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Translation Challenge to take Arab learning to the next level

Staff Reporter/Dubai
Filed on April 2, 2018 | Last updated on April 2, 2018 at 11.59 pm
Sheikh Mohammed with the volunteers and students at the Translation Factory.- Wam
Sheikh Mohammed with the volunteers and students at the Translation Factory.- Wam

The challenge calls for translating 5,000 videos and 11 million words of educational content into Arabic.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, followed up on the progress of the Translation Challenge, which falls under the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Arabic eLearning Project.

The project aims to offer over 50 million Arab students around the world access to 5,000 educational videos for free, after the comprehensive challenge dedicated to Arabising educational content in maths and sciences.

He was accompanied to the Translation Factory by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai. The challenge calls for translating 5,000 videos and 11 million words of educational content into Arabic. Over 300 dedicated volunteers have already translated 1,500 videos and 3 million words.

Sheikh Mohammed personally oversaw the launch of the content approval phase, in line with the current curriculum, as well as the formation of the study groups which will ensure the quality of the videos, before their official launch in October. He also oversaw the overall progress of the challenge, including video selection, content translation and voiceovers for the videos. Sheikh Mohammed and Sheikh Hamdan also participated by lending their voices to an educational video.

"We have one team of thousands of volunteers to start a new phase in the education of the Arab World. Our students need to have access to advanced educational content, and the Mohammed Bin Rashid eLearning Project will be the largest platform to provide it," Sheikh Mohammed said, adding that math and sciences are the key to reviving Arab civilisation.

"We need to provide support to maths and sciences material in our schools, and to encourage and support our students in these fields, so that we can shape a generation of Arab scientists, researchers and thinkers. This is the fastest way to bridging the education gap in the Arab world."

The Mohammed Bin Rashid Arabic eLearning Project was launched in September 2017, and falls under the umbrella of Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives. The online initiative seeks to lay the foundation of a new knowledge base. Since its launch in September last year, the Translation Challenge has attracted more than 50,000 volunteers in the fields of translation, voiceover and video production, and publication. Among them, 2,500 were selected for their expertise. They include teachers, engineers, researchers, university students, employees, retirees, technicians, graphic designers and others.

The Translation Factory

The Translation Factory, which took place in Dubai, was a live simulation of the Translation Challenge mechanisms and processes. Volunteers from various Arab countries worked as editors, supervisors, fact checkers, technicians, creative designers and commentators.

Students from UAE schools also learned about the process of Arabisation from their teachers, before they watched and evaluated the final videos.

The translation process

>Educational videos chosen from international curricula

>Video content deduced into text

>Text was translated to Arabic

>Arabic version reviewed, audited

>Text then matched with approved educational curricula

>Integrated into Arabic curriculum through audio commentary

>Corresponding videos made, with visuals and graphics

>Presented to students from grades 7 to 12

>Students assess content, design, accuracy, clarity of video

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