Terminology Janina, Marius, Mareen, Ina and Romina Concept What is a concept? A concept is represented by a symbol that we use to name any object e.g. plant green tree wood concept symbol How do we identify concepts? The process of concept formation is used to identify concepts 1. Observation and identifying objects as having certain properties 2. Abstraction of properties to name the concept 3. Building groups of abstract types of objects into broader classes Why do we need characteristics? The necessary or “essential” characteristics are important to separate one concept from the other e.g. Concept of water vs. concept of lemonade The identifying or “essential” characteristic may be the sweetness of lemonade in this case Tree structure of concept “liquids” Intension = the sum of all characteristics Extension = the range of objects Liquids Milk Coffee Juice Cow Sheep Mocca Latte Orange Lemon 1. 2. Characteristics can be expressed as: properties of the specific concept or relations to other concepts Next to those characteristics we also need specific classes that concepts belong to Types of concepts Many different types of concepts need to be structured carefully Three main methods to structure concepts: 1. class concepts 2. property concepts 3. relation concepts 1. Class concepts Concepts can be attributed to a class to identify the type of concept e.g. “Venus” is attributed to the class of planets 2. Property concepts Concepts can be grouped according to common properties and the distinctive features of a class e.g. quadrupeds = animals having four legs The common property = “quadrupeds” It can be divided by the distinctive of “being tamed for human use” into domestic and wild animals 3. Relation concepts Concepts can be differentiated by the relationships between categories e.g. tables, chairs, cupboards = furniture It can be further differentiated into “household furniture” and “office furniture” Relationships Important way to structure concepts because any type of conceptual relationship can be relevant e.g. an object can be related to its geographical origin, its material substance, its method of production, etc. To structure relationships and to differentiate between them, they are divided up into the following main subgroups: 1. Generic relationship 2. Partitive relationship 1. Generic relationship Divides concepts up according to a hierarchy: Broader (generic) concept is superordinate to Narrower (specific) concept This most common type of relationship can be expressed by the formula: X is a type of A Or X, Y, Z are types of A Or A has the specific concepts X, Y, Z Or A has the subtype X The following example presents a horizontal relationship with several layers Publication Periodic publication Non-periodic publication Monograph Etc. News Magazine Journal Book Letter At each lower level the degree of specifity becomes higher, the intention becomes narrower 2. Partitive relationship Also called “whole-part-relationship” Needed to indicate the connection between concepts consisting of more than one part and their constituent parts Can be expressed in the following formula: X is a constituent part of Y Or X, Y, Z are constituent parts of A Or A consists of X Or A consists of X, Y, Z, Natural Science Physics Chemistry Biology Pure Applied Organic Chemistry Inorganic Chemistry Botany Zoology Subject classification Needed to classify larger groups of concepts next to the relationship Groups can be found in traditional dictionaries and glossaries as a hierarchical or alphabetical order. Limited by the fact that they cannot reflect relationships 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. The thesaurus is a compromise solution between classification and conceptual relationships. It has a deep hierarchical structure with (sometimes) seven or more sublevels e.g. In a Root-Thesaurus the “mechanical engineering” is subdivided into “Heat engineering” “Fluid engineering” “Vacuum engineering” “Prime movers” “Mechanical systems” At the end we are left with categories of topics or subject areas and not with concepts of separate entities, activities, properties or relations Subject classification helpful in structuring and selection of entities for a specialised dictionary But beyond this we need a broad structure as well as a complex set of relationships Definitions What is a Definition in Terminology? “The explanation of the accepted specialised meanings of lexical items the occurrence of which can be documented in a variety of sources“ Methods of Definition There are various methods of definition Choice of method according to: the nature of the concept which has to be defined the particular purpose of the definition Definition by Analysis pneumonia = an inflammation of the lung tissue stomatitis = an inflammation of the mouth dog = a domesticated carnivorous mammal Definition by Synonyms software daisy dog = logiciel = bellis perennis = canis lupus forma familiaris Definition by Paraphrase whiteness flotation lengthen = the state of being white = the act of making something float = the process of making something longer Definition by Synthesis metatarsalgia = a painful neuralgic condition of the foot, felt in the ball of the foot and often spreading thence up the leg dog = a domesticated carnivorous mammal related to the foxes and wolves and raised in a large variety of breeds Definition by Implication dial = a clock or watch has a dial divided into segments for hours and minutes over which the hands move diagnosis = we make a diagnosis when we identify certain symptoms as characteristic of specific conditions Definition by Denotation dog = dogs are spaniels, poodles, Pekinese, alsatians and similar animals ocean = oceans are the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Indian Ocean Definition by Demonstration Definition by showing drawings, photographs or pointing to an object A Theory of Terms The Onomasiological Approach Lexicographer: collects „all‟ words of a language, sorts them in various ways Terminologist: interest in subsets of the lexicon, which constitute the vocabulary of special language needs to structure knowledge orders terms he has discovered by reference to a conceptual system Rarely involved in the process of naming an original concept !!! A word can belong to more than one area of knowledge terminologist has to distinguish meaning before he distinguishes words The Traditional Terminological Theory A „naming‟ approach It starts from concepts and looks for the names of these concepts Avoids occurrence of homonyms Terminological dictionary: words are ordered in single entries with each separate sense of a word The Lexicographical Approach A „meaning‟ approach It starts from words and looks for their meaning Terms and Their Forms Terms are the linguistic representation of concepts Special language: strive to systematize principles of designation and name concepts according to pre-specified rules Process of scientific observation and description includes designation of