Al-Kīmiyā-Call for Papers for Issue Number 19-Languages and Translation: Cognitive Challenges

deadline for submissions: 
October 15, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Université Saint-Joseph de Beyrouth
contact email: 

Al-Kīmiyā - Journal of the Faculté de langues et de traduction (FdLT)

Université Saint-Joseph de Beyrouth

Call for Papers for Issue Number 19

Given the circumstances in recent months due to the Covid-19 crisis, the conference organized by the Faculté de langues et de traduction (FdLT - Faculty of Languages and Translation) and its institutions, which was scheduled for April 2020, has been canceled. The theme of this conference will be taken up in the form of articles to be published in our journal.

Therefore, the theme chosen for Issue 19 of Al-Kīmiyā, is: "Languages and Translation: Cognitive Challenges"

The aim is to bring together reflections on the links between cognitive processes and language teaching/learning and translation/interpretation. These links have acquired great importance today especially that the inevitable shift to distance education represents a real challenge in these disciplines.

Arguments and Axes of Research

For decades, research in cognitive sciences has been focusing on learning processes by examining the phenomenon of brain plasticity. Progress achieved turns out to be real and unavoidable nowadays. The basic learning principles, or what Stanislas Deheane calls the pillars of learning, are well defined and require adaptation, reassessment, if not a revolution of teaching practices. This is even becoming more urgent at the time of the “digital tsunami” (Emmanuel Davidenkoff) that has transformed the learner profile. In fact, the needs of learners have changed: they have their own ways to access knowledge, their rhythm and attention capacities are not the same anymore, and their intellectual curiosity is affected. In the face of the growing stakes and challenges, teachers must inevitably adapt their approaches towards the learners.


Teaching languages and translation/interpretation is no exception. The cognitive aspects of learning and acquisition of skills must be taken into consideration in this kind of teaching: optimizing attention and memory, soliciting active involvement by arousing the learners’ curiosity, admitting making mistakes as an inevitable path towards acquisition, consolidating learning by spaced repetition, taking into consideration external factors such as sleep, emotion, and physical and cognitive ergonomics… This is a non-exhaustive list of the influencing factors which, if better understood, would encourage teachers to adapt their class management in view of promoting the different skills they wish the students to acquire in terms of languages and translation/interpretation. In this regard, the papers would reflect on the methods that are already used in teaching languages and translation/interpretation and on their theoretical bases in order to see to what extent the cognitive factors are taken into consideration and whether the scientific achievements confirm or refute some practices.


However, in the case of both fields in question, it is not the learning processes solely that should be understood, but also the cognitive processes involved in the performance of the final tasks to be accomplished. Descriptive research works have been multiplying for decades now and have been concerned with the translation and interpretation processes, as well as the linguistic operations such as bilingualism or multilingualism in light of cognitive sciences. In fact, translating, interpreting, speaking or writing are per se specific cognitive acts. Research works deal inter alia with issues of interference, cognitive load, attention, memory, decision making, inhibition of erroneous reasoning, aautomatisms, etc. These cognitive factors are studied in the phase of understanding and grasping of the meaning and that of production. The results of these research studies certainly have indirect implications on the planning of programs and learning curricula, as well as on teaching methods. Reflection on research methodologies would also be beneficial for the progress of these research works.


The two axes of research are:

1-      Cognitive aspects in learning and acquisition of skills in languages or translation/interpretation.

2-      Cognitive aspects in descriptive research (conceptual and empirical) in languages or in translation/interpretation.


Researchers wishing to submit their contribution are requested to send it to the following address:, before October 15, 2020.

Indicative References

Davidenkoff, E. (2014). Le tsunami numérique, éducation : tout va changer! Êtes-vous prêts? Paris, France: Stock

Dehaene, S. (2018). Apprendre! Les talents du cerveau, le défi des machines. Paris, France : Odile Jacob

Fuchs, C. (2011).  Les langues au carrefour de la cognition. La Clé des langues [en ligne], Lyon, ENS de LYON/DGESCO (ISSN 2107-7029). Repéré à

Houdé, O. (2017). Apprendre à résister. Paris, France : Le Pommier

Lavault-Olléon, E. (2011). L’ergonomie, nouveau paradigme pour la traductologie. ILCEA, 14. DOI : 10.4000/ilcea.1078

Moukheiber, A. (2018). Votre cerveau vous joue des tours. Paris, France : Allary Éditions

O’brien, S. (eds). (2011). Cognitive Explorations of Translation. London / New York: Continuum International Publishing Group

Plevoets, K., & Defrancq, B. (2018). The cognitive load of interpreters in the European Parliament. A corpus-based study of predictors for the disfluency uh (m). Interpreting20(1), 1–28.

