Multidisciplinary terminological system: from word to discourse

Multidisciplinary terminological system: from word to discourse

Natalia Zhabo, associate professor of the Department of Foreign Languages at RUDN Agrarian and Technological Institute, presented the author's theoretical and applied concept of multidisciplinary term systems to the linguistic community of the RUDN University.

The seminar was held in French at the Department of Foreign Languages ​​of RUDN Agrarian and Technological Institute with the participation of representatives of the Department of Foreign Languages ​​of RUDN and MPSU.

The research issue responds to the demands of modern multilingual scientific communication, which is implemented in the context of the development of a single information space, which determines the relevance of both theoretical research of terminological systems and the applied use of the results in the practice of teaching a foreign language as the language of the future profession.

The development of interdisciplinary research determines the need for not only selection and theoretical study of terms for a specific industry specialization, which is traditional for linguistics, but also requires methods for students to master multidisciplinary terminological systems related to the professional activities of future specialists.

The speaker presented theoretical and applied concept of multidisciplinary term systems based on the classical postulates of general linguistics (Yu. Apresian, W.Weinreich, and others), linguistic typology (V. von Humboldt, V.Ghak, S. Terekhova, etc.), terminology (K.Averbukh and others), translation studies (V.Komissarov, R. Palazhchenko, etc.). At the same time the author formulated a new research task and identified its practical value: identifying the necessary and sufficient corpus of terms from various disciplines for further integration of the obtained language data into the practice of teaching a foreign language as a specialty language.

 “The task of the study predetermines the author's criteria for the selection of empirical material, which includes the terms of French and Russian from various industries - ecology, agriculture, medicine, politics and business. In the applied aspect, the corpus of multidisciplinary terminological systems provides a lexical and semantic basis for teaching a foreign language as a specialty language in the context of the development of an interdisciplinary focus of scientific and practical activities of a specialist, ” said Natalia Zhabo.

The expert demonstrated the possible ways of using the designed corpus of multidisciplinary term systems in the practice of learning a foreign language as a specialty language.

Seminar participants were presented with a student video project in French “Production of organic soap with lavender at home”. The speaker drew the attention of those present to the way students use different terms in the video, including:

  • terms of history and archaisms (medicinal plants, Middle Ages, Ancient Egypt, drug, fragrance, pharmacopoeia),
  • terms of medicine (lipids, essence, essential oils, herbal tea, powder, tincture, animal fat, sea salt),
  • agricultural terms (walnut, rape, clove flax),
  • general scientific terms (capsule, physico-chemical, sodium),
  • highly specialized terms of cosmetic skin medicine (sensitive skin, mixed skin, oily skin, nose, forehead, chin, cheeks, temples, T-zone, blemishes, black spots, sebum, greasy canal, acne)
  • pharmaceutical terms (coconut oil, sorbitol, tetrasodium, glycolic acid),
  • pseudoscientific terms tracing (organic soap, vegetable glycerin), adopted in advertising texts.

Students could use heterogeneous foreign language terms in the context of a specific presentation on professional issues due to the teachers’ preliminary scientific and methodological work, like defining a list of terminological systems, a list of relevant terms of each system, studying their intra-language relationships (rules of education and usage in various communication contexts).

“Such activity is long and systematic work of a teacher, often it requires the cooperation of a team of teachers. A confirmation of this and an example of testing the methodology of Natalia Zhabo is a textbook “Landscape Architecture and Horticulture of the 21st Century: Challenges and Requirements of Time: the French language”, which was prepared by the authors of the ATI Foreign Languages ​​Department – N.Zhabo, M.Avdonina and E.Notina. This textbook was developed on the basis of a corpus approach to processing multidisciplinary terminological systems and integrates scientific and practical materials on various aspects of landscape architecture and gardening, for example, on the economics of farming, paperwork, psychological and legal aspects of business", said Elena Notina, Head of the ATI department of foreign languages ​.

“The proposed concept is certainly interesting, in theoretical terms, it allows you to study how the association of terminology of various industries is formed on the basis of knowledge bases in scientific discourse” - Olga Sheremetyeva, lecturer in the Foreign languages ​​department of the Law Institute.

“Conceptualization and systematization of multidisciplinary terms are certainly in demand in the applied aspect, for professionally oriented linguodidactics, since they allow implementing an interdisciplinary approach to creating a lexical and sematic basis for teaching a foreign language as a specialty language”.


Natalya Zhabo, Associate Professor of the Foreign Languages ​​Department of the Institute of Foreign Languages, defended her PhD thesis “Eco-Terminological System of French and Russian Languages: Structure, Semantics, Features and Methods of Translation” in the specialty 10.02.20 - Comparative, typological and comparative linguistics.

In a report at the seminar of the Commission of the Scientific Council of the RUDN University in Foreign Languages, the materials of Chapter 1 of Natalia Zhabo’s doctoral thesis “Multidisciplinary Term Systems: Conceptualization, Functioning, Research Methodology (based on French, English and Russian)” were tested.

Tags: education