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MA translation in the uk
Thread poster: EST2010
Mar 2, 2010

Hi !

I would like to do a MA translation in the UK. I found quite a lot of interesting ones but which one will give me the best training possible and the best insight into this profession ?
Does anyone know about what's best between Westminster, Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter ... ?

Thanks a lot


 

Russell Jones  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:03
Italian to English
Suggestions Mar 2, 2010

I hope people with experience of these courses will give you the benefit of their advice.
From an outsider's point of view Westminster is the University with the reputation for translation while Bristol is regarded as one of the top UK Universities.
I think you need to consider what sort of environnment you want too; London is expensive, Exeter is an out-of town self-contained campus, Bath is one of the newer Universities but all are well regarded.

[Edited at 2010-03-03 09:48 GMT]


 

Paula Borges  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 06:03
Member (2010)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Bristol University Mar 3, 2010

I was very interested in the Bristol University MA. It is a distance course, which is very convenient, but the prices are higher compared to others. Unfortunately, they weren't very helpful with my enquiries by email, regarding the course and payment, all I got was an automated response. All other attempts had no replies.

The University City of London also offers interesting postgraduate courses, I just finished a CPD course there and am very impressed with their professionalism and structure.

London Metropolitan has options too, but I wouldn't recommend studying with them. I have paid for a short course on Trados that ended up getting cancelled, and have heard very little about a refund and they have been very unprofessional, to be honest.


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:03
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Portsmouth Mar 3, 2010

Portsmouth was commented last year

 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:03
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Incredible Mar 3, 2010

Paula Borges wrote:
I was very interested in the Bristol University MA. It is a distance course, which is very convenient, but the prices are higher compared to others. Unfortunately, they weren't very helpful with my enquiries by email, regarding the course and payment, all I got was an automated response. All other attempts had no replies.

This is incredible. In the case of Portsmouth I did receive a very helpful, kind, and comprehensive reply, although it took about a week.


 

Gloria GK  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:03
Spanish to English
+ ...
Westminster Uni Mar 3, 2010

I did my master's in bilingual translation at Westminster Uni. To be perfectly honest, I wasn't terribly impressed with the quality of the faculty at all. Perhaps it has improved since then, but I don't feel I learnt much from them, though it did give me a piece of paper which has been rather useful. It is really not possible to be a translator nowadays without qualifications. Having said that, I recently recommended to a friend that, instead, he should take the Diploma in Translation course and exam from the Institute of Linguists and also the Diploma in Public Service Interpreting. I believe they are both more useful when it comes to practical skills. And also a lot cheaper!

 

Rebecca Hendry  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:03
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Heriot Watt Mar 3, 2010

I did the MSc in Translation & Technology at Heriot Watt University in Edinburgh a few years ago. I found it very useful. It seems that the course has changed somewhat, and is now called Translation & Computer-Assisted Translation Tools. There are other options: Translating & Conference Interpreting, and Translation & European Studies. It was a full-time 8-month course to get the PGDip, and I then had to write a dissertation to achieve the MSc.

However, from what I can tell, the only languages offered currently are French, German, Greek, and Spanish. As I don't know your language pair, I'm not sure if this would be any good.

If distance learning is an option, have a look at the MA/PGDip from the University of the West of England.


 

Sonia Hill
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:03
Italian to English
Portsmouth Mar 3, 2010

I am toying with the idea of doing part of the MA in Translation Studies at Portsmouth University. I don't feel the need to do the whole course, as I already have an MA in Italian from UCL, but I think the postgraduate diploma would help towards my career and I am sure it would be very interesting. Portsmouth appeals to me because it is all done through distance learning, and with two small children that's the only way I could do it at the moment.

My other option is just to go ahead and take the IoL exams next January. I think I have enough experience to pass them without doing a course at all, so this may be a better option for me. It's also considerably cheaper than doing an MA.

All the universities you've mentioned are supposed to be very good. In terms of the places themselves, which is something else you may want to consider (I'm not sure how well you know the various cities), I grew up just outside Exeter and it is a lovely area. We now live fairly near Bath, which is also a great place. Cardiff is lovely - it's where my husband is from and we are thinking of moving back there. I'm not a fan of Bristol personally, but I know some people love it. Westminster - well it's London, which is where I went to uni, and it's a great city while you're young. It has everything to offer, although as Russell says, it is an expensive place to live.


