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Two completely different links for you in your lunch hour…

Following the recent shocking news that the University of Bradford has had to shut down its postgraduate course in Translating and Interpreting course due to lack of funding, this first link is to a petition to the Prime Minister entitled ‘Save language provision in higher education, particularly Interpreting and Translating’. Click here to add your name to the list of people who feel strongly about this. You have until 18th December 2008 to do it (so no excuses).

The wording of the the petition is as follows: ‘If the government really wants to promote language learning, it not only needs to encourage more pupils to take languages at GCSE, but also to support language departments at a higher level. Allowing these departments to close will be detrimental to the government’s long-term language objectives’.

A bit of background information: following the Government decision a few years ago to remove languages from the list of compulsory subjects at GCSE, the number of students choosing to study a language at GCSE, A-level and consequently, degree-level in the UK is said to have plummeted. In my opinion, that Government decision was a huge mistake. The value of studying another language and the insight that gives you into other cultures cannot be underestimated.  It is also a grave concern in terms of the future of professions such as translating and interpreting.

And finally…the second link I found on the Naked Translations blog and it made me giggle. It is an excerpt from the ITV program ‘Headcases’ showing French President Nicolas Sarkozy (he’s getting to be a recurring topic of my posts here).  Laugh away, but don’t forget about the petition!

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  1. […] some of the blame to the decreasing number of children studying languages at GCSE level. I wrote a post in June about a petition to the Prime Minister to save foreign language provision in UK secondary schools, […]

  2. […] worth, I couldn’t agree more.  This article should really be used as an addendum to the petition I told you about in June. Share and […]

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June 25, 2008

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