A degree in modern languages offers a wide variety of career paths.
This page outlines some of the jobs that Westminster graduates with your degree have moved into and additional information on other roles available to modern language graduates.
It is also worth bearing in mind that over 60 per cent of graduate opportunities accept applications from graduates with a background in any degree subject so you may have a much larger choice of career than you thought.
Roles held by modern language graduates, including Westminster graduates:
- Account Manager/Executive - Insurance
- Immigration Officer - Passport Control
- Marketing Executive
- Recruitment Consultant
- Teaching Assistant
- Speech & Language Therapy Assistant
- English as a Foreign Language Teacher
- Tourism Officer
Many modern language graduates work in jobs where their language skills prove essential to employers. Roles that sometimes require a language include:
- Events Organisers
- International sales manager
- Customer support adviser
- Market research professional
Further case studies:
- Supply Chain Co-ordinator
- Office Sales Manager
- European Policy Adviser
- Customer Satisfaction Manager
Some typical career paths
Applications for the majority of courses in England and Wales are made via the GTTR (Graduate Teacher Training Registry). Apply in the autumn before you wish to start.
The Teacher Training Agency has more information about teaching, taster courses, etc.
Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)
There are a number of ways to qualify to teach English. If you intend to spend a year or more teaching abroad, a certificate course is desirable, for example the Cambridge CELTA (Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults) or the Trinity Certificate in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages).
A postgraduate degree (eg an MA in Translation) will significantly increase your employability in this area.
- The Chartered Institute of Linguists (CIoL) offers a recognised Diploma in Translation, which is equivalent to a good honours degree in the source language and a flexible way of gaining a translation qualification (it can be taken over five years).
- The AGCAS Vocational Course Survey Language Translation & Interpreting is a good source of information on the range of postgraduate courses offered in this area.
- Proz.com is a leading source of translation jobs and translation work for freelancers.
- The Association of Translation Companies.
- The British Centre for Literary Translation
- Based at the University of East Anglia, BCLT works to raise the profile of literary translation in the UK through events, activities, publications and research. Has links to sources of grants and funding for translations and translators.
- Authors and Translators contains interesting interviews with literary translators which give an insight into the job, it's rewards and challenges.
- Translation Grants - London Book Fair information on funding available for literature translation around the globe.
- British Comparative Literature Association (link to: http://bcla.org/ )Promotes the scholarly study of literature across languages and borders.
- Society of Authors - FAQs around literary translation and approaching publishers.
- Emerging Translators Network specifically for people new to literary translating.
- Proz.com - A lively forum for people starting out.
- Translators Association Specialist unit within the Society of Authors. Offers professional advice on copyright, libel, tax and accountancy matters, contract vetting etc.
A postgraduate diploma or Masters in interpreting techniques is usually expected. These courses are run in many institutions, both full and part-time.
- Language Recruitment Specialists
- RLN - Regional Languages Network
- EURopean Employment Services (EURES)
- Languages Work - national information resource on careers with languages
- MI5 Careers
- Volunteering for Translators
- Word Reference Forums - Language Forums