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Lecture | Discussion

Applied Linguistics and AI Discussion Series: "Using machine translation for language learning in the classroom"

Wednesday 31 May 2023
Leiden Translation Talks

Welcome to the first installment of the Applied Linguistics and AI Discussion Series by Leiden University in collaboration with the Language Learning Resource Centre, Leiden Translation Talks and SAILS Initiative!

This session is titled "Using machine translation for language learning in the classroom" and will be moderated by Dr. Lettie Dorst. The panelists are Ana Niño (University of Manchester) and Rudy Loock (University of Lille).

Our panelists' abstracts

Ana Niño:
Free Online Machine Translation (FOMT) vs. ChatGPT: what opportunities and challenges do these AI tools bring to the language teaching and learning context?
This presentation starts with the realization of how AI tools such as FOMT and ChatGPT have revolutionized language learning and teaching from learning design to language practice, without forgetting assessment and feedback. Bearing in mind the principles for CALL evaluation (Chapelle, 2001*), it will contrast FOMT against generative AI tools such as ChatGPT as potential CALL tools, drawing on the benefits they offer and their current limitations. Ultimately, some pedagogical suggestions for the use of these tools in the language class will be outlined, together with future directions to get adapted and embrace these omnipresent technologies.

Rudy Loock:
Online translators in the classroom: how to empower language learners?
This presentation discusses the use of online translators (Google Translate, DeepL) by language students and explores how to help them develop their “machine translation literacy”, a concept defined by Bowker and Buitrago Ciro (2019), with an emphasis on the importance of critical thinking when using such technology. Drawing on experiments conducted with applied language students from 2020 onwards, practical suggestions will be made on the kind of training required to help students achieve such a goal.

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