Course Overview

Attendance
UK/EU Fees £9,000 *
International Fees £15,000 *
Alumni Discount See details
Duration 1 year

* Price per academic year

Course summary

The Translation and Interpreting MA is open to native and non-native speakers of English, who combine English with any of the following languages: Chinese, French, German, Italian, Polish, or Spanish. The course will provide you with extensive professional training aimed at the translation and interpreting markets, building on your existing language skills to develop a career in those sectors.

The course involves translation as well as conference and public service interpreting between one main language (Chinese, French, German, Italian, Polish, or Spanish) and English. You will learn how to research specialised subjects for professional translation and interpreting purposes and hone your translation and interpreting skills by extensive practice, applying insights drawn from linguistics and translation and interpreting theory as well as from professional practice. You will also engage with a comprehensive programme of professional development activities and will further complement the knowledge and skills acquired on the core modules by choosing either Translation as Cultural Practice or International Liaison as an option module. At the end of the course, you will submit an MA Interpreting Project, an MA Translation Project, or an MA Thesis.

You will be able to benefit from our wide range of resources, including an extensive collection of volumes and electronic materials in our library, a state-of-the-art language lab and extensive conference interpreting facilities, and additional resources made available through the University's Virtual Learning Environment. Our teaching staff includes full and part-time lecturers, all with expertise in translation and interpreting and in other specialist fields. You will be allocated a personal tutor and be given academic guidance by the course team.

The course emphasis is on practical training in translation and interpreting, developing your skills to a high level and learning about the professional environments. Your core Specialised Translation modules will involve both direct and inverse translation training between English and Chinese, French, German, Italian, Polish or Spanish. The majority of your translation assessments, including the final translation exam, will, however, be conducted into your mother tongue only. All students will translate institutional texts (such as economic, political, legal and EU/UN texts) and technical material, and acquire a wide range of additional skills, including career building and professional development skills, through the remaining core and option modules.

You will also study conference and public service interpreting, into and out of English, in your core Interpreting modules, and acquire a range of additional skills, including career building and professional development skills, through the remaining core and option modules.

You will complete a research-based MA Thesis or an MA Translation or Interpreting Project. Your studies are further supported by regular student-led interpreting practice sessions and mock conferences, weekly lectures on the theoretical concepts and principles of translation and interpreting, introductory workshops to a range of translation memory tools, guest lectures and workshops delivered by external speakers from industry and international institutions, and the opportunity to take part in a post-graduation mentoring programme.

Course structure

The following modules are indicative of what you will study on this course.

To help you make an informed decision, you can have a look at how marks have been calculated and study time has been distributed on this course in the past.

Core modules

These modules centre on developing your skills in public service interpreting as well as in formal conference scenarios in both consecutive and simultaneous interpreting modes. Over the course of the year, you will build skills in areas such as information transfer, formal and informal speech, body language and voice, etiquette, glossary building, concentration, memory, message analysis and split attention, as well as familiarise yourself with note-taking techniques in dialogue and consecutive interpreting, and develop the complex multi-tasking skills required for public service, consecutive, and booth-based simultaneous interpreting in professional contexts.

On these modules, you will be introduced to specialist texts of the kind you will be expected to handle in a professional context. These will cover international and government institutions, economics, finance, business, politics and law, as well as technical and scientific fields such as medicine, pharmacology, engineering, IT, technical product development and the full range of natural and applied sciences. While you will be trained to translate specialised material both into and out of your mother tongue, the focus of assessment on both of these modules primarily lies on ‘direct’ (into mother tongue) translation. During the first semester, you will also attend introductory workshops to a range of translation memory tools, providing you with a basis for performing computer-assisted translation tasks.

This module offers a range of seminars and workshops designed to prepare you for your working lives as translators and interpreters, either in-house or freelance, and is delivered by both academic staff and external speakers with expert knowledge and relevant experience in a range of industry-relevant fields.

Workshops include, for example, marketing yourself as a freelance translator or interpreter, ethics and professionality, working for international organisations, continuing professional development and working for agencies. The skills, concepts and knowledge that support future employability and reflective practice will be addressed from both a conceptual and practical standpoint.

