Study

MA Interpreting & Translating

Qualifications and durations

  • Full-time MA 1 year (includes 3 months to submit dissertation)

Languages offered:

  • Chinese, French, German, Italian, Russian and Spanish
Pathways

Students may follow one of two possible paths:

  • Path 1: allows students with English as their ‘A’ language to offer two other languages - from Chinese, French, German, Italian, Russian and Spanish - working only into English.
  • Path 2: allows students to work in both directions between Chinese/English or Russian/English.

Overview

Mark Belcher talks about the course.

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This course is designed to prepare linguists for careers as professional interpreters and/or translators. It has done this most successfully over more than four decades, and graduates are to be found working in language services throughout the world.

All students follow a core course involving professional translation and simultaneous, consecutive and public and commercial service interpreting or liaison/public service interpreting. A number of options are available in the second semester to allow students to further focus on their translation or interpreting skills.

The MA is awarded for a 15,000-word dissertation/project submitted after successful completion of the taught course. 

Why study with us?

  • Team of highly experienced professional staff
  • State of the art digital interpreting suites provide excellent teaching and practice space.
  • Small class sizes provide high levels of student and teacher contact.
  • Work placements in interpreting and translating are often an option during the course and provide invaluable practical experience.
  • Motivated and multi-national student cohort offers a diverse and stimulating learning environment.
  • Students are exposed to realistic training from experienced translation and interpreting trainers which prepares them for work after graduation.
  • The University and city of Bath offer ample exposure for non-native students to the English language and culture of the UK.
  • A number of funding opportunities are available and students with EU languages are eligible to apply for EU bursaries.

Course structure

European Stream (French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish)

  • Consecutive interpreting (all year core unit)
  • Simultaneous interpreting (all year core unit)
  • Public speaking (Semester 1 option)
  • Professional translation I (Semester 1 core unit)
  • Professional translation II (Semester 2 core unit)
  • Public service and commercial interpreting (Semester 2 option)
  • Using technology in the T & I Industry (Semester 2 option)
  • Dissertation: 15,000 word thesis: annotated translation or a project type

Chinese Stream

  • Consecutive interpreting (all year core unit)
  • Simultaneous interpreting (all year core unit)
  • Liaison/Public service interpreting (all year core unit)
  • Public speaking (Semester 1 option)
  • Professional translation I (Semester 1 core unit)
  • Professional translation II (Semester 2 option)
  • Using technology in the T & I Industry (Semester 2 option)
  • Dissertation: 15,000 word thesis: annotated translation or a project type

View Programme & Unit Catalogue for further information.

Through our extensive network of contacts, we aim to organise placements for all students with the language services of international organisations, government departments or translation companies.

These placements provide an invaluable insight into the work of professional linguists and are valued highly by employers. They are not however compulsory and are not always guaranteed.

Our students have previously undertaken placements/internships in:

  • United Nations (New York, Geneva, and Vienna)
  • European Commission and European Parliament
  • Council of Europe

Learning and teaching

Our courses are modular, consisting of self-contained units, taught and assessed on a semester basis. As you progress through each semester and successfully pass the examinations, you will receive credit for the units, thus providing you with a clear indication of your academic progress.

Teaching takes the form of lectures and intensive translation and interpreting. Lectures are quite formal, whereas classes involve closer interaction between the lecturer and a small number of students for intensive training in the Translating & Interpreting discipline with plenty of time for informative discussion.

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We also use the software MemoQ for the delivery of the unit, Using Technology in the Translation & Interpreting Industry; this is one of the leading tools in the industry.

Methods of assessment

Assessment consists of a combination of class assignments and examination.

Careers

The MA Interpreting & Translating is a highly vocational course with a worldwide reputation for training professional translators and conference interpreters.

Our graduates have excellent employment prospects. While some have found rewarding jobs in smaller companies and institutions, or chosen to remain as a freelancer, many have gone on to pursue stimulating careers as professional translators and interpreters with major international organisations.

Graduates have worked for the following organisations:

Institutional markets

  • United Nations (Geneva, Vienna and New York)
  • European Commission (Brussels and Luxembourg)
  • European Parliament (Brussels and Luxembourg)
  • Council of Europe (Strasbourg)
  • International Court of Justice (The Hague)
  • NATO (Brussels)
  • Foreign and Commonwealth Office (London)
  • European Bank (Frankfurt)
  • BBC World Service (London)

Private markets

  • Microsoft
  • Talk Finance
  • Sophos
  • Prudential
  • Power Network
  • Gazprom

Some of our graduates have shared their experiences on our alumni blog.

Entry requirements for Path One

You should normally be a national of a majority English speaking country. We consider these countries to be majority English-speaking.

