Lay the foundations for Bible translation by analysing the building blocks of the language

Many of the 1,600 languages where Bible translation is still needed do not yet have a written form. The majority have never been analysed or documented. In many cases, language communities are keen to see their language developed, but lack training and encouragement.

Working alongside members of a language community, a linguist will work towards:

  • The formation of local language committees, who will guide and promote language development
  • Identifying gifted mother-tongue speakers and training them to participate fully in the project
  • A thorough linguistic analysis of the sound system
  • A practical alphabet that is approved and accepted by the community
  • A detailed analysis of the grammatical system and language structure, which will help translators produce high-quality translation
  • A language database, often leading to a more fully developed dictionary

We give training for linguistic fieldwork at the School of Language and Scripture. Applicants for linguistic work are usually – but not always – educated to degree level and have well-developed analytical abilities. Some will have a background in linguistics or languages, but we also welcome enquiries from those who have studied mathematics or any other analytical subject.