Who we are
The Language Documentation Training Center (LDTC) was initiated and is run entirely by graduate students in the Department of Linguistics at University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. Students work together to design the curriculum, schedule, recruitment, and other activities.
Our goals are to introduce basic concepts in language documentation to speakers of underdocumented languages, so that they will be able to document their own language. Native speakers spend a semester or more attending workshops on language documentation techniques, relevant computer software, and issues in documentation. All sessions are led by linguistics graduate students who are themselves interested in language documentation.
Each participant is paired up with a graduate student who acts as a mentor, guiding the participant through the workshops. Working together, they design a website that displays information about the participant’s language. At the end of the semester, these projects are presented to the community and uploaded to the Languages page of this website.
The mission of the LDTC is to train native speakers of underdocumented languages to work on the documentation of their own languages. The goals of the LDTC is to equip native speakers with basic skills in documentation, to offer them a public domain for making information about their languages accessible, and to inspire native speakers to become language advocates in their own communities.
We hope that the participants will re-discover their native language through different perspectives and spread their appreciation of their language and culture to others.
Selected academic publications about LDTC:
Ajo, Frances, Valerie Guerin, Ryoko Hattori, and Laura C. Robinson. 2010. Native speakers as documenters: a student initiative at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. In: Lenore A. Grenoble, and N. Louanna Furbee (eds.) Language Documentation: practices and values. John Benjamins Publishing, Philadelphia. 275-285.
Butler, Katie. 2011. Community-based website building: The Language Documentation Training Center’s approach to mentor-mentee partnership. Sustainable data from digital research: Humanities perspectives on digital scholarship.