Last week, Dr Lucas Vieira from the University of Bristol visited RGCL and gave a seminar as part of the MA Computational Linguistics. Dr Vieira’s talk was well received by the MA students and attended by members of the Research Group.
Title: UK Cognitive effort and translation technologies
Measuring the level of effort required by translation tasks has several applications in academia and industry, including understanding what goes on in translators’ minds and being able to predict effort when planning and managing translation projects. Effort is therefore a frequently researched topic in translation, but measuring cognitive (or mental) effort is not straightforward. This talk will examine the implications of using different data sources to estimate cognitive effort. First, it will present results of a study where a multivariate analysis was used to investigate the relationship between different measures of cognitive effort in post-editing of machine translation, including eye-movement metrics, pauses, and subjective ratings. It will then provide preliminary results of a second study where eye tracking was used to observe trainee translators’ first-ever interaction with computer-assisted translation tools. The talk will show how mouse clicks can be used to complement eye-movement data in translation research and will argue that care should be taken in choosing appropriate measures of effort depending on the study questions and the sample size. Although different measures of cognitive effort are, as expected, often found to be correlated, it was observed that these measures can be clustered together in different groups, which has implications for research and for how the concept of cognitive effort is formulated and understood.