TechWhiz: Sign Language Dictionary of Technical Terms for Education
Implementation period: 01.02.2022 – 31.07.2024 (30 months)
Project Website: https://techwiz.hmu.gr
“TechWhiz”, is a twenty-six month project, funded by the EC under KA2 Cooperation among organisations and institutions in HE, in the 2021 Call. The “TechWhiz” project aims to assist deaf students gaining access to education in their first language thus enhancing their learning experience. To address this goal the project will develop an online semi-automatic platform to create and search a glossary providing explanations of technical or scientific terms in Sign language.
“TechWhiz” addresses a concrete need faced by deaf students and teachers; the need to understand, and explain, unknown technical concepts to students who do not master spoken languages. Deaf people cannot read fluently. Sign languages and spoken languages are distinct. They have different channels, different phonology, different morphology and different grammar and arise from different cultures.
“TechWhiz” aims at assisting deaf students to gain equal access to education and enhance their learning experience. The specific objectives are: 1) to develop an online semi-automatic platform, to create, maintain and search a glossary, providing explanations of technical or scientific terms, in sign language; 2) to deploy a version of the glossary, for the study fields of Information Technologies and Electrical Engineering, in the partners’ sign languages (Portuguese, German, Slovenian and Greek sign languages); 3) to setup a course, to introduce new users, to the TechWhiz platform and its correct usage.
The 3 Project results are:
1) The TechWhiz Dictionary, an online glossary, where students can search for terms and find their explanation, provided in their own sign language, by a 3D avatar.
2) The TechWhiz Gloss Loader, a component of the TechWhiz platform that will be used to upload explanation, manually. Through the Gloss Loader, the registered users, are able to submit explanations for existing terms or submit new terms and their explanation.
3) The TechWhiz Studio, a component of the TechWhiz platform, through which sign language experts will be able to configure the 3D sign animations that are needed to produce the sign language explanations.
The Consortium of the project includes six partners: The Coordinator: Medidata.net - Sistemas de Informação Para Autarquias S.a, from Portugal and five partners:
1) INSTITUTO POLITECNICO DO PORTO - Portugal)
2) ELLINIKO MESOGEIAKO PANEPISTIMIO - Greece)
3) Universität Siegen - Germany)
4) UNIVERZA V MARIBORU - Slovenia)
5) European Association of Erasmus Coordinators - Cyprus)