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Re: [Czechlist] THANKS TERM CS>EN: Odborna zkouska

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  • Josef Hlavac
    Thanks a lot to all who contributed, especially to Jamie s detailed comments. I appreciate your help. Josef
    Message 1 of 16 , Jul 13, 2010
      Thanks a lot to all who contributed, especially to Jamie's detailed
      comments. I appreciate your help.

      Josef

      James Kirchner wrote:
      > The systems among the countries are different, and as Valerie said, in the English-speaking countries we would be more likely to give the exams names that focus on their form, more than on their content.
      >
      > So you're not going to get equivalent terms without a good deal of distortion and misrepresentation.
      >
      > I'm all for making the terms as literal as possible, so that English speakers would understand what they are.
      >
      > For example, in my opinion "statni zaverecna zkouska" should be "state final examination", because as far as I know, its content and standards are to some degree set by the state. This distinction is important, because just a "degree examination" would not be so standardized, and the particular university or department would set the content and standards, making it as challenging or as Mickey Mouse as they want.
      >
      > "Obhajoba" would be "thesis defense", never just "defense", because it's not a martial arts exam or one on military tactics. But thank you for saying "thesis" and not "diploma work". :-)
      >
      > If the "odborna zkouska" is technical, then I agree with calling it a "technical examination". It does not sound like what you think it does, because the look-over that a mechanic gives a car is called a "technical INSPECTION", not a "technical examination".
      >
      > Your proposed translation of "odborna zkouska" also has a disadvantage in that it runs into the problem of "speciality" versus "specialty". It's hard to explain to Europeans how absolutely hilarious "speciality" sounds to North Americans, as opposed to "specialty". (And don't forget that we're two-thirds of the world's native speakers, so that means a lot of people will be laughing.) If you use "speciality" examination, your professors and legions of students will interact with the English-speaking world saying "spe-shee-a-li-ty", or even worse, "spe-see-a-li-ty", which will make them sound to two-thirds of us like circus ringmasters or funny chefs on cartoon shows. I am very serious about this. It's the kind of pronunciation that makes people look at the speaker and think, "Did he really say that?" and start listening to his language rather than what he's saying. So at all costs, do avoid that "speciality".
      >
      > Jamie
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