ATA’s blog “The Savvy Newcomer” reblogs an IMOT post!

thanks2A lot of great things have happened since I started this blog less than a year ago, and I can tell you that this is one of the highlights of its short but productive blog life. ATA’s blog called “The Savvy Newcomer” had asked permission to reblog my post “The Ins and Outs of Term Validation” and today they have published it.

You can read it in their blog by clicking here.

Now, that’s what I call real VALIDATION!

Thank you ATA and thank you followers for being here. Sending all my terminology love from Barcelona.



Visit to the Centre for Terminology in the Catalan language, TERMCAT

With Glòria Fontovas i Hugas at their library

Last week I had the opportunity to visit the Centre for Terminology in the Catalan Language (TERMCAT), established in 1985 by the Government of Catalonia and the Institute of Catalan Studies.

“TERMCAT’s mission includes the task of standardising neologisms from the speciality lexicon. The Centre approaches this work in two ways: (i) By approving the Catalan forms of new terms that emerge in the fields of science, technology and the humanities, whether because no proposed form already exists or because forms are being circulated that are inappropriate from the linguistic or terminology point of view; (ii) By establishing linguistic and terminological criteria to facilitate terminology work and the development of specialist languages in Catalan.”

I had the pleasure to meet Glòria Fontova i Hugas, Head of the Networks and Cooperation Area, who thoroughly explained the history (they will turn 30 this May 13!), ongoing projects, products and advisory services, and the cooperation efforts with several terminology networks and universities, and guided me through their amazing website ( where I was able to see how powerful their free-of-charge Cercaterm is and introduced me to their excellent online dictionaries and library, explained how to download their open data, and, of course, we took a close look at their famous Neoloteca. (Read their page in English here). And, of course, they have a great blog that keeps their readers updated on the latest news on Terminology and current issues and share the Term of the Week. Read More

IMOT is taking a short break!

oie_deep_breath_cornuecopia_typepadDear followers:

February has been pretty hectic as I try to cope with training courses and work, but FINALLY this week: a short visit to Barcelona to celebrate my birthday and my husband’s birthday which happen to be on the same month.

Lately, I have been debating on whether I should publish a few posts before leaving this week, but the truth is I’m too busy trying to cope with all of that plus little administrative things that take up most of the free time that I usually dedicate to sit down, read, and write. I might be publishing a few things here and there, depending on what becomes available during my absence.

So, bear with me. I thank you again for following my blog. A special welcome to the new subscribers and, in the meantime, don’t forget to visit and subscribe (if you haven’t done so yet) to the other terminology blogs that I list on this page.

Take care and don’t forget to share the Terminology love!


Featuring Terminology IMOToolBox: Termium Plus

print_logoYou probably have heard about and used TermiumPlus from the Government of Canada, a terminology and linguistic data bank, which includes close to four million English, French, Spanish, and Portuguese terms. It contains abbreviations, acronyms, synonyms, geographical names, official titles of organizations, titles of legislation and programs, phraseological units and examples of usage.

But did you also know that you can:

  1. Customize your Termium searches to suit your needs and make your searches faster. Do it HERE!
  2. Download TermiumPlus Mobile App to consult the data bank anytime and anywhere (EN/FR) by clicking on the logo below!termium plus
  3. Send e-cards of the language portal to your Facebook friends.
  4. Find quick answers to your language questions searching in “Gateway to English / Le Français sans secrets”.
  5. Take language quizzes.
  6. Subscribe to the language portal and receive email notifications.
  7. Consult glossaries and vocabularies: Most provided at no charge, to consult them or to download them. The majority are bilingual (English-French, French-English). Some also include equivalent terms in other languages such as Spanish, Portuguese and Italian, and some are in Aboriginal languages.
  8. Read Language update: A freely available quarterly journal that contains solutions to commonly occurring language problems, tools of the trade and language industry news.
  9. Learn about terminology with their Pavel Terminology Tutorial, a great place to go for anyone exploring terminology for the first time and as a reference tool. It is offered in seven languages: English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Arabic and Dutch.
  10. Consult their excellent writing tools available in English, French, and Spanish. See all the links HERE. Below is a table with the tools by language.

Read More

TermTerm: Multilingual database containing terminology’s terminology

termtermTermTerm is a freely accessible multilingual terminology database containing about 1.600 terms: central concepts of terminology work and definitions taken from relevant terminology standards, in German (1350 terms), English (1.900 terms), French (950 terms), and Greek (1.100 terms). It is available in SDL MultiTerm Online and quickTerm.

The original data is the result of a collaboration between students of the MA program “Terminology and Language Engineering” of the Cologne University of Applied Sciences in Germany, the Hellenic Society for Terminology (ELETO), and elcat (an innovative e-learning system for terminology launched by the Cologne University of Applied Sciences, in collaboration with selected industry partners and the International Network for Terminology -TermNet).

Over the course of several projects, these institutions found it necessary to clarify the terminology of terminology and to prepare this data in a terminological database.

Also added to my page “Terminology Terms“.

Who is Who in Terminology? Alfred Schlomann (1878-1952)

schlomanSchlomann was a renowned German engineer and industrialist who became a terminologist after he started a project of preparing a series of technical dictionaries. Eugene Wüster’s research was partially based on theories established by Schlomann and his systematic ordering of specialized terminologies in specialized vocabularies. In the eyes of Wüster, he was one of the “four dynamic and forward-looking men” who fostered the development of terminology during the first half of the century (alongside de Saussure, Dresen and Homstrom).

The vision inspiring Schlomann’s dictionaries (21 volumes) was that productivity was closely linked to accurate terminology management. By 1905 he had been invited by the Verein Beratender Ingenieure (VBI) to start a multilingual dictionary project, “Illustrated technical dictionaries”, in English, Russian, French, Italian, and Spanish, with illustrations and alphabetical indexes in each language, covering most technological fields and their industrial applications (e.g. machinery and machine tools, steel, oil, plastics, textiles, paper and wood, gas and gas engines, agricultural machinery). He gathered financial support for his dictionary which included a team of 1.000 people (including subject experts to ensure reliability and comprehensiveness of definitions) distributed throughout seven countries and taking over 35 years to complete (1906-1940).

Read More

Diploma of Postgraduate Studies: Terminology and Professional Needs

pompeuThe Pompeu Fabra University is offering this excellent Diploma that will take place from April 8 to July 24. Click on the logo to read the program and other important details!
The Diploma of Postgraduate Studies: Terminology and Professional Needs, the only one of its kind, explores the contribution and relevance of terminology in many areas of knowledge. The course looks at the fundamental role that terminology plays in documentation, lexicography, linguistic normalization, language teaching and linguistic engineering. Knowledge, skills and resources for each of these areas is explored.
The objectives of the programme are to give participants a broad view of terminology, including the following:
• To go deeper into the interdisciplinary basics of terminology.
• To examine in detail the relationship between terminology and documentation, translation, lexicography, linguistic standardisation, language teaching and linguistic engineering.
Potential candidates
Translators and interpreters, documentalists, technical writers, journalists involved in scientific dissemination, lexicographers and dictionary editors, editors of scientific magazines, philologists and linguists interested in lexicon, text book editors, teachers of languages for specific purposes, teachers and specialists in various subjects interested in building subject-specific glossaries.

Featuring Terminology IMOToolBox: EcoLexicon

ecolexicon sampleAlthough this terminological knowledge base is dedicated exclusively to the environment, I believe it is worth a special mention here for several reasons: It is a free-access database, it has a user-friendly visual interface with different modules for conceptual, linguistic, and graphical data, it covers 6 languages – Spanish, English, German, Modern Greek, Russian and Dutch, and so far it has 3,547 concepts and 18,875 terms!

The knowledge base is the work of the LexiCon Research Group at the University of Granada, using the approach known as frame-based terminology (a cognitive approach developed by Faber et. al. –see my post on terminology theories).

Read More

The “Triple Constraint” of Terminology Projects

Iron-TriangleA common topic discussed in terminology training courses deals with project constraints known as the “Triple Constraint”: scope, time (schedule), and cost (budget/resources). They are an important part of project management processes because they limit the smooth running of a project by creating  bottlenecks or restrictions. Your Project Charter usually includes accounts for project constraints, also known as The Iron Triangle because you can rarely change one constraint without also impacting the others. An additional element that is affected by this interaction is quality (“Tetrad”). (In some manuals scope is also regarded as quality). This is why they are represented in a triangle, in which each part affects the other, with quality in the middle of the figure:

Read More

Writing your first Project Charter

project-charter terminologyThe Charter is a key document that brings together all the separate pieces of information about the project with a view to ensure the buy-in from all the stakeholders. Proper construction of a project charter can help ensure the success of any project.

If it is your first attempt at writing a Charter find a mentor who can advise and direct you. The best way to approach it is to think that it’s just a form (download this template) that you need to fill in, and there are many versions of such a form available online that can guide you, in case you need to use it (or you can write your own version).

Read More

Who is Who in Terminology: Ferdinand de Saussure (1857-1913)

de SaussureFerdinand Mongin de Saussure was a linguist and semiotician born in Geneva, Switzerland. At 15 he was already a polyglot (being familiar with French, German, English, Latin, Greek and Sanskrit) and was already attempting to develop a ‘general system of language.” He obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Leipzig, where he studied Indo-European languages. By the age of 21 he had already published a book on the vowel system in Indo-European languages. His most influential work, “Course in General Linguistics”, was published posthumously in 1916 by two of his former students. A curious fact, since Wüster’s Theory of Terminology was also published posthumously and de Saussure was one of his major influencers!

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The Ins and Outs of Term Validation

validationEvery step in term processing during the preparation of glossaries or updating of termbases is important, but probably the one that will save you the most time is term validation. How and when it’s done is key to achieve cost-effective/efficient validation.

What is term validation?

Validation (conceptual/linguistic) is the verification and quality control process used to make sure a term or list of terms is accurate according to preferred usage or requirements established by the terminologist or the team involved in the process. It includes a series of steps such as evaluating the quality of the resources available (e.g., corpora) and consolidating terminological data (e.g. into glossaries). It involves choosing between several term candidates to pick a preferred term or even creating your own terms (neologisms). In some cases, validation also includes writing new or updated definitions.

Who does term validation? Read More

How to Justify Your Terminology Project Goals

path-to-goalIn a previous post I talked about how to identify and write your SMART goals. Now we need to talk about how we go about justifying them.

First, you need to present your business case: a start-up document for your boss/client with the pros and cons of your project, based on the resources allocated, presenting the business issue (for example create a termbase), identifying project options (design it yourself/expert or buy CAT tool), benefits (see my section on the benefits of managing terminology), costs, risks, and scope. See also my section on the Terminology Business Case for more info.

Read More

Featuring Terminology IMOToolBox: IATE Database

IATE terminlogy

Screen capture of IATE’s App

IATE (InterActive Terminology for Europe) is the terminology database for all EU institutions.

It has been operational since the summer of 2004 and you can search the public version in 23 languages and 22 main subject areas, including politics, law, economics, trade, finance, education, science, business, environment, agriculture, energy, industry and geography, among others.

The Internet version of IATE receives over 70 million queries a year. Search in IATE

Read More

Writing Your Terminology Project Goals

PM cakeMost trainers explain the PM process using the cake analogy, and when it comes to goals it is useful to see it from that perspective, too. Read More