Investigating multilingual(s') writing processes
Ehrensberger-Dow, Maureen (2010). Investigating multilingual(s') writing processes. In: Heather Graves; Roger Graves (Hg.). Interdisciplinarity: Thinking and Writing Beyond Borders. Proceedings from the 25th Conference of the Canadian Association of Teachers of Technical Writing. (59-82). Edmonton: CASDW.
Producers of technical and academic texts in Switzerland must be able to move comfortably between languages, perhaps processing source information in English and synthesizing, writing, and/or translating it for an English-, German- or French-speaking audience. The conventional distinctions between translating, technical and academic writing, and editing have become blurred as people with different educational backgrounds are expected to handle various text production tasks. The questions of how they do this, what resources they access and incorporate into their writing processes, and which strategies they use to obtain the quality required for a particular job within the time available are addressed in this paper. A multi-method approach to investigating multilinguals' writing processes allows comparisons across different types of language tasks (e.g. technical writing, translation, revision, editing), texts (e.g. academic, technical, marketing, financial), and language versions (e.g. first/native or second/non-native language). Extracts of writing processes from multilingual students in an English academic writing course are analyzed and presented as examples of an application of this approach.