Didactic Audiovisual Translation in Teacher Training
Keywords:Didactic AVT, dubbing, audio description, TRADILEX, teacher training
Over the last two decades, the active engagement of learners through didactic Audiovisual Translation (AVT) in Foreign Language Learning (FLL) has been receiving increasing attention from both scholars and teachers. Most AVT modes — subtitling, dubbing, audio description (AD), subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing (SDH) and voice-over — can be employed as didactic resources in FLL and guidelines are available for practitioners (Talaván, 2013, 2020). Empirical research has focused on the benefits of didactic AVT on individual and integrated language skills both in face-to-face and online contexts, English being the main language involved in the pedagogical tasks of most experimental studies (Lertola, 2019).
Recently, a related long-term project, TRADILEX (Audiovisual Translation as a Didactic Resource in Foreign Language Education), led by the TRADIT research group at the UNED, has been funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation. The main aim of TRADILEX is to evaluate the degree of FLL improvement in terms of communicative and mediation language skills thanks to the use of didactic AVT tasks. With this purpose, a carefully designed methodological proposal, which includes lesson plans on diverse AVT modes (i.e. subtitling, voice-over, dubbing, AD and SDH), is being piloted with B1 and B2 level English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learners in non-formal educational contexts, in university language centers all over Spain.
Teachers play a key role in TRADILEX as they are specifically-trained facilitators of the learning process. Many teachers believe that AVT tasks could be integrated in the foreign language curriculum if proper teacher training is provided (Alonso-Pérez and Sánchez-Requena, 2018). However, it should be noted that teacher training has been largely neglected in the literature (Lertola, forthcoming). Within this context, this paper will present an online teacher training experience on didactic AVT carried out as a pilot study of TRADILEX, involving 12 FL secondary-school in-training teachers at a higher institution in Switzerland. The one-day teacher training was aimed at introducing future teachers to the pedagogical use of AVT tasks by presenting and working with both a dubbing and an AD lesson plan targeted for EFL B1 and B2 level respectively. The paper will analyse and discuss the data gathered through a feedback questionnaire completed by the participants, the assessment of their AVT tasks, and structured as well as non-structured observations. Observations were collected through two ad hoc observation rubrics (one per lesson plan) filled in by the one teacher-researcher and their lecturer as only-observing teacher, as well as from a group interview and personal notes on the experience shared by the subjects taking the course. The results of this small-scale study are encouraging and call for further in-depth analysis of the role of the didactic AVT in teacher training, both for practitioners interested in using it with their students and for FL teacher training courses in general.
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