Specialist Translation (SMLM142)

StaffDr Richard Mansell - Convenor
Credit Value30
ECTS Value15.00
NQF Level7
Duration of Module Term 2: 11 weeks;

Module aims

The module aims to provide students with a thorough introduction to the basis of specialised languages, through the study of the nature of terminology and genre-specific features, and then the study of specific subject domains in a language pair (or pairs).

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Acquire an in-depth knowledge of the nature of specialised languages that will enable them to translate specialist texts from the source language to the target language.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 2. Develop expertise in a specialised domain which they may wish to offer for the purposes of professional translation.
  • 3. Independently of the tutor, be able to access, evaluate and use electronic and paper-based resources.

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 4. Demonstrate the ability to produce, to deadline, a substantial translation (written text) of a complex nature and present it to the required professional standards. The expertise acquired in translating for a specialised domain will be extendible to another domain for the purposes of further professional development.

Syllabus plan

The module carries three components:

1. Five one-hour lectures delivered in the first five weeks and core to all.

2. Ten hours of language-specific translation workshops. Students taking two languages will take two sets of 10 hours (to begin in week 2).

3. For those students only studying one language, a supervised translation project which will develop one of the specialist fields. It will comprise the following:

  • a. 30 mins individual supervision to establish a particular approach to the translation task (to take place in week 6).
  • b. 1 hour small-group (language-specific) supervision covering salient linguistic and cultural features.
  • c. One cross language session where students present their approach to the text and strategies to overcome translation problems.

The following syllabus plan is indicative of the areas covered.
Introduction to specialised languages.
Definition of specialised languages:
Terminology and the nature of the term.
Genre-specific structures.
Variation of specialised languages across fields and languages.
How to translate specialised languages.
The special case of neologisms.
Tools available to the translator.
Translation of specialised texts.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning and teaching activities5Lectures
Scheduled learning and teaching11 for students studying one language, 22 for students studying two languagesTranslation workshops
Scheduled learning and teaching2.5 for students studying one language onlySupervision for translation project
Guided independent study281.5 for students studying one language, 273 for students studying two languagesPrivate study

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Regular written assignments of practical translation tasks300-word translations, to be accomplished throughout the seminarsMS1 DS2, 3 PK4Oral; One assignment returned with written comments (by week 8)

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Portfolio of translations, including strategy, translation, and decisions of detail1007,500 wordsMS1 DS2,3 PK4Written (on pro-forma)

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Materials to be provided by the tutor and drawn from a variety of on-line and paper-based sources from
the subject domain.

A familiarity with the texts prescribed in the module SMLM140 Translation
Methodology is presupposed.

Module has an active ELE page?


Available as distance learning?