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Durham e-Theses
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Consultation behaviours with online resources in English-Chinese translation: an eye-tracking, screen-recording, and retrospective study

CUI, YIXIAO (2022) Consultation behaviours with online resources in English-Chinese translation: an eye-tracking, screen-recording, and retrospective study. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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Online resources which support translators in their workplace in the digital age have undergone rapid development in both their variety and efficiency. Most existing studies focus on describing the characteristics of consultation, leaving two critical issues unexplored: the factors influencing consultation and the impact of consultation on translation products.
To fill this gap, the present study intends to answer the following three questions: (1) What is the effect of information needs on consultation behaviour? (2) What is the effect of translation experience on consultation behaviour? (3) What is the effect of consultation behaviour on translation quality? 68 participants (22 language learners, 23 translation students, and 23 professional translators) were recruited to translate three 100-word texts from English (L2) into Chinese (L1). Their translation (using the Translog II interface) and consultation processes were recorded using a Tobii eye-tracker with a built-in screen-recording function. Retrospective interviews and post-translation questionnaires were used to categorise the translation problems that were encountered and to collect the participants’ background information.
The main findings are as follows: (1) as the perceived translation difficulty increases, the amount and proportion of attention on consultation, the number of online resource types, and the number of transitions show an upward trend, but cognitive load on consultation is not affected; (2) consultation for production problems involves a greater amount of attention and a higher complexity than for comprehension translation problems; (3) consultation behaviour is generally target-oriented, and information relevance evaluation is consistent with the information required by the types of translation problem; (4) the reliance on consultation shows an inverted U-shape relationship with translation experience; and (5) longer consultation only benefits the production of individual solutions but not holistic target texts.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:consultation; English-Chinese translation; eye-tracking; screen-recording; retrospective interview; allocation of cognitive resources; translation quality
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Modern Languages and Cultures, School of
Thesis Date:2022
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:06 Jul 2022 11:12

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