Other criteria may be applied on a case by case basis, such as bi-lingual ability.

You should contact the Admissions Office if you have any questions about your native, main, home or first language.

Academic requirements for Path One

Typically a 1st or 2:1 Honours degree (or its international equivalent).

Degree-level competence in two foreign languages (Chinese, French, German, Italian, Russian or Spanish).

Entry requirements for Path Two

You should normally be a national of a majority Chinese or Russian speaking country.

Academic requirements for Path Two

Typically a 1st or 2:1 Honours degree (or its international equivalent).

English language requirements for Path Two

  • IELTS 7.5 (with no less than 7.0 in the speaking component and no less than 6.5 in each of the reading, writing and listening components)
  • PTE Academic of 76 (with no less than 69 in the speaking component and no less than 62 in each of the reading, writing and listening components)

Certificates must be dated to within two years of the start of the course of study.

There is further information about meeting the English requirements.

References

Two references are required for both Path One and Path Two applications. At least one of these must be an academic reference.

How to apply

You can must apply to study through the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences Graduate School.

Financial information

Costs

  • Application Fee of £50, payable during the online application process.
  • Deposit of £250, payable upon receipt of an offer of a place to study (the deposit is offset against your course fees).
  • Tuition fees (2017/18 fees will be available early November 2016).
  • Estimated Living Expenses including a Sample Budget Guide.
  • Cost of attending voluntary placements, including travel, meals and accommodation.

Potential sources of funding

Application deadlines

Path One deadlines

The deadline for European stream applications is 30 June 2017.

Path Two deadlines

The deadline for Chinese stream applications is 31 January 2017 (If you wish to study on the Chinese stream do not apply for the European stream).

The deadline for the Russian stream is 30 June 2017.

Interviews

You will be further assessed for your suitability before acceptance to this course. You will be contacted regarding this process.

Path One interviews

European stream interviews will take place from February 2017 onwards.

Path Two interviews

Chinese stream interviews will take place in China during January 2017 and early Spring 2017.

Russian stream interviews will take place in the UK from February 2017 onwards.

Contact

Admissions Officer:
Email: polis-pgt-admissions@bath.ac.uk
Tel: +44 (0) 1225 38 3037

Related links

 

Experts from our department are publishing regularly in the most highly ranked international journals.

Our academic expertise and research activities are organised into three broad Research Clusters:

  • Conflict, Security & International Order
  • Governance, Citizenship & Policy
  • Memory, History & Identity

International collaboration

Many staff are internationally leading scholars in their field. We are involved in a wide range of research activities, including collaborative projects at both national and international levels.

Projects are funded by a variety of bodies such as:

  • Economics & Social Research Council (ESRC)
  • European Commission Framework Programme
  • Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

Stimulating cutting edge research

Our diversity and the disciplinary mix of political science, political theory, policy analysis, social anthropology, political sociology and others make for a very stimulating environment for students to develop their own research projects.

The integration of our research community is further enhanced through the International Relations & European Politics (IREP) postgraduate group.

 

The Department of Politics, Languages & International Studies (PoLIS) is one of the largest departments in the University.

Many staff are leading scholars in their field and are involved in a wide range of research activities, including collaborative projects at both national and international levels.

International and industrial links

  • Our department has links with 22 Erasmus partner institutions, as well as universities in Russia and Mexico.
  • Research students regularly engage in fieldwork abroad, especially in the countries of the European Union, but also in Russia, Latin America and the United States.
  • Students on the Euromasters programme study at two or three different sites in either Europe or the USA.
  • In the case of the MA Interpreting & Translating and the MA Translation & Professional Language Skills, a number of work placements in Western Europe are made available to students in the language services of international organisations, government departments and commercial enterprises.

Careers

Our graduate prospects have been consistently ranked among the best in the UK.

Our wide-range of programmes enables graduates to find employment in many different fields. Some examples include:

  • Diplomatic service
  • Media
  • Academia
  • International organisations
  • Multinational corporations
  • Policy-forming institutes
  • The language services of the United Nations and European Union

Many of our undergraduate programmes include a year abroad or placement year. These are highly valued by employers and will give you an edge in the competitive job market when you graduate.

Faculties

  • Specialist interpreting laboratories
  • Language laboratories
  • Online international TV streaming service
  • Self Access Language Centre (SALC)
  • European Community and European Union publications
  • Extensive local archive collections relating to research programmes in French and German politics
  • Departmental film library

Centres

Our Foreign Languages Centre offers a wide range of language courses at different level that students can also choose to follow.

The Academic Skills Centre (ASC) provides Academic English classes and support for international students.