The Training Programme

The DLDP training programme will be created to support the long-term maintenance of Europe’s regional and minority languages through the fostering of their digital presence. This innovative training programme will be available to those speakers of regional and minority languages who want to know why and how to increase the presence of their languages online and how to do it practically: which tools and techniques are available, which media are more suitable, which aspects need to be addressed first.

The programme will be modular - each module will address one or more particular levels of digital capacity, as defined by the tool developed within the 'digital language survival kit' - and will be an interactive instantiation of the measures for increasing the digital survival capacity, as identified within the 'kit' itself.

The modules will reflect the various steps to be taken either before an under-represented language is used online and after it starts to be used, in terms of the various contexts in which it is possible and most urgent/profitable to use the language.

A first module will concern languages with specific technical barriers, such as the orthography, the lack of technical translations and even a lack of a standard writing system in predominantly oral societies. Other modules will address less severe grades of digital under-representation, assuming that a language already has the basic tools for typing and writing. These more advanced modules will teach people easy and effective ways of increasing the digital presence of a language: for instance, to create Wikipedia articles, to tweet in a regional or a minority language and engage with other tweeters, to create a Facebook page or group and use this group creatively to stabilize orthography, to engage in language games etc.

Although the precise structure of the training programme will be defined after the project’s start, we foresee at least the following topics, each of them will be recommended for one or more specific levels of digital capacity:

  • overcoming of intellectual barriers: why is it important for a language to be digital;
  • overcoming of technical barriers;
  • creation of textual material;
  • creation of audio material: podcasts, Web radio, YouTube channels;
  • regional and minority languages and Social Media: Facebook pages and groups, Twitter, how to build and enlarge a social community;
  • how to bring others on our side: software and interfaces localization projects;
  • edutainment: e-books, videogames etc.

JGU will be responsible for planning and designing the structure of the training programme; all other partners will contribute to its content in their respective expertise, and with help of external consultants when needed.

The solutions proposed will include suggestions at the individual, community, and regional/national levels, and will range from simple actions to be taken to more complex initiatives requiring the coordination of groups of interested speakers (for instance, for volunteering in the creation of technical terminology) practical, immediately applicable suggestions to initiatives that need the support of a community of people.

The programme will consist of a mixture of reading material and practical activities, for which adequate introduction and technical support will be provided.

The training programme will not assume any previous experiences or special skills, apart from basic ones such as the ability to type and access the Internet.

The activities related to this output will take place between M9 and M34, and they can be summarized as follows:

A2.1 - Training programme design and preparation; definition of modules (M9-10);
A2.2 - Development of modules: preparation of the material and activities (M11-M18);
A2.3 - Preliminary testing of the programme (M19);
A2.4 - Refinement of the programme on the basis of testing results (M20-25);
A2.5 - Second testing (M26);
A2.6 - Refinement of the programme on the basis of testing results (M27-30);
A2.7 - Preparation of supporting resources for individual study (M20-30);
A2.8 - Training of trainers: representatives of speakers’ communities who are interested in becoming instructors of the DLDP training programme will receive an introductory explanation. (M31);
A2.9 - Training of learners: an instantiation of the training course will be offered to individual speakers of Basque, Breton, Karelian and Sardinian (M34).

The people taking part in this programme will also learn to share their skills with other people in their own communities and organisations, thus becoming drivers of a digital expansion of their language. A network of subscribers to the programme will be created in order to share ideas, experiences, and advice.

Apart from the languages listed below, the companion material will be made available in Breton, Karelian and Sardinian.