Skip to main content

Unit information: Translating in a Professional Context in 2015/16

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Translating in a Professional Context
Unit code MODL30010
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Carol O'Sullivan
Open unit status Not open




School/department School of Modern Languages
Faculty Faculty of Arts


This unit will introduce final-year students to the different contexts in which professional translation takes place. The unit will focus on three themes: i) the professional context(s) of translation; ii) the translation brief; iii) criteria for the evaluation of translation.

Aims: To introduce students to a significant body of knowledge of a complexity appropriate to final year level. The content will include linguistic terminology relevant to translation; translation theory; translation analysis; translation technologies. To enhance students’ capacity to reflect effectively on their own translation practice. To develop further skills of synthesis, analysis and independent research, building on the skills acquired in units at level I. To equip students with skills relevant to professional practice or postgraduate study in translation.

Intended learning outcomes

Successful students will demonstrate

  1. that they can reflect critically on the processes by which they have undertaken translation tasks;
  2. that they can articulate, both orally and in writing, theoretical positions about translation;
  3. that they have gained knowledge of the professional contexts in which translations are produced and translation issues relating to these
  4. and that they are familiar with the terminology and methodology of translation in English and in at least one modern foreign language.

Teaching details

Two seminar hours per week across one teaching block (22 contact hours).

Assessment Details

  1. One 15-minute group presentation analyzing a text and its published translation. To be filmed and submitted via Blackboard. (25% of mark - group mark) (ILOs 2 and 4)
  2. Translation (unassessed) with assessed analysis and justification of the choices made in the light of the translation brief. Commentary should be 1,000 words. (25% of mark) (ILOs 1 and 4)
  3. Essay on one of a series of topics provided by the tutor (3,000 words). (50% of mark) (ILOs 2, 3, 4)

Reading and References

Mona Baker, In Other Words. London: Routledge, 2008. Susan Bassnett, Translation Studies. London: Routledge, 1980. Andrew Chesterman, ‘Proposal for a Hieronymic Oath’. The Translator 7:2 (2001). Hervey, Higgins et al. Thinking...Translation series. Gill Paul, Translation in Practice. Dalkey Archive Press.

  • Lawrence Venuti, The Translation Studies Reader (Routledge: 2000)