on vernacular authors’ use of a Latin source text. After temporary lectureships at the universities of Manchester and Oxford, she moved to the Netherlands in 1999. Since 2003, Maria has been employed as a translator for the Dutch police. She also works as a freelance translator and language editor, mainly for academic publications.


Sunday, 10 June

11:20–12:00, PRESENTATION SESSIONS 5

11:20–12:00

John Linnegar, Garnering those usage and style gremlins: Revealing the contemporary even-handedness of GMEU

English/Writing

Language practitioners nowadays have to grapple with many English grammar, usage and style issues when improving texts, and cannot do so authoritatively with at least one vademecum to hand. But which authorities to consult? Most of the available references are either outdated and a bit stuffy (eg Fowler’s MEU, Partridge, Treble & Vallins) or biased in favour of either AmE or BrE (New Hart’s Rules, Chicago Manual of Style). Yet others are avowedly either prescriptivist or descriptivist. So if one needs information on either or both Englishes, accessing it can be a problem.

In this respect, Bryan Garner’s magnum opus – Garner’s Modern English Usage (GMEU, Oxford University Press, 2016) – is an answer to many practitioners’ prayers, for four main reasons: first, the text and content are based on an analysis of a massive corpus that determines many of Garner’s observations and recommendations on contemporary usage; second, while he tends to favour a descriptivist approach to usage, he does not shy away from sound prescriptivist conventions when necessary, even if only to present a balanced view on the status quo (which sometimes goes about the difference between AmE’s conservatism versus BrE’s more ‘liberal’ approach); third, he presents what is currently the most balanced account of both AmE and BrE usage. (Remember GB Shaw’s witty ‘England and America are two countries separated by the same language’? Garner shows us how in some respects it is the case, in others it ain’t.) Finally, and perhaps most importantly for us 21st-century mortals, the text is written in the plainest, most accessible English (unlike many of the guides of the last century).

Being a recent addition to the literature (June 2016), GMEU is relatively unknown among, let alone used by, practitioners who have to grapple with contemporary English usage – whether AmE or BrE – and make decisions about which is appropriate. This session attempts to reveal (almost) all.

 


About the presenter

John Linnegar 2Until 2010, like many other editors, John Linnegar had little idea of how to distinguish between the nuanced three levels of editing (and that after 30 years in the game!). Then he began researching the subject, only to find that less than a handful of authors had written about it! It’s their ideas — plus his own guide on how possibly to quantify the levels in specific editing tasks — that he will be sharing and workshopping, using a set of real texts.

John has been a text editor, proofreader and indexer of school and academic textbooks, reports and journal articles since the 1970s. For almost 20 years he has trained generations of editors, proofreaders and indexers. During this time he has published several books on aspects of language usage and editing, including Engleish, our Engleish: Common errors in South African English and how to resolve them (NB Publishers, 2009) and Text Editing: A handbook for students and practitioners (UPA, Brussels, 2012). Now based in Antwerp, Belgium, he is a member of a number of professional associations, including SENSE, MET and Australian and South African societies and a regular presenter at conferences. His postgraduate research is on the mentoring of language practitioners online.


Sunday, 10 June

09:30–10:30, PRESENTATION SESSIONS 4

10:00–10:30

Joy Burrough, Editing English-language doctoral theses in the Netherlands: Are the SENSE Guidelines useful?

Editing

Now that most Master’s and PhD candidates in the Netherlands write their thesis or dissertation in English, there is much demand for these texts to be corrected. The many suppliers responding to this demand range from ‘convenience editors’, through online agencies, to experienced professional editors. What they amend and how they do so vary. Can SENSE’s Guidelines for Proofreading Student Texts clarify what thesis editing entails and reduce the variation in the nature and manner of language professionals’ interventions in such texts? I will address this question, considering doctoral (i.e. PhD-equivalent) theses only.

First, I will explain why variation in editorial interventions is unavoidable, pointing out that it depends partly on the parameters of the assignment and partly on the language professional’s personal skills, knowledge, background, circumstances, and attitude towards the ethics of editing theses. Expanding on the issue of ethics, I will argue that although concern about the ethics of editing student work drove the creation of SENSE’s Guidelines for Proofreading Student Texts, in the Netherlands this concern is not as important as it is in countries such as the UK and Australia. I will suggest reasons for this. I will then explain why the Guidelines specifically exclude the Dutch-style article-based doctoral theses that predominate in the sciences.

