The semi-bilingual approach to lexicography for foreign language learners was innovated by Lionel Kernerman, a prominent English Language Teaching publisher in Israel. The first dictionary appeared in 1986 for Hebrew speakers (based on Oxford Student’s Dictionary of Current English), followed by Arabic in 1987 (based on Harrap’s Standard English Learner’s Dictionary).
These ground-breaking titles were greeted enthusiastically, and both were approved by the Ministry of Education – first for secondary-school intermediate-level learners, then for the upper level too. After further testing and first-hand experience, since 1996 only the semi-bilingual type is permitted for use in the classroom and in examinations – including the final matriculation.
Encouraged by success at home, Kernerman Publishing began to cooperate with publishers abroad on local language versions. Italian, Greek and French editions appeared in 1989, and many others in the 1990s. In 1993, Password Publishers was established to coordinate the growing dictionary network worldwide. Altogether, about 50 titles have been published so far, and more are in preparation. In 2000, the company and global series were renamed K Dictionaries.
Today, we focus on developing state-of-the-art didactic-lexicographic content for various levels and media, and help our partners put their dictionaries together and promote them. Each publisher contributes their know-how on the local language, culture, and education system, as well as on relevant production and marketing aspects. The result of each collaboration is a customer-oriented product created especially for a specific end-user – a unique dictionary.
In this process, extra data is prepared to suit local specifications. For instance, our team compiled hundreds of new entries for the Norwegian edition – such as relating to snow, single-parent families, and othe issues of special interest – and the publisher added new supplements on arts and sports. The Korean edition, also published in 1998, has additional entries from the syllabus of the Ministry of Education, as well as new appendices on prefixes and suffixes or on historical figures and world events.
In 2001 we started – with our publishing partners – new types of cooperation with information and communication technology firms, diversifying the K Dictionaries series into a range of computerized formats – for CD, OEM, PDA, e-learning, cellphone, the Internet and intranets. These ventures begin to flourish in 2002 – including notably the super-multilingual GlobalDix by Kielikone, the Socrat titles by Arsenal, and the English Discoveries Online course by Edusoft.
The unique features of our dictionaries promise more exciting projects in the future.
K Dictionaries Ltd