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GUSTO Program Course Guide Graduate Unified Spanish Translation Online Program

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GUSTO Program Course Guide Graduate Unified Spanish Translation Online Program
1
GUSTO Program Course Guide
Graduate Unified Spanish Translation Online Program
Project Director: Dr. José Dávila-Montes.
The GUSTO Program is a project funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of
Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education, P116V090039. Implementing a Fully
Online Master’s Degree in Translation and Interpreting.
The unified nature of the GUSTO Program, in which all 12 courses have the same organization, frees
students from the burden of adjusting to differing course structures and streamlines the online learning
process. The program has been implemented on an online platform called Blackboard but has been
designed in such way that it can be implemented on other common platforms such as Moodle.
Once students familiarize themselves with the e-learning platform and the course structure during
their first semester, the process will be the same for every class in the M.A. in Spanish Translation and
Interpreting. Most traditionally relevant sub-specialties in Translation and Interpreting are covered and
overlapping is avoided by a prerequisite system. This structure allows for flexibility, yet also for a cogent
progression.
Course Structure
Except for courses devised to be taught in the summer sessions, every course consists of six
biweekly units, each covering a different theory topic and translation type. The structure of each unit is
exactly the same, with the same dates for participation in the Discussion Boards and deadlines for
submitting assignments. For example:


Week 1 – The focus for the first week of every unit are the theory readings in the Teoría tab in
the Course Menu, and the first draft of the translation exercise.
o Upon clicking the Teoría link, students will see the list of available theory readings
for each unit (i.e., Unit 1: Introduction to Translation), and a short list of learning
objectives associated with the unit. These objectives are aligned with the Student
Learning
Week 2 – During the second week of every unit, students will focus on revising the first draft of
their translation exercise and debating translation problems from said exercises and from the
other activities for the current unit.
o Instructors will return the drafts that students submitted on Sunday of the first week by
Wednesday of the second week, with corrections, comments and suggestions for
improvement. Students will receive their corrected first drafts in their inbox via the
Entregas tab. They must review the instructor’s revisions and comments, make all
necessary changes, and submit their final versions via the Entregas tab by Sunday of the
second week of each unit, before midnight.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
2
o
Although students are encouraged to start making posts on translation problems from
the activities for each unit during the first week, they are only required to start doing so
in the Práctica forum during the second week. They may ask questions about
terminology, grammar, sources of documentation, etc., by creating threads, and also
join discussions in threads created by their classmates by posting replies to such issues
and offering solutions in a reciprocal, collaborative fashion. The instructor serves as a
guide for discussion, steering it towards those areas most conducive to resolving
translation difficulties, cementing in the students’ minds the methods for doing so, and
also exploring the wider theoretical implications (and referring to the theory readings
for this purpose) of such difficulties.
Accessing the Blackboard Platform
Upon logging into Blackboard, users will click into the specific course.
The Course Menu is located on the left-hand side, where the user can access every other area of the
course.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
3
Here follows the description of the main menu options offered:

A syllabus is made available here before course registration so that
students may read it carefully and see what is required of them in the course, even though some
information, such as exam dates or instructor emails, may not be displayed at that time.

Here a student may access and view their instructors’ resumes or
curriculum vitae.

(Announcements) Here are displayed all the announcements from
the instructor, with the most recent ones at the top of the page. This is the course’s default
page, and functions as the “meeting point” where all students with the same instructors begin
their sessions.


(Course Syllabus) Students will find the complete syllabus here.
(Course Schedule) Here students can see the topic to be covered in
each biweekly unit, the calendar dates for each one, the name of the translation exercises, and
deadlines for all assignments, projects and exams.

(Faculty) Users will see the list of faculty members teaching the
course here.

(Theory) Via this link, students may access the theory readings for
each unit, which are made available one by one as the class proceeds through the course
materials. Students may read the materials on-screen within the Blackboard platform, or they
may download a PDF file of the readings and print them.

(Practice) Here the students access the activities for each unit,
including the assigned document(s) to be translated and additional exercises to improve
translation skills.

(Readings) If instructors assign additional readings (articles, book
chapters) aside from those found in the Teoría tab, students will access them here.

(Discussion boards) The forums are utilized much in the same way
the traditional classroom is. Here, students are able to debate and exchange ideas, and the
course instructor participates regularly to clarify confusing points and spur students to further
reflection.

Here students and teachers may communicate through their
personal e-mail accounts without the need to exit Blackboard.

(Submissions) This is the medium through which students will submit
all assignments and instructors return graded assignments. There are two folders, one for sent
items (Sent) and received ones (Inbox). When a user clicks on one of the folders, a list of all
messages is displayed, each with the following information: the name of the sender/recipient,
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
4
whether or not there is an attachment, the subject of the message, and the date and time it was
sent or received.

(Grades) Here students may view grades received for all
assignments, quizzes and exams, as well as participation grades in the discussion boards.

Occasionally, videos are recorded by instructors and posted for
some classes. They become available through Tegrity. For practically all translation courses, the
only recordings will be orientation videos to be viewed by new students before the start of the
course.

