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Training Legal Translators in Response to the new Directive 15 March 2012 TRAFUT – Training for the Future Madrid Workshop Liisa Laakso-Tammisto University.

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Presentation on theme: "Training Legal Translators in Response to the new Directive 15 March 2012 TRAFUT – Training for the Future Madrid Workshop Liisa Laakso-Tammisto University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Training Legal Translators in Response to the new Directive 15 March 2012 TRAFUT – Training for the Future Madrid Workshop Liisa Laakso-Tammisto University of Helsinki, Finland

2 Contents Finnish legislation on legal translation Universities in Finland and teaching of translation Inventive teaching as of 2012 –case Helsinki University course: Principles of Authorised Translation

3 Finnish legislation on legal translation Act on Sworn Translators 1967 Laki valantehneistä kääntäjistä Act on Licensed Translators 1989 Laki virallisista kääntäjistä Act on Authorised Translators 2008 Laki auktorisoiduista kääntäjistä 1231/07

4 Authorisation of translators A person of age, known to be reliable who is 1) not declared incompetent 2) domiciled in the EU or in the EEA 3) has passed the particular examination IMPORTANT EXCEPTION TO SUBSECTION 3: Graduates with 60 credits in translation studies

5 Public examination of authorised translators Government Decree on authorised translators, Section 5 –http://www.finlex.fi/fi/laki/ajantasa/2007/ Language and translation skills tested –Translation skills: two exams Law and administration Specialisation: business, technology, medicine –Professional capacities to act as an authorised translator

6 Professional capacities? Ethical principles Professional operations Role of translator (legal, economic aspects) Types of documents and legislation Instructions for authorised translators All steps of the translation process Continuous development

7 Exception to Section 3 of Act MA or other second-cycle degree with at least 60 credits (ECTS) in translation studies Close to graduation At least 6 credits of theoretical and practical studies in authorised translation Application Only towards mother tongue (A language)

8 University-level translation studies Swedish + Nordic, English, German + Germanic, French, Spanish + Portuguese, Italian, Russian + Slavic, Baltic, Japanese…. Degree programmes have always included courses in legal translation, official document translation etc. Helsinki Turku Tampere Eastern Finland Vaasa University of Lapland: Legal Linguistics

9 First-cycle university studies in other HEIs, other levels No programmes in legal translation Community interpreter programme in University of Applied Sciences: –sign language the oldest degree programme –now also Arabic, Kurdish (Soranî), Persian, Somali, Vietnamese –next year Thai, Chinese (Mandarin), Turkish and Arabic Competence-based qualifications in community interpreting –these curricula include extensive legal materials, visits to courts, the police etc.

10 Contents of course: Professional skills part Ethics: bias, secrecy, confidentiality, professionalism, copyright, legal responsibilities and liabilities Formal questions: mistakes/authenticity of originals, names of institutions/places/persons, titles, numerals Classification of documents Apostille + Convention of the Hague Writs, sentences, police documentation + titles Emphasis on legal entities Contracts and pricing issues Law of torts and third party liability Translation service standards Legislation and SKTL instructions

11 Contents of course: Professional skills part/English Real-life documents only From teachers own professional activity –sanitized to teach confidentiality Documents both ways –reality of the Finnish translation market Examples

12 Innovative Programme Universities open the authorised translator course to active professionals translators, members of the Finnish Association of Translators and Interpreters SKTL Excellent collaboration: larger lecture halls, active communication Very positive feedback from Universities Turku, Tampere and Helsinki in spring term 2012 Vaasa and Eastern Finland during academic year

13 Case: Helsinki University 1st course / professional skills: 33 students English, Nordic, Italian, Russian, French about 20 professional translators English, Nordic, Italian, Russian, French…

14 Experience in 2012 Students seem very happy to have a close contact with active translators Genuine contact to authentic problems encountered in real life Teachers backup team Promoting networking and future employability, bridging the generation gap Excellent reviews from university side, envy by other departments!

15 Examples of documents in teaching use

16 Thank you! Liisa Laakso-Tammisto Sworn/official/authorised translator since 1980 Untenured teacher at Helsinki University SKTL past President and Board Member


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