Cooperative Learning in Teaching of Translation Using the Example of an Anthology of Paraguayan Fairy Tales


  • Marija Uršula Geršak University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Arts, Slovenia
  • Maja Šabec University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Arts, Slovenia



cooperative learning, translation, translation didactics, Spanish


The paper presents a successful attempt to introduce cooperative learning in the teaching of translation from Spanish into Slovenian in the master’s programme in Hispanic Studies at the Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana. The concrete example illustrates the transfer of the main theoretical starting points of this method to a specific group – 21 students taking the subject Translation – and the task or goal of learning, the translation of an anthology of Paraguayan fairy tales and its publication in book form.

The authors follow modern theories and methodologies of cooperative learning, which, in addition to cognitive processes, take into account emotions and motivation, build social competencies, encourage the active participation of learners, their interaction and the creation of new knowledge. In presenting the case, they focus on five essential features of this method (positive interdependence, individual and group responsibility, promoting direct interaction, social skills and group evaluation) and demonstrate that by describing the work, analysing the process and making findings based on practical work, the implemented project fully expresses these features, and at the same time connects them with other, more traditional teaching methods. In doing so, they emphasize and clearly illustrate the dynamics of strengthening the collaborative atmosphere during translation, first in pairs and small groups and then in the group of all participants. They find that the positive interdependence, connections and equal relationships among students, the collaborative group and the teacher contributed the most to the achievement of the goal. They draw attention to the special role of the teacher, who must create the conditions for participation, then observe and intervene only when necessary, otherwise working to promote the autonomy of individuals and group(s). The authors assess the experience of cooperative learning as an example of good practice that has a direct positive impact not only on learning concrete content and skills, but on life at all levels of society.


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How to Cite

Geršak, M. U. ., & Šabec, M. (2021). Cooperative Learning in Teaching of Translation Using the Example of an Anthology of Paraguayan Fairy Tales. Journal for Foreign Languages, 13(1), 553–570.