On this page can be found a few links geared towards helping users
to navigate and become familiar with the Blackboard online learning platform and the
institution’s other online services.
Course Schedule
All courses in the GUSTO Program share the same general structure, where each biweekly unit is
organized in the same way. Every class week starts on a Monday and ends Sunday at midnight. During
the first week students work on a first draft of the translation assignment and turn it in Sunday, while at
the same time debating in the discussion boards. The instructor returns students’ drafts with corrections
and commentary by Wednesday of the second week, and the final submission is due the Sunday second
week. Though there are deadlines for every activity, students may complete them at their best
convenience, working around their individual schedules – some may work one hour a day, others two or
three hours every other day, etc.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
5
Unit Learning Outcomes
Every unit provides a set of objectives, aligned with the Outcomes (SLOs) associated with completion of
the M.A. Program in Spanish Translation and Interpreting:






Students will develop critical reading skills, both in English and Spanish, by
learning to differentiate stylistic, formal, denotative and connotative aspects
within a text.
Students will translate general texts from English into Spanish and vice versa
at a professional level, by successfully dealing with major syntactical and
lexical problems, while accurately conveying meaning, both at a denotative
and at a connotative level.
Students will translate specialized texts from English into Spanish and
Spanish into English in the areas of legal, commercial, scientific, medical and
technical translation at a professional or quasi-professional level.
Students will be able to apply the latest field-related technologies to their
production of translated texts.
Students will be able to perform consecutive interpreting at a professional
level.
Students will produce theoretical writings of academic nature that show a
comprehensive understanding of most relevant theories of the discipline.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
6
Theory
Theory is generally addressed during the first week of every bi-weekly unit.
Students may read the theory on their computer screens by accessing the package file at the top of each
unit (Unidad 1 – Lección),
The package file link will lead to the table of contents for the unit’s theory readings, where each item on
the list is a hyperlink to that segment of the readings:
The user may return to the main page of the course with their browser’s Back button. This navigational
approach has been proved by research to provide students with additional structural support, by
mentally mapping the “physical location” of the item being read about within a wider “tree-like”
categorization.
They may also download the PDF file available at the bottom (Unidad 1 – PDF) for a more traditional
printer-oriented layout.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
7
After the students have thoroughly read and understood the theory, they shall proceed to discuss it and
ask questions in the Discussion Boards, where, typically, a minimum number of relevant postings is
required.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
8
Practice
While students can access the “Practice” section and start working on its contents right away from the
start of each unit, discussion on the assignments for that unit (Practice) is usually conducted during the
second week of every bi-weekly unit.
Aside from their participation in the Theory forum, students must be working on the translation exercise
and other activities for the unit found under the Práctica tab in the Course Menu. The list of activities
for each unit will always be displayed here.
Students must submit their first draft typically before midnight on Sunday of the first week of every unit,
via the Entregas tab.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
9
Discussion Boards (Foros)
The forums constitute a full 50% of the collaborative learning experience, in which instructors do not
merely answer questions, but participate more as moderators who comment on and steer students’
discussion in the most productive directions possible, continually urging them to think critically and
create new forum threads to explore topics that arise out of previous debates.
The access point to the boards is the Foros tab in the Course Menu. There are two forums for each unit,
one for the theory readings and one for the translation exercises (i.e., Unidad 1 – Teoría; Unidad 2 –
Práctica). The focus of the first week of every unit is the theory readings, however, both forums are
made available at the beginning of every unit, so students may comment in both whenever they wish.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
10
Depending on the size of the class roster, the number of messages posted for every bi-weekly unit
(theory and practice) may easily exceed the amount of 400.
At the top of the page are five columns: Forum, Description, Total Posts, Unread Posts, and Total
Participants.




Forum: the name of the forum is displayed here. It is a hyperlink that will take the user to a list
of all the threads created in that forum. Once there, the user may click on the name of any of
the threads under the Thread column to access the thread, read it and read any replies posted.
Description: here a message from the instructor is displayed, which usually includes some
questions related to the theory readings to encourage critical thinking and provide ideas for
topics of discussion.
Total Posts: the total number of posts for the forum is displayed.
Unread Posts: the amount of posts the user has not read for the particular forum is displayed.
The number is also a hyperlink which, if clicked, will display every unread post. This is useful
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
11

because the student may quickly bring himself up to date on all posts, reading them all on the
same page without having to navigate through several different threads.
Total Participants: the total number of users participating in the forum is displayed here.
At the top or bottom of every message, students may click the Reply button to publish a
response, or the Quote button to reply and include the text of the message they are responding
to at the bottom of their own post.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
12
Back on the main page of the forum they are working in, students may create threads for new
discussion topics with the Create Thread button near the top.
This button will take the user to a page with a text editor for composing their message. Once
they have provided a subject heading and written their message in the text box, they may
publish the thread with the Submit button at the bottom of the page. Alternatively, they may
click Cancel or Save Draft, in order to either delete the message being composed or save it to be
edited and posted at a later time.
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
13
Content © 2011. All Rights Reserved. GUSTO Program course manual. The University of Texas at Brownsville and Dr. Jose Davila-Montes, Ph. D.
This project is funded by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), U.S. Department of Education
P11V0900039. Implementing a Fully Online Master’s Degree in Trasnlation and Interpreting. Project director: Dr. Jose Davila-Montes.
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