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Course content

This exciting Chinese-English Translation MA programme develops an understanding of translation in a global context. You will explore how practical translation is informed by theory, develop your verbal and written communication skills and build your IT literacy to help you produce translation of the highest quality.

Overseas students will come to the UK not only to learn advanced translation skills from and into Chinese, but also to develop their English language skills and their knowledge of UK culture first-hand. The course is also open to students for whom English is a native language as long as their command of Chinese is at a high level.

The MA in Chinese-English Translation will enable you to develop the skills in translation, interpreting, analytical thinking, research and collaboration that are essential to today's workplace and which will equip you to facilitate communication between cultures.

The School of Modern Languages has an established record in translator training and excellent industry links. Its translation staff include practising professional translators and translation researchers. We are a corporate member of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting and an institutional member of the American Translators’ Association (ATA). We are on the ATA’s list of approved providers of translator training.

Programme Structure

Semester One
During the first semester, all students will participate in weekly workshop­-style classes in the Applied Translation unit taught by experienced professional translators. By grappling with a variety of different texts, participating in class discussions and receiving personal feedback from tutors, students will build the key skills necessary to grow and develop their translation ability.

The Theories of Translation unit is a lecture-based course that gives an opportunity for advanced reflection on the modes and purposes of translation within the translator’s social and cultural context, while also equipping students with the theoretical tools and approaches necessary for practical translation and further research.

Units in English for Translators and in Academic English build an awareness of how language works and help to hone English skills for professional purposes. Students whose native language is English may substitute these units for another.

Semester Two
During the second semester, the two main core units for all students are a 15,000 word dissertation and an Introduction to Specialised Translation. The dissertation takes the form of either an extended translation plus commentary, or a research-­based dissertation. The supervision process gives students time to formulate their ideas and plan their approach, as for many this will be the most substantial piece of extended writing they have undertaken.

The Introduction to Specialised Translation unit adopts a similar approach to Applied Translation, but focuses on key specialist areas that are in demand in the translation industry. Specialist topics can vary but may include literary, legal, scientific, medical and translation for technology.

In addition to the two core units above, students are also given the opportunity to select from a variety of optional units.


The MA in Chinese-­English Translation provides a foundation for students looking to enter or develop their careers in translation project management, freelance translation or as in-­house translators and interpreters in international corporate and government institutions.

The skills developed through this degree are transferable to a variety of related careers, such as international relations, PR, marketing and business. In addition, the research and theoretical components of this programme provide an excellent entry point to the field of Translation Studies for anyone aiming to pursue a PhD in the UK or abroad.

Visit the Chinese-English Translation MA page on the University of Bristol website for more details!





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