 

Susanna Garcia  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:03
Italian to English
+ ...
Swansea Mar 3, 2010

Great course and a lovely location. It most definitely helped me and is one of only 5 UK universities involved in the DGT's 'élite' network.
http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/translation/programmes/emt/network/index_en.htm
Although I completed in 2007, former students of mine have attended since and have also been very satisfied.
And no, I'm not on commission!


 

Elizabeth Garrison  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:03
Spanish to English
+ ...
Manchester Mar 3, 2010

I did my MA in Translation & Interpretation Studies at the University of Manchester and found the course focused on theory more than practice! The bulk of modules concentrated on translation theory (which I have not found at all useful in day-to-day business) and while a few highlighted practical aspects such as using MultiTerm, setting up a website and using online glossaries, it was not until I did a work experience with a translation company that I felt I actually learned how to really translate and use CAT tools.

I did not do any modules in Interpreting so I cannot comment on those.


 

EST2010
TOPIC STARTER
MA translation Mar 3, 2010

Thanks a lot for your answers, It is very useful.

I realized that my first post wasn't very detailed.
My pair language is French and I am mainly interested in translation. I am looking for a master either around Bristol - where i can have an accommodation - or London where I live. I am considering an 'e learning' course as well, from any location.

To the people who have completed a postgraduate diploma or MA in translation, has it been really helpful to find work afterward ?

'Great course and a lovely location. It most definitely helped me and is one of only 5 UK universities involved in the DGT's 'élite' network.'


Does that help in the future ?


 

Carol Gullidge  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:03
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
MA course really helpful Apr 14, 2010

EST2010 wrote:


To the people who have completed a postgraduate diploma or MA in translation, has it been really helpful to find work afterward ?






Yes, I found my MA in Literary Translation made a real difference, and having it verified by ProZ - which took a little while - was the icing on the cake. For me, this is the only paper qualification in translation that I possess, and many outsourcers require translation credentials. Together with (unpaid!) translation experience gained on a free online journal towards the beginning of my translating career, my MA has proved invaluable in gaining me work.

Good luck in whichever university you choose! Mine was Exeter - a lovely campus (albeit rather disrupted at the moment), and a beautiful part of the country. At the time, they offered the MA in Literary Translation - which was very theoretical, but with plenty of practical experience to test and consolidate the theory - and another, more general, MA course, which also offered the use of CAT tools. I believe the courses have been updated since then...

And, yes, I did find all that theory extremely useful. Until then, I had always fondly imagined that all a good translator needed was "flair", but the course soon taught me that this is far from the whole story!

[Edited at 2010-04-14 08:44 GMT]

[Edited at 2010-04-14 16:07 GMT]


 

lydiar  Identity Verified
New Zealand
Local time: 21:03
Member (2006)
French to English
Dip Trans May 7, 2010

I went straight into evening classes with City Uni in London and sat the Dip Trans exams - far more useful than the Msc I eventually did.
I did this alongside non-translation work (to pay the bills).

http://www.city.ac.uk/translation/courses/iolet_dip_trans/index.html


 

Andreea Ciurea  Identity Verified
Romania
English to Romanian
+ ...
Bristol May 7, 2010

I'm currently doing a distance learning MA at the Univ. of the West of England (UWE), Bristol (which is not the same as the Univ of Bristol, btw). The subjects they propose are very interesting and the prices are not outrageous. Available only as distance learning.

Good points: interesting offer, friendly staff, competent teachers, access to a lot of ressources online, organising diferent kinds on workshops

Bad points: not enough feedback from some teachers (main bad point), it takes them very long to give you your marks (1-3 months), some teachers don't answer e-mails for weeks.

For you to decide.

Andreea


 

HCDixon  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:03
Spanish to English
Literary translation Jun 8, 2010

I´m moving back to the UK after many years abroad. I´ve worked for more than 20 years on Spanish to English translation and am also a bilingual writer and I would love to do an MA in literary translation.

I´ll be in the Brighton area. Anyone know of an MA nearby? At Sussex? Also, does the British Centre for Literary Translation at East Anglia offer online courses?

My last question: is it easy to get work for literary translation via ProZ? I haven´t seen any postings.

Thanks.


 
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