Skip to main content

Linguee

http://www.linguee.com

I've just come across the brilliant dictionary and translation/search engine site Linguee. This is a major addition to the tools available to teachers, students and translators. It comes from a team in Germany and could be serious competition for Wordreference. You can search individual words or whole phrases and idiomatic expressions and it will use its search engine to find the translations in real contexts, something Wordreference does not do. I would need to spend longer with it to see how useful it is in everyday use, but first impressions are very good.

They say:

Linguee is a unique translation tool combining an editorial dictionary and a search engine with which you can search through hundreds of millions of bilingual texts for words and expressions.

The Linguee search results are divided into two sections. On the left hand side you will see results from our reliable editorial dictionary. The results are displayed clearly and offer you a quick overview of the translation options. On the right hand side, you will find example sentences from other sources to provide you with an impression of how your search expression has been translated in context.

Compared to traditional online dictionaries, Linguee contains about 1,000 times more translated texts, which are displayed in full sentences. , Linguee will show translations for expressions such as "strong evidence", "strong relationship" or "strong opinion", and even for rare expressions or specific technical terms.

The young editors are at pains to say that it is not an internet translator. They add:

The vocabulary you see on the left hand side has been checked by our editors and is constantly enhanced manually.

The majority of the example sentences you see on the right hand side is from the bilingual web, particularly from professionally translated websites of companies, organizations, and universities. Other valuable sources include EU documents and patent specifications.
A specialised computer program, a web crawler, automatically searches the internet for multiple language webpages. These pages are detected automatically, and the translated sentences and words are extracted. The texts are then evaluated by a machine-learning algorithm which filters out the high quality translations for display. This system is capable of autonomously learning new quality criteria from user feedback to tell good translations from bad ones. It has found out, for instance, that a page is usually machine translated if it contains the word "Wordpress" while many words are literally translated. Through this training process, our algorithm is continuously learning to find thousands of such correlations and reliably extract the best translations autonomously. Our computers have already compared more than a trillion sentences. At the end of the day, only the top 0.01 per cent, i.e. 100 million of the translated sentences, are retained.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

What teachers are saying about The Language Teacher Toolkit

"The Language Teacher Toolkit is a really useful book for language teachers to either read all the way through or dip into. What I like about it is that the authors Steve Smith and Gianfranco Conti are totally upfront about what they believe to be good practice but back it up with research evidence." (Ernesto Macaro, Oxford University Department of Education)

"I absolutely love this book based on research and full of activities..  The best manual I've read so far. One of our PDs from the Australian Board of Studies recommended your book as an excellent resource.  I look forward to the conference here in Sydney." Michela Pezzi, Teacher, Australia, Facebook)

"Finally, a book for World Language teachers that provides practical ideas and strategies that can actually be used in the classroom, rather than dry rhetoric and theory that does little to inspire creativity in ways that are engaging for both students and teachers alike." (USA teacher, Amazon review)

New GCSE resources on frenchteacher

As well as writing resources for the new A-levels, I have in recent months been posting a good range of materials to support the new GCSEs. First exams are not until 2018, but here is what you can find on the site in addition to the many other resources (grammar exercises, texts, video listening etc).

I shall not produce vocabulary lists since the exam board specifications now offer these, with translations.

Foundation Tier 

AQA-style GCSE 2016 Role-plays
AQA-style GCSE 2016 Photo card conversations
AQA-style GCSE 2016 Photo card conversations (2)
100 translation sentences into French (with answers)
Reading exam
Reading exam (2)
How to write a good Foundation Tier essay (ppt)
How to write a good Foundation Tier essay (Word)

Higher Tier 

AQA-style GCSE 2016 Photo card conversations (Higher tier)
AQA-style GCSE 2016 Photo card conversations (Higher tier) (2)
20 translations into French (with answers)
Reading exam (Higher tier)
How to write a good Higher Tier essay (ppt)
How to write a…

5 great zero preparation lesson ideas

When the pressure is on and there are only so many hours on the week, you need a repertoire of zero preparation go-to activities which promote input and/or practice. Here are five you might well find useful.

1. My weekend

We know that listening is the most important yet often neglected skill for language learning. It's also something some pupils find hard to do. To develop listening skill and provide tailored comprehensible input try this:

You tell the class you are going to recount what you did last weekend and that they have to make notes in English. The amount of detail you go into and the speed you go will depend on your class. Talk for about three minutes. If you spent the whole weekend marking, you can always make stuff up!

You then make some true or false (maybe not mentioned too) statements in the target language about what you said in your account. Class gives hands up (or no hands up) answers. This can then lead into a simple pair work task where pupils make up their own tru…

Three AQA A-level courses compared

I've put together my three reviews of worthy A-level courses which you might be considering for next September. They are all very useful courses, but with significant differences. The traditional Hodder and OUP book-based courses differ in that the former comes in one chunky two year book, whilst OUP's comes in two parts, the first for AS or the first year of an A-level course. The Attitudes16 course by Steve Glover and Nathalie Kaddouri is based on an online platform from which you would download worksheets and share a logon with studenst who would do the interactive parts (Textivate and video work). The two text books are supported by interactive material (Kerboodle) or an e-text book.

Attitudes16





An excellent resource which should be competing for your attention at the moment is the Attitudes16 course which writers Steve Glover and Nathalie Kaddouri have been working on for some time. You can find it here at dolanguages.com, along with his excellent resources for film and li…

The Language Teacher Toolkit review

We were delighted to receive a review of The Language Teacher Toolkit from eminent applied linguist Ernesto Macaro from Oxford University. Macaro is a leader in the field of second language acquisition and applied linguistics. His main research interests are teacher-student interaction and language learning strategies pupils can use to improve their progress.

Here is Professor Macaro's review:
The Language Teacher Toolkit is a really useful book for language teachers to either read all the way through or dip into. What I like about it is that the authors Steve Smith and Gianfranco Conti are totally upfront about what they believe to be good practice but back it up with research evidence. So for example the ‘methodological principles’ on page 11 are supported by the research they then refer to later in the book and this approach is very similar to the one that we (Ernesto Macaro, Suzanne Graham, Robert Woore) have adopted in our ‘consortium project’(http://pdcinmfl.com). The point i…