After discussing the editorial and ethical challenges these compilation theses raise, I will suggest how articles destined for journal publication and thesis inclusion should be edited and how ethical predicaments might be resolved. Aspects of the SENSE Guidelines turn out to be useful for this, after all.

Although the presentation focuses on doctoral theses – specifically, compilation theses – the issues addressed are relevant to all aspiring and practising editors working for clients in academia and science, and to language professionals interested in the ethics of editing.

 


About the presenter

Joy BurroughBased in the Netherlands but having edited and researched in various countries, Joy Burrough-Boenisch edits and translates for Dutch academics and scientists, teaches scientific and academic English, and gives workshops for translators and editors. She is a founder and honorary member of SENSE. She has two degrees in geography and a doctorate (on Dutch-scientific English). Her academic and professional publications include Righting English that’s gone Dutch (Kemper Conseil, 2013) and contributions to the book Supporting Research Writing: Roles and challenges in multilingual settings, (Chandos, 2013), edited by Valerie Matarese.


Sunday, 10 June

09:30–10:30, PRESENTATION SESSIONS 4

09:30–10:00

Jackie Senior, International science needs English editors

Editing

At the 2017 SENSE Professional Development Day, someone stated that science papers are still written in the passive voice. Time for an update! Science is now big business, performed by international collaborations communicating in English, and it forms a major ‘export’ product of the Dutch knowledge-based economy. At the same time, publications have become the measure of a scientist’s career, which puts many excellent non-native-English-speaking researchers at a disadvantage. The result is a real need for English editorial services.

In addition to research papers, science editors may also work on grant applications, press releases, and presentations to lay people (eg patient groups, journalists, or investors).

International researchers may not have had training in how to write in English nor in the formal style required by academic journals. The choice of active versus passive voice is just one example of how editors can guide authors towards a more readable text. Whereas the passive was once considered to convey an authoritative style, the active voice is now encouraged by most journals because it identifies the actor and lends itself to shorter, more direct sentences. It is one element to foster writing that can convey complex messages in straightforward English to a readership with a wide range of language proficiency. I will discuss how scientific publishing has changed and how editors can help scientists write clearly for an international readership.

I will give examples of what editors can do, including helping writers clarify their language and ideas, recognising when more information is needed, and considering the target audience and their background.

While academic publishers point struggling authors to commercial editing services, my experience of working with a top research group shows that an editor with good subject knowledge and direct access to authors offers an added value that an unknown third party cannot easily match. If you have a scientific/technical background, or an interest in certain fields, you too can become a language professional with a specialty, and you can certainly build up a worthwhile freelance career.

 


About the presenter

JackieSeniorJackie Senior works as an editor and webmaster for an ambitious international research department (Dept of Genetics, University of Groningen/UMCG). Nowadays she works mostly on biomedical texts but she started as a geologist at Shell, later working as an editor for Shell Research and an international investment bank. She has been editing and translating for more than 40 years but, with the Dutch retirement age becoming a moveable feast, is exploring options for later. She was a founder member of SENSE in 1990, has served twice on its executive committee, and was appointed an honorary member in 2010.

Sunday, 10 June

09:30–10:30, PRESENTATION SESSIONS 4

09:30–10:30

Tony Parr & Marcel Lemmens, Identifying and rectifying translatorese (workshop-style)

Translation

Wikipedia defines translatorese as ‘Stilted or unidiomatic language produced by automated translation’. And it is labelled as ‘pejorative’. Well, yes, of course. But we believe translatorese is not restricted to automatically produced translations. Human translators may produce wooden and unnatural translations too. The question is: What makes a translation stilted, wooden, unnatural, or unidiomatic? How can you recognise translatorese in human translations? And how should you deal with it?

In this workshop-style presentation we will present the findings from a one-day course in ‘repairing translatorese’ that we organized in 2017. We will focus on what a group of professional Dutch into English and English into Dutch translators consider stilted or unidiomatic language and will discuss our analysis of how they repair it. Do they practise what they preach? Do they intervene too much or too little? Is it possible to reach consensus on what is and is not translatorese?

The goal of this presentation is to raise awareness of translatorese and the consequences of literal translation on readability, and to trigger a discussion about the scope of a revisor’s job.

‘In the final analysis, give preference to the reader’s needs over the client’s demands’ (Brian Mossop).