The MA Interpreting Project is an extended piece of work of 12,000 - 15,000 words, which aims to help you reflect on and apply theoretical models to your practice as a trainee interpreter. It consists of an analysis on your own performance in fulfilling an interpretation task from initial research and glossary building, text analysis, and giving an interpretation, to a final evaluation of the interpreting quality. Preparation for the project will be provided in a series of workshops throughout the year.

Alternatively, you can do an MA Translation Project, a 6,000 - 8,000-word extended translation of a text of your choice, accompanied by a preface and a set of annotations on the translation challenges involved. Preparation for writing the preface and annotations will be provided by a series of lectures throughout the course.

You can also choose to do an MA Thesis. This is a piece of scholarly research, 12,000 - 15,000 words long, on a translation- or interpreting-related topic. In preparation for writing your Thesis, you will attend regular research methodology and work-in-progress sessions.

Regardless of your choice of Project or Thesis, you will receive individual supervision and attend weekly Principles and Concepts of Translation and Interpreting lectures.

Option modules

This module considers current theories and practices of information processing, communication and interpretation and their relevance to global co-operation. It provides the knowledge and competencies needed to operate successfully in multi-cultural environments and examines, simulates and critically evaluates the techniques and strategies required to facilitate global bilingual / lingua franca advocacy and collaboration. It covers issues such as framing and reframing, active listening, and metacommunication. It also examines the ethical dimensions and challenges of international liaison.

This module examines the ways in which translation, conceived as a cultural practice, can be understood within diverse linguistic, social, professional and historical contexts.

It invites you to consider not only the immediate cultural implications of translating between two cultural contexts, but also interrogates the notion that translators are culturally neutral or independent of the processes in which they engage. The concept of cultural practice is also investigated by looking inwards towards the professional contexts of translation in different societies over history, examining the cultures of the translation profession and how these cultures have impacted on the practice of translation.

The module seeks to provide the conceptual underpinning that equips students with critical reflective insight into their own translation practice through exploring a range of culturally inflected texts and textual practices, both written and oral.

Professional recognition

The University of Westminster is a Higher Education Language partner of the Chartered Institute of Linguists, member of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting, the Conférence Internationale permanente d’Instituts Universitaires de Traducteurs et Interprètes (CIUTI), Elia Exchange, and the UN MoU Network, a group of international signatories to a memorandum of understanding with the United Nations on cooperation in the training of language professionals for the UN language competitive examinations.

Entry Requirements

Typical offer

You should have a good first degree in modern languages or another subject, although mature linguists without a degree but with sufficient experience in translation and/or interpreting are also invited to apply. All applicants take an entry test consisting of written and oral components. If you are successful in the entry tests, we will interview you in person or on the telephone to determine if the Translation and Interpreting MA is right for you. The course is open to native speakers of Chinese, English, French, Italian, Polish, and Spanish.

You will need fluent written and spoken English and, if English is not your first language, an IELTS score of 6.5 overall (with 7 in speaking). Most successful applicants will have met the IELTS requirement when they submit their application as excellent English language skills are fundamentally important. It is vital that all applicants who do not have English as their first language provide clear details on their application form of the English language qualifications they have achieved and/or the date when they will be taking their IELTS test.

Please note: the January entry iteration of this course is only available to native Chinese speakers. The September entry iteration is available to all language combinations on offer, including Chinese.

View more information about our entry requirements and the application process.

Typical offer

You should have a good first degree in modern languages or another subject, although mature linguists without a degree but with sufficient experience in translation and/or interpreting are also invited to apply. All applicants take an entry test consisting of written and oral components. If you are successful in the entry tests, we will interview you in person or on the telephone to determine if the Translation and Interpreting MA is right for you. The course is open to native speakers of Chinese, English, French, Italian, Polish, and Spanish.

You will need fluent written and spoken English and, if English is not your first language, an IELTS score of 6.5 overall (with 7 in speaking). Most successful applicants will have met the IELTS requirement when they submit their application as excellent English language skills are fundamentally important. It is vital that all applicants who do not have English as their first language provide clear details on their application form of the English language qualifications they have achieved and/or the date when they will be taking their IELTS test.

Please note: the January entry iteration of this course is only available to native Chinese speakers. The September entry iteration is available to all language combinations on offer, including Chinese.

