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This paper recounts and reflects upon the first two years of a project of transdisciplinary online collaboration involving a group of students studying journalism at Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), who are paired one-to-one with a group studying linguistics at Trinity College Dublin. Taking as its starting point the idea that most journalism urgently needs to improve the accuracy and depth of its science coverage, and the equally urgent idea that scientists need to improve their capacity to communicate clearly to a wide public, the project has seen the students working together to produce an accessibly written blog, The Multilingual Times, reporting on the latest peer-reviewed research in the field of multilingualism. By using a series of Google Drive folders and files to host the collaborative work, the instructors (the paper’s co-authors) are able to monitor students’ progress, address issues as they arise, and assess the contributions of each student to the finished blog-posts. The project is therefore, in additional to its other pedagogical facets, something of an experiment in using Google Apps and its online synchronous and asynchronous capacities to facilitate collaboration.
Browne, H., & De Angelis, G. (2016, November 2-6). The Multilingual Times: Breaking the Language Barrier Between Journalism and Science. Paper presented at the Higher Education in Transformation Symposium, Oshawa, Ontario, Canada. Retrieved from [hyperlink]