Study Visit at Termcoord

April 23, 2019 10:05 am

As part of the Master “Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts” of the University of Luxembourg, the European Parliament in Luxembourg opens its doors to students curious to discover the work of the Terminology Coordination Unit (TermCoord). Determined to take advantage of this great opportunity, I signed up for a three-week internship with the Communication team of TermCoord.

My interest in terminology and translation was born during my Master 1 in 2017/2018 at the Universidade Nova in Lisbon where I enrolled in a terminology course. The lessons I received from Rute Costa (links to Termcoord articles: article 1; article 2) and Christophe Roche as well as the research work I had to produce to earn credits for the course, have aroused my curiosity in this field. In this context, I had chosen to work on the types of scarves and I analysed the different French terms by highlighting the semantic differences and/or similarities.
Then, when I started my current master course at the University of Luxembourg, I also had the opportunity to follow a course on the subject with different professionals from TermCoord of the European Parliament of Luxembourg.

Thanks to these two teaching modules, I have acquired some basic theoretical knowledge in terminology. Although I was a little confused by the density of information in terminology theory which I received, I have very much enjoyed the research work done in Lisbon, which is why I decided to look beyond the theory. Being able to do an internship in the European Parliament was a great opportunity to try to learn more about TermCoord’s day-to-day work,.
Despite a certain interest in terminology work and especially when it comes to identifying terms as unities of meaning, I have nevertheless decided to turn to the communication team because I consider that their tasks are more similar to those of my future professional projects.

During my internship, I was given several tasks, including writing articles. Indeed, I had the opportunity to write, among other things, an article on the term Degrowth in the “IATE Term of the Week” section, on the term Mirabelle in the “IATE Food Terminology” section. I also learned how to use adapted tools to publish an article and add photos and links. The Communication team offered me the opportunity to conduct an interview with a professional in terminology, translation or linguistics. I chose to interview Mrs Anne-Claude Berthoud, Professor of Linguistics at the University of Lausanne, because she studies subjects that interest me particularly: plurilingualism and language policy.

Even though I was on an internship to discover the work of the communication team, I also had the opportunity to see the work of the terminologists, being surrounded by interns from this unit.

I would recommend to those who have the opportunity to do this internship at TermCoord because the experience has been very positive for me. I greatly appreciated the friendliness of the team and the warm atmosphere that helped to put me at ease right away and in good conditions to discover and test my interests by performing various tasks. Moreover, the participation in the meetings of the communication team contributed to make me feel really involved in the different projects of the team, as if I were part of the permanent staff.

A big thank you to everyone for this great experience.


Written by Cécile Houzelles –  Study Visitor in Communication at the Terminology Coordination Unit of the European Parliament (Luxembourg) and student in the Master program in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts at the University of Luxembourg. She speaks French, English, Portuguese and she is learning German.

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