More information

Careers

The Translation and Interpreting MA has an excellent graduate employment record. Many of our graduates have developed careers as in-house or freelance translators in the corporate sector and in international organisations such as the United Nations and the European Commission, or as freelance interpreters in the public and private sector.

Other graduates work as project or vendor managers within the language industry, or as subtitlers, editors, revisers, proofreaders, or terminologists.

Our membership of the European Graduate Placement Scheme and Elia Exchange ensures that we can assist our students in securing high-quality work placements both during the course and following graduation. We are also a member of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting and have a Memorandum of Understanding with the United Nations on cooperation in the training of language professionals for the UN language competitive examinations.

Our Career Development Centre has just been shortlisted for the Best University Careers Service in the National Undergraduate Employability Awards for 2017.

With a growing network of over 3,000 employers around the world and a team of experienced careers consultants, we are here to help you succeed.

In 2015–16, we helped over 1,500 students find work placements across a range of sectors, with 250 employers attending 14 on-campus skills and careers fairs.

As a Westminster student, you’ll have access to our services throughout your studies and after you graduate.

We can help you:

  • find work placements related to your course
  • find part-time/vacation, placement and graduate jobs, including voluntary experience
  • find international opportunities to enhance your employability
  • market yourself effectively to employers
  • write better CVs and application forms
  • develop your interview and enterprise skills
  • plan your career with our careers consultants
  • meet employers and explore your career options at our employer fairs, careers presentations and networking events throughout the year

Find out more about the Career Development Centre.

What our students say

Claudia Bragman

Claudia Bragman

The course was a great platform to develop my skills and learn from my tutors to discover which aspects of the profession I was most suited to (running a freelance business as a conference interpreter and translator, as it turns out). It was also a very useful networking space as some of my course mates who chose a similar path to me went on to become my colleagues.

In short, the MA was a real springboard to the professional sphere and to developing my business as a freelance conference interpreter and translator.

Judit Barberà Monterde

Judit Barberà Monterde

I came to Westminster for the amazing location, but stayed for the frankly outstanding MA programme and the small-group classes that really allowed me to deepen my knowledge of the subjects I was truly interested in.

I had the chance to meet people from all over the world, which not only enriched me as a person, but also opened doors to career opportunities I never thought I would have.

Lisney Vergara García

Lisney Vergara García

The Translation and Interpreting MA has helped me develop both the theoretical and practical skills necessary to become a better translator and interpreter. It has also contributed to my professional development and created excellent networking opportunities that will certainly open new doors in the future.

It is a challenging, but very rewarding experience. The excellent academic and professional environment, and the enthusiasm shared by students, has made it a lot easier and more enjoyable.

Find out more

Translation and Interpreting Postgraduate Information Session

Languages at University of Westminster

 

Fees and Funding

UK and EU tuition fee: £9,000 (Price per academic year)

Find out how we set our tuition fees.

Alumni discount

This course is eligible for an alumni discount. Find out if you are eligible and how to apply by visiting our Alumni discounts page.

Funding

As well as tuition fee loans, there is a range of funding available to help you fund your studies.

Find out about postgraduate student funding options.

Scholarships

The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

Additional costs

See what you may need to pay for separately and what your tuition fees cover.

International tuition fee: £15,000 (Price per academic year)

Find out how we set our tuition fees.

Alumni discount

This course is eligible for an alumni discount. Find out if you are eligible and how to apply by visiting our Alumni discounts page.

Funding

Find out about funding for international students.

Scholarships

The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

Additional costs

See what you may need to pay for separately and what your tuition fees cover.

Course Location

Our Regent Campus is composed of three sites all situated on and around one of the most famous and vibrant streets in London. The Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities is based at 309 Regent Street and includes recently refurbished social spaces and gym facilities. Students in the faculty are also taught at our Wells Street site. Westminster Law School resides at Little Titchfield Street. Alongside a full mock courtroom, hi-tech learning spaces and a pro-bono clinic, it also houses our state-of-the-art, 382-seat lecture theatre. For more details, visit our locations page.

Contact us

Contact the Course Enquiries Team:

+44 (0)20 7915 5511

[email protected]

Opening hours (GMT): 9am-5pm Monday to Friday

More information

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