Schwieter, J W. & Ferreira, F (eds). (2014). The Development of Translation Competence: Theories and Methodologies from Psycholinguistics and Cognitive Science. Cambridge Scholars publishing

Sutter, G De. Lefer, M-A & Delaere, I. (eds). (2017). Empirical Translation Studies. New Methodological and Theoretical Traditions. Berlin, Germany: De Gruyter






Al-Kīmiyā is a journal published by the Faculté de Langues et de traduction (FdLT) of the Université Saint-Joseph de Beyrouth (USJ).




Founded in 2001-2002 under this name from the annals of the Institut de langues et de traduction (ILT), Al-Kīmiyā publishes mainly research papers in the fields of translation, interpretation and languages particularly, translation, terminology, history of translation, intercultural communication, translation teaching, language teaching and language sciences.


It is a biannual, multilingual journal receiving original articles in French, Arabic, English, Spanish, Italian and German. Each issue includes a thematic section focused on a specific subject that may be common to the specific disciplines of translation and languages, a Varia section and a reviews section of recent books published in the fields covered by the journal.




Al-Kīmiyā is a space for reflection giving the floor to researchers, instructors, PhD students and professionals in translation and language.




Type of publication: hard copy


ISSN: 2410-3128


Online :




Scientific Board




Bert Barry (Saint Louis University- USA)


Christian Balliu (ISTI- Université Libre de Bruxelles-Belgium)


Enrico Monti (Université de Haute Alsace- France)


Gina Abou Fadel Saad (FdLT- Université Saint-Joseph de Beyrouth, Lebanon)


Hannelore Lee-Jahnke (Former Director of ETI, FTI- Université de Genève-Switzerland)


Jean Soubrier (Université Lumière Lyon 2-Professor Emeritus-France)


Julio Murillo (Universitat  Autónoma de Barcelona-Spain)


Marianne Lederer (ESIT- Université Sorbonne Nouvelle-Paris3-Professor Emeritus-France)


May Hobeika Haddad (FdLT- Université Saint-Joseph de Beyrouth, Lebanon)


Nadine Riachi Haddad (FdLT- Université Saint-Joseph de Beyrouth, Lebanon)


Nicolas Froeliger (Université Paris Diderot-Paris7-France)


Stéphanie Schwerter (Université Polytechnique- Hauts-de-France- France)




Editor-in-chief:May Hobeika Haddad


Editorial Policy


Calls for contributions for the thematic section are launched twice a year. However, contributions dealing with various and original issues may be received at any time of the year for possible publication in the Varia section.

Al-Kīmiyā only accepts original, unpublished articles not submitted to another journal. Plagiarism results in an automatic rejection of the article.


All contributions are subject to an evaluation process:

  1. The authors send their text by email including:
  • The title of the contribution
  • Two abstracts of the article: one in the language of the article and the other in English, 600 to 800 characters each
  • 3 to 5 keywords in both languages of the abstracts
  • The text:
    • The article: 25000 to 35000 characters (with spaces)
    • The book review: 7000 to 10000 characters (with spaces)  
  • Biobibliographic note of the author (500 to 800 characters)
  1. The article is first examined by the editor-in-chief and then submitted to a double-blind peer review by two experts of the reading committee.
  2. The experts complete and sign a form giving their opinions and recommendations.
  3. Authors are notified of the results of the evaluation within 6 weeks and can make the requested changes within 20 to 30 days.
  4. The manuscript is reviewed by the editorial committee and possibly by a third expert.
  5. The final decision taken by the editorial committee is transmitted to the author.


The members of the reading committee are clearly listed on each issue published.






The editors will take care of the styling of the articles. However, authors are requested to respect the following formal instructions:

- Font: Times New Roman, Title: 14 points in bold (in capital letters). Name of the author: 10 points, name followed by the academic title and function. Abstract: 10 points. Text: 12 points with single spacing. Footnotes: 10 points. For Arabic texts: Simplified Arabic. Title: 16 points in bold. Name of the author: 12 points, name followed by the academic title and function. Abstract: 12 points. Text: 14 points with single spacing. Notes: 10 points.

- The keywords (3 to 5) are separated by a comma.

- Headings are marked in bold at the beginning of the paragraph.

- Short quotations (less than 3 lines) in the body of the text between inverted commas, long quotations indented in 10 points.

- The bibliographical references in the body of the text follow the norms: (Name of the author, date, page)

- Footnotes, numbered on each page, are reserved for substantial comments and additional information.

- The bibliography placed at the end of the article follows the APA style, 6th edition. References must be romanized. The journal adopts the ALA-LC (American Library Association- Library of Congress) rules: