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AU Administration in English

Full speed ahead for the translation and competence development project 'English in AU Administration'. This is to ensure that international students and staff receive the English language information and service from AU Administration they require in order to function at AU.

2013.11.18 | Vibe Abildtrup Middelboe

According to the guidelines for multilingual communication in AU Administration, students and staff must be able to work and study at Aarhus University even though they do not understand Danish. AU has therefore launched a project to ensure the translation of relevant texts from administration, as well as providing competence development for staff. The project will run from 2013-2014.

Most important texts translated first

Each administrative division is in the process of reviewing their texts and assessing where the greatest need for translation lies so that they can meet the needs of AU's international target group.

The translations are pooled and then translated either by AU Language Services or external translators.

"We have got off to a good start and have good cooperation with the contacts in each administrative division. We have focus particularly on the importance of not updating Danish information without getting the English updated, and that you must remember to specify in the English version of for example so-called 'rights and duties' texts that the Danish version prevails in cases of doubt," says MA in International Business Communication Annette Kvernrød, who is the project manager for the project.

English courses for staff in AU Administration

According to Annette Kvernrød, the guidelines for multilingual communication also mean that each individual staff member from AU Administration should always consider when translation is required. Should an invitation to a meeting be translated? Or a news item on the website?

The members of staff should also be able to provide non-Danish-speakers with the correct service. Part of the project therefore involves designing and holding English courses for staff from AU Administration.

The courses are tailored according to each individual department’s requirements. Once an administrative area registers its course participants, their level and specific requirements are established so that the course can be based on the actual work situation of the staff. The courses are held as half or whole day courses over a period of several weeks, depending on the department's wishes.

English courses are currently planned for employees in AU Research and Talent, AU Studies Administration and AU Communication, beginning in 2013.

User panel with non-Danish speakers

In addition to the above-mentioned initiatives, Annette Kvernrød is forming a user panel consisting of non-Danish speaking students and staff. A panel that will have direct influence on the project.

"I need direct input from users to ensure that we focus on the right areas in the project. The members of the user panel can give me examples of the language barriers that prevent them from functioning at AU, so I have the chance to clear some of those actual barriers out of the way," says Annette Kvernrød.

Facts

There are approximately 5,000 international students at AU. In addition there are approx. 480 foreign PhD students. Around 100 different nationalities are represented at AU.

Contact

Annette Kvernrød
Project Manager/Language Consultant
E-mail: ankve@adm.au.dk
Mobile: +45 2170 2774

See also

Staff, Frontpage
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