Workshop Series - English-Chinese Parallel

Topic 1: English-Chinese Parallel Corpus for Language Studies

To provide opportunities for teachers to explore new ways of English language teaching and support them to adopt corpus-based approach in their teaching, a Knowledge Transfer (KT) Workshop Series was launched. The Series consisted of language skills covering lexis, grammar, phonology, and translation. The Series also aims at equipping teachers with skills and tools to develop their own corpus-based teaching and learning materials.

DATE: 10-Nov- 2017 (Fri)

TIME: 15:30 - 17:30 pm

VENUE: D4-G/F-05A, Tai Po Campus, The Education University of Hong

Abstract

In this workshop, an English-Chinese parallel corpus developed at the EdUHK will be introduced to help teachers and students to understand the value of parallel texts in language teaching and learning. The workshop will demonstrate how learning materials can be developed based on the parallel corpus data to help language learners to compare the English and Chinese language systems, and gain a better understanding of the two languages through comparative language studies.

Summary

Parallel concordancing allows us to place side by side for comparison two contexts produced for a given item - phrase, word, or morpheme - one being a translation of the other. It has many uses in translation studies and in translation pedagogy, such as in the compilation of bilingual dictionaries. Yet large-scale English-Chinese corpus remains unknown to the majority of the teaching community. In this workshop, Dr. Wang Lixun drew the attention of participants specifically to his self-developed English-Chinese Parallel Corpus (http://corpus.eduhk.hk/paraconc/) and explained how this parallel concordancing in English and Chinese contributes to the success of a language teaching class.

Dr. Wang explained the concept of ‘English-Chinese Parallel Corpus’ and how to use parallel concordancing in language teaching, specifically in its use as a form of making learners aware of the differences between English and Chinese. He addressed the basic skills for using the parallel corpus and introduced parallel corpus-based English-Chinese comparative searches at three levels:

  • At the lexical level
  • At the syntactical level
  • At the discourse level

He explained the lexical level with ample and vivid examples, such as ‘Good vs. 好’, ‘Now vs. 现在’. For the syntactic level, he provided a vivid explanation by sharing his previous students' research on the differences in marking the passive voice in English and Chinese using the parallel corpus, along with student’s reflections on the corpus-based work. He shared other students' research on the differences in Information structure between English and Chinese.

Dr. Wang further elaborated the pedagogical Applications of the English-Chinese Parallel Corpus for:

1. Raising language awareness (Data-driven learning)
2. Overcoming cultural difference
3. Using translation studies
4. Benefiting teachers with limited command of the L2
5. Facilitating self-study of a foreign language
6. Easily creating teaching materials

Also, he explained and demonstrated how learning materials can be developed based on the parallel corpus data to help language learners compare the English and Chinese language systems. At the end, participants were given direct experience of the parallel corpus by a series of connected tutorial tasks.


Topic 2: English-Chinese Parallel Corpus for Language Studies

DATE: 27-Mar-2018 (Tue)

TIME: 14:30-16:30 pm

VENUE: The Houde Academy (厚德書院), 9 Guansheng 5th Road, Long Hua District, Shenzhen (zip code: 518110)

Abstract

Traditionally, in English language lessons in China, only English texts are used, and materials based on English-Chinese parallel texts are largely ignored. In this workshop, an English-Chinese parallel corpus developed at the Education University of Hong Kong (EdUHK) will be introduced to help teachers and students to understand the value of parallel texts in language teaching and learning. The workshop will demonstrate how learning materials can be developed based on the parallel corpus data to help language learners to compare the English and Chinese language systems, and gain a better understanding of the two languages through comparative language studies.

Biography

Dr. Wang Lixun is Associate Professor in the Department of Linguistics and Modern Language Studies at the Education University of Hong Kong. His main research interests include corpus linguistics, English for Academic Purposes, Computer-assisted Language Learning (CALL), and multilingual education. He is the author of ‘Introduction to Language Studies’ (2011), ‘Trilingual Education in Hong Kong Primary Schools’ (2018), and co-author of ‘Academic Writing in Language and Education Programmes’ (2011).