Translating Courses into Inuktitut Languages

A project I’ve been working on over the past three years is on government procurement for Nunavut businesses (how to sell products and services to governments). It involved translating courses into Inuktitut languages. It’s been a fascinating project from the beginning, and especially interesting when we got into the stages of translation. The client needed the course translated from English into three Inuktitut dialects (Kivalliq, North Baffin, and South Baffin) plus Inuinnaqtun.

Inuinnaqtun uses the Roman alphabet, like English. But the Inuktitut languages use syllabics. I needed to download the Pigiarniq syllabic font from Inuktitut Computing and install it.

The text labels would need to be translated (for the player controls and messages), so I downloaded the Excel spreadsheet from the Articulate Community for the translators.

The project manager handled getting the translations done. It wasn’t an easy task, as there are not many translators available, and all are very busy. Once the translations were done, I imported them into the Storyline courses for each language.

Next, since Storyline doesn’t have these text labels available as built-in languages (like it does for French, Spanish, and a couple dozen languages), I needed to convert the translated Excel spreadsheet into an XML file. This was then uploaded into Storyline, so the text labels were in the correct language and dialect.

As with any translated course materials, the content had to be thoroughly checked to ensure everything fit and looked good.

Working on the Inuktitut South Baffin dialect translations in Articulate Storyline:Working on the Inuktitut South Baffin dialect translations in Articulate Storyline.

The courses were also professionally narrated. Again, this step took some time. The course was a couple hours long, so a big job for any narrator. We had an easier time once we found a recording studio in Nunavut with access to local speakers.

I was happy to work on this project because it allowed me to learn new skills that I can bring to future projects. The client was extremely pleased with the results and that the valuable information was available in their local languages.

The Inuktitut South Baffin dialect course title page as viewed by a learner:

The Inuktitut South Baffin dialect course title page as viewed by a learner.

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