 


About the presenters

Tony ParrTony Parr (top) and Marcel Lemmens (bottom) are professional business translators and translator trainers. Both have extensive experience as translators (both freelance and in-house) and as teachers of translation, principally at the National College of Translation in Maastricht. They are the authors of Handboek voor de Vertaler Nederlands–Engels. Operating under the name of Teamwork, they have been organising courses, workshops and conferences for language professionals in the Netherlands since 1993.


 

 

 

Marcel Lemmens

Sunday, 10 June

09:30–10:30, PRESENTATION SESSIONS 4

09:30–10:30

Tom Johnston, Mid-Atlantic English: Which mid-Atlantic English?

English

When it comes to spelling, diction and punctuation, Dutch people writing in English tend to be consistently inconsistent in their mixture of British and North American conventions. The same could be said – though obviously to a lesser extent – for younger Brits. As English continues to evolve in different directions within the English-speaking world, the rest of the world could benefit from a set of guidelines that focus on the current common ground between the two ‘supervarieties’ of English.

This presentation discusses the concept of ‘Mid-Atlantic’ English (a term resurrected here for writing rather than pronunciation) as a reasonably sophisticated, hybrid form of English for use in relatively formal, international contexts. I will focus on the type of written language used in business/finance, science and international development organizations, as so many of our clients tend to be operating in those fields. I will certainly refer to the ‘international English selections’ that Pam Peters has put forward in The Cambridge Guide to English Usage (2012), but my talk will go beyond spelling and diction to consider punctuation and even certain grammatical forms that are commonly held to be typical of either UK or US English.

Establishing the common ground is easy enough. Choosing from among the different options where the two varieties diverge is more difficult. The character of one client organization and that of its audience may call for a style sheet with a slightly different ‘Mid-Atlantic’ selection of words and conventions than one developed for another type of client. Multiple bespoke ‘Englishes’ could result, none of which are strictly UK or strictly US, but all of which are practical solutions for carefully formulated texts written by well-educated non-native speakers.

This presentation will discuss how to make such a selection: how to create an effective Mid-Atlantic English. It is intended primarily for translators, editors and copywriters who produce English texts for companies and organizations based in non-English-speaking countries.

 


About the presenter

Tom JohnstonBorn and raised in the United States, Tom Johnston has called Amsterdam home since 1985. In need of a job after getting his PhD in Old Frisian Philology in 1998, he began as an English editor and Dutch-to-English translator at Dutch consulting firm Berenschot. Since 2001 he has been giving workshops on writing effectively in English — initially as an offshoot of his editing practice — to professionals from all over the world (primarily in the fields of science, business/finance and international development). Besides running Johnston Text & Training (founded in 2003), he also teaches 3rd-year Bachelor’s students of Translation at ITV Hogeschool (since 2015).


Saturday, 9 June

17:15–18:30, PRESENTATION SESSIONS 3

18:00–18:30

Kenneth Quek, Chinglish as she is writ: On the uses and abuses of English by native Chinese speakers

English/Editing

This presentation covers some of the specific issues involved in editing English-language texts produced by native speakers of Chinese and provides suggestions on how to handle them. Chinese speakers are growing increasingly important in academia and business, and it is crucial for them to communicate fluently and precisely in English. Unfortunately, having Chinese as a native language often interferes with English usage, as Chinese syntax and idiom is so different from that of English. Thus there is a strong market for providing editing and copywriting services to Chinese speakers, which participants may become better able to tap with skills specific to them – especially so when the Chinese market is still strongly driven by word of mouth, with most clients relying on recommendations through their networks to select service providers.

In this presentation I shall introduce some of the common mistakes made by Chinese speakers, especially those that are more challenging to correct, and suggest strategies for dealing with them. Many of these mistakes are particularly difficult to handle because they can distort the meaning of the text or even render it unintelligible to those unfamiliar with Chinese syntax. But the knowledge I hope to share will help participants to revise texts from such sources more efficiently while still capturing the essence of what the authors are attempting to communicate.

By the end of the presentation, participants will have a clear idea of some aspects of the Chinese language and how they can affect the English usage of native Chinese speakers. They will also have learned effective strategies for handling these issues, which may also be transferable to editing texts from speakers of other non-English languages.

This presentation will be of interest to any language professional who may find themselves handling texts produced by native Chinese speakers, or who may wish to break into this large and growing market.

 


About the presenter

Kenneth QuekKenneth Quek is a Singaporean who resides in Helsinki. He is fully bilingual in English and Mandarin Chinese and works both as a freelance academic revisor for the University of Helsinki Language Centre and as a freelance editor and copywriter in the corporate sector. He has previous experience in private teaching, translation and journalism.


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