Major new EU funding for research aimed at removing language barriers to distance learning was announced today by a group comprising the Adapt Centre for Digital Content Technology at Dublin City University (DCU) and nine other European partners.
The TraMOOC (Translation for Massive Open Online Courses) consortium has won more than €3 million in funding as part of the Horizon 2020 Research & Innovation Framework Programme.
The three-year TraMOOC project will provide reliable machine translation for massive open online courses (MOOCs) from English into German, Italian, Portuguese, Greek, Dutch, Bulgarian, Czech, Croatian, Polish, Russian and Chinese.
TraMOOC’s research will develop systems for the automatic translation of various types of texts within MOOCs – from video lectures, assignments, tutorial text, to social media messages posted on MOOC blogs and forums.
The Irish team will work alongside collaborators from Belgium, Germany, Greece, The Netherlands, and the UK.
Deputy Director of the Adapt Centre and Professor of Computing at DCU Any Way will lead the Irish input into the project.
“These 11 languages were chosen as they constitute strong use cases, are hard to translate into and have limited existing machine translation resources on which to build,” said Prof Way. “By providing access in these languages, TraMOOC will open up online learning to potentially millions of new users, whose access to such resources is limited currently by language barriers.
“TraMOOC will address the needs of European and world citizens, who want access to open online education that is not constrained by language. The other big winners will be MOOC providers, who wish to offer high-quality, integrated multilingual educational services.”
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