I like having the short term names display in the left tabs. But I wish there was a way to control the term name display in the main channel on the subterm overview landing page. There they function as headers for each section in my 3-column post. There is more width available there, and it's useful to give more detail about each section.
Here is an example: http://arts.ucdavis.edu/theatre-dance-people . The full term for TAs and AIs, for example, is "Theatre & Dance Teaching Assistants and Associate Instructors." Ideally I would put "Teaching Assistants and Associate Instructors" as the term on the 3-column subterm overview page.
I wonder if what you're asking for would be possible by instead using a different template where the titles were drawn from overviews of those subordinate sections instead of using the term names themselves. I've been in communication with a few team members about this and it might be possible.