concepts manipulating lexical forms English Terminology Synthetic and analytic means of term formation a) Synthetic methods: modify lexical items by means of affixes b) Analytic methods: combine independent and lexical units into larger units (e.g. compounding) Modern Terminological Theory Accepts the occurrence of synonymic expressions and variants of terms Terminology adopts a corpus-based approach to lexical data collection a term is no longer seen as a separate item Terms in Dictionaries Concepts represented in terminological dictionaries are predominantly expressed by the linguistic form of nouns Only selected verbs and adjectives Dictionary entries are relatively uniform: Semantic and pragmatic information Graphic information Acronyms / other abbreviated forms Contextual variations Multiple compound nouns Homonyms, Synonyms and Variations No concept of only one designation Need to establish criteria for identifying the one regular and proper name for a concept to which the other are variants Status of Terms Terms can have a variable pragmatic status It is associated with their age, acceptability, exclusiveness of existence and spread of use TERM-DEFINITION-CONCEPT (e.g. „sitt‟ (German)) Translation theory „quality label‟ Processes of Terminologisation Terminologist: 1. Recorder of new terms 2. Advisor on designation 3. Administrator of gradual evolution of terms Terminologisation: evolution of concepts is accompanied by stages of naming In the development of knowledge the concepts undergo changes Innovation in science is dependent upon our ability to question the validity of certain concepts while keeping others fixed The Question of Terminologisation is Fundamental to the Description of Special Language Special communication: particular grouping of lexical items must be clearly assigned to either free collocations or compounds Idioms used by specialists are terminologised Problem for lexicographers: must distinguish between inherent and the collocational meaning of the lexical item Difficulties for terminologists: recognition of terminological units in running texts lexicalization solves the problem by form of external characteristic like graphemic signs terminologisation is less dependent on such devices, because special language users are expected to know the appropriate concepts A Model of Communication A Model of Communication Two specialists in the same discipline Sender is motivated to transmit a message Sender expects recipient message to receive 1. 2. 3. 4. Message is the totality of Intention Assumed expectations Knowledge content Language selected by sender Specialist communication is highly conventional and stylised Intention transmitted by non- linguistical means through 1. text forms of instructions 2. manuals 3. income tax returns,..... 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Compositional signals to signify intention Includes devices as lay- out capitalisation underlining paragraph numbering subtitling Footnotes and bibliographic references fulfil an additional intention Communication is not successful, if sender‟s intention is misinterpreted!!! How do you achieve a successful communication? 1. Choice of intention 2. The selection of Knowledge 3. Choice of language The Functional Efficacy of Terms Use of special languages restricted Special language differs from general language in that : a) Constituted of special text types 1. laboratory reports 2. test certifications 3. special syntax b) Use of terms in addition to words Criteria for evaluating effectiveness of communication ( 3 objectives) : Message should be: 1. economical 2. precise 3. appropriate Standardization Conceptual innovation becomes manifested in the creation of new terms New terms are introduced to fill gaps or to replace existing ones A new concept becomes standardized when users reach public agreement Sets of definitions in textbooks, glossaries or manuals are the outward manifestation of this process Standardization is fixation of meaning Motivation for Standardization In the interest of: Economy Precision Appropriateness Principles of Standardization Standardization is introduced after new concepts, objects and processes are established Then names are given to these new concepts Many alternatives exist Standardization is a retrospective activity Instruments of Standardization How do terms become standardized? Nomenclature commissions play a role in the efforts of standardization in their particular subject fields In the industrial sector, national standardization bodies are active Very few guidelines for the selection, definition and publication of terminology lack of uniformity ISO (International Organization for Standardization) Issued basic recommendations Works on principles of and guidelines for terminology Objectives of Standardization ISO established seven principles on standardization 1. Objects are standardized first and then a term becomes standardized 2. Standardization is a social and economic activity 3. The publication of a standard has little value in itself 4. The establishment of a standard firstly requires a choice of a suitable term and secondly a fixation of this term and this definition 5. Standardization must be re- examined at regular intervals and revised 6. It is necessary to determine test methods in order to verify whether the object conforms to the specifications 7. A standard has to be legally enforced and is a matter of convenience and economy Methods of Standardization 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. There is a variety of methods and possibilities available to standardization Redefinition of words Redefinition of existing terms Derivation Composition Borrowing Compression The Efficacy of Standard in Terminology Standardization makes communication more effective Standards are: economical precise appropriate When the social, situational and intellectual role differences between participants in communication are minimal a higher proportion of standardized terms can be used Standardization undermines the creativity of a language Standardizing Agencies and Glossaries They produce glossaries to facilitate communication The British Standards Guide says about terms contained in a standard glossary that „Terminology within a standard should be consistent, so that the same object or concept is always described or expressed by the same term and not by the use of synonyms“ The members of a standardizing company determine which terms get included Only very few areas of British standardization are covered by glossaries Glossaries can be written before standardization of objects, methods or specifications begins Glossaries can be compiled after standards are established to collect the terminology So glossaries may be needed to prepare effective standards and effective standards lead to glossaries Glossaries fulfil the aim of standardization to provide means of communication Thank you for your attention!!!
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