A critical approach on translation as a learning activity in FL (Foreign Language) classes
A One of the main issues addressed in the field of Translation Studies regards the usefulness of translation as a learning activity in language classes. Indeed, the use of translation has been perceived differently and it has been the object of criticism and controversy in foreign language teaching. The present paper aims at investigating the contribution of translation as a pedagogical tool in foreign language classes by suggesting that there is a strong relationship between translation and foreign language learning in the sense that it helps learners acquire, develop and further strengthen their knowledge and competences in a foreign language. Αfter providing readers with a description of translation as a multidimensional activity, a main distinction is made between three types of teaching activities which all involve translation but they are used in different contexts: language teaching, translation teaching and translator training. Afterwards, the present research focuses on the basic arguments for and against the use of translation in language teaching, followed by some proposals so that translation can be effectively incorporated into a foreign language class. The main conclusion is that translation should be thought of as a challenging, supporting and creative learning activity to foreign language learning that would help students to further develop their language competences.
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