MET workshops

How human is your workflow? Critical AI use for language professionals

With machine translation, text analysers, paraphrasing tools and ChatGPT sweeping the world, the hype around artificial “intelligence” is louder than ever. But will these tools end up stealing our jobs?

By design, AI writing tools cannot replace the meaning-making and truth-evaluating faculties that writers, editors and translators apply to texts every day. Unable to understand social context, these tools have built-in biases and truth errors. While AI can enhance certain writing tasks, others central to writing’s function in society can only be achieved by humans.

So, how can you incorporate AI into your workflow effectively and appropriately, and keep writing human?

Facilitators: Elina Nocera, Theresa Truax-Gischler, Allison Wright

Purpose: To suggest ways language professionals can incorporate AI writing tools into their workflow ethically and effectively and keep writing human.

Description/structure: This workshop will reveal how meaning is never in the text but is always brought to it by humans.

After a short introduction to AI writing tools by Elina, Theresa will suggest ways language professionals can apply critical and ethical sociolinguistic approaches to their workflow as AI ethical best practices. Allison will then present her human-AI workflow in translating and editing conceptually dense texts for a culturally important publication, teasing out how her knowledge of non-narrative context and her critical use of AI tools achieved a uniquely human style. Participants will then apply skills learned to 1) create an ethical AI policy for their workflow and 2) edit a text using their uniquely human faculties and the paraphrasing tool QuillBot.

Who should attend? This workshop is for anyone who wants to use AI tools ethically to create better texts.

Outcome skills: Participants will have learned to
  • understand which writing tasks AI does well, does poorly and dangerously, or cannot do at all
  • integrate AI-based tools in their workflow ethically and effectively
  • free up time and mental space to focus on writing tasks that require human thought
  • find new angles and solutions to tricky problems

Preparation: Before the workshop, participants will be asked to complete an audit of AI tools they use in their work. Participants should bring a laptop onto which they have downloaded Microsoft Edge browser and sign in with their Microsoft account so they can use the Bing Chat function in the session. They should also explore QuillBot prior to the workshop:

About the facilitators: Elina Nocera is a bilingual Italian-English marketing translator and copywriter with 15 years of experience. She helps brands and service-based businesses connect with their audiences through compelling copy and a natural tone of voice. She specializes in design and lifestyle, media and entertainment, hospitality, culture and events.

Theresa Truax-Gischler is a developmental and substantive authors’ editor in the narrative social sciences and humanities working with multilingual writers. An enthusiast of cross-cultural and knowledge production and multimodal communication, she spends part of her life learning how to be a better disability ally. She lives in Leiden, Netherlands.

Allison Wright is a Portuguese, French and German to English translator and monolingual English editor who deftly crafts texts worthy of public scrutiny. She has spent the last decade of her 36 years’ experience steeped in Portuguese viticulture and the wine sector as well as corporate, historical and cultural matters.