Issues in the design, construction and use of Language Resources (LR) for Endangered Languages (ELs)


Monica Ward (School of Computer Applications Dublin City University, Dublin 9, Ireland)


WO7: LRs For Minority Languages


Growth in the development of Human Language Technologies (HLT) means that it is easier to document and archive languages than has been the case in the past. This is especially important in the Endangered Language (EL) context where it is imperative to document the language while its remaining speakers are still alive. This paper outlines the additional constraints that prevail when documenting languages in the EL context and how Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) development can help in language documentation exercises. It also highlights the importance of the management of the Language Resources (LR) once they have been procured, including the need to provide different access rights to the material depending on the EL community requirements. A forward looking, flexible technology is essential to ensure that current LR are not made obsolete by changes in technology and XML technologies offer a suitable platform in this regard. The paper presents a case study of the development of CALL materials for Nawat, an EL of El Salvador and the ensuing language documentation benefits that arose from the project.


Language resources

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