How we understand Terminology as a discipline, and its development

May 22, 2018 3:27 pm

Bihua Qiu, who works as a Senior Terminologist and Project Director at the China National Committee for Terms in Sciences and Technologies (CNCTST), has written an article entitled, “How we understand Terminology as a discipline, and its development“. This article is a summary of Canadian scholar Ángela Campo’s dissertation, “The Reception of Eugen Wüster’s Work and the Development of Terminology”. In the article’s conclusion, Qiu adds some new developments within the terminology field.


This article is a summary on the basis of a dissertation titled “The Reception of Eugen Wüster’s Work and the Development of Terminology” written by the Canadian scholar Ángela Campo. Meanwhile, in the end parts of this aritcle, the author also adds some new developments in the terminology field.
In the history of terminology,Eugen Wüster’s work, especially his general theory of terminology, has been an inspiration for terminology research studies. Nowadays, his is legacy is still considered the cornerstone in the field of terminology. Wüster is recognized as an important founding figure in modern terminology, as a pioneer of terminology standardization, and as the first author to propose a theory of terminology. In the early 1990s, new theoretical approaches to terminology have coped with advances in technology and science, these approaches have also identified new methods, methodologies, applications and uses for terminology. However, most of them seemed strongly to have held a critical attitude towards Wüster’s work,esp. his general theory of terminology. The debate around Wüster’s work gave birth to new theoretical and practical approaches to terminology development which gained momentum until today.
The “methodology of scientific research programmes” proposed by Lakatos (1978), applied as an interpretive model, demonstrates that terminology is now perceived as a research programme. In Lakatos’ terms, Terminology is becoming a stronger theoretical and descriptive discipline.

Keywords: Eugen Wüster, terminology, terminology approaches, general theory of terminology, standardization.

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