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The University of Southampton
Modern Languages and LinguisticsPart of Humanities

MA Translation and Professional Communication Skills (1 year)

Covering a broad range of topics and contexts, the MA Translation and Professional Communication Skills will teach you to effectively communicate across different languages and cultures. This programme has a substantial hands-on element, giving you practical insights into translation, interpreting and a number of other related fields.

The MA in Translation and Professional Communication Skills aims to equip you with the knowledge and skills needed for a career in translation or other professions that require a deep understanding of global languages, cultures and societies, and to apply those skills in practical and professional contexts. You will be able to choose from among a range of specialist modules, including subtitling, mediation and interpreting, professional writing and editing.

As well as working with translation theorists and practitioners, you will have the opportunity to study with experts in cultural and literary studies, history, ethnography and anthropology.  This interdisciplinary approach will equip you with a deepened multicultural knowledge and will allow you to develop a range of professional skills, allied to a deeper understanding of what working across cultures entails, preparing you for a range of careers in bi- and multilingual and multicultural environments.

View the programme specification for this course for 2020/21 entrants

Programme Structure

In the first semester, you will be introduced to key translation theory, which you will then have the opportunity to use in an applied translation module in semester 2. You will also choose one or two options in each semester from a selection of modules, focused on language, culture and/or professional writing. You may also choose a work placement module, giving you the chance to apply your skills in a hands-on setting.

The programme has a core independent research element, assessed through a dissertation or extended translation project. 

Key Facts

Duration: 1 year (full time); 2 years (part time)

Start date: September

Closing date: 1st September (an application decision cannot be guaranteed in time unless a complete application is received by this date - students requiring a visa to study should also allow extra time for visa processes)

Dissertation Length: 15,000 words

Typical entry requirements

Selection process

Qualification: Bachelor’s degree in a related subject for example in a Humanities or Social Science discipline, including (but not limited to):

  • Modern/Foreign Languages
  • English Literature/ Comparative Literature
  • History
  • Film
  • Sociology
  • Anthropology
  • Cultural Geography

Other relevant experience or qualifications may be considered.

Grade/GPA: Normally first- or upper second-class (or international equivalent)

English and Chinese language requirements

You will need to be highly proficient in Chinese and English. English must be either at native-speaker level or IELTS 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in all components. You will need to demonstrate at least graduate-level proficiency in Chinese, typically minimum CEFR C1.

This page contains specific entry requirements for this course. Find out about equivalent entry requirements and qualifications for your country.

Typical course content

The programme is built around core modules in translation theory and practice and incorporates a wide range of practice based and theoretical optional modules.

In the second semester, you will begin preparing for your independent research project (either 15,000-word dissertation or an extended translation project), with an intensive practical research skills module and guidance from a supervisor allocated according to specialism. Your dissertation will be completed during the summer months.

Year 1


Research Skills (Dissertation Preparation)

Translation Technology


MA Dissertation (Languages & Cultures and Translation & Professional Communication Skills)

Practical Translation  

Translation: Theory and Practice


Audiovisual Translation

Language and Intercultural Communication

Language ideologies in a globalising world

Memory in National and Transnational Contexts

Narrative Non-Fiction: The Interdisciplinary Art

Narrative, Place, Identity

Nation, Culture, Power

Placement Module 1

Placement Module 2

Public Service Interpreting

Public Service Interpreting

Translation Theory and Practice (2): specialist translation

Transnational Movement in the Age of Globalisation

Writing for Children and Young People

Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if s/he takes full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information can be found in the programme handbook (or other appropriate guide or website).

Tuition fees

List of tuition fees for this course and it's variations
Course TitleAwardYear of entryMode of studyUK/EUInternational
Translation and Professional Communication SkillsMA2020Full-time£9,250£18,812
View the full list of course fees


Scholarships, bursaries, sponsorships or grants may be available to support you through your course. Funding opportunities available to you are linked to your subject area and/or your country of origin. These can be from the University of Southampton or other sources.

Explore funding opportunities

Costs associated with this course

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In some cases you'll be able to choose modules (which may have different costs associated with that module) which will change the overall cost of a programme to you. Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

Learning and teaching

You will be guided through to the achievement of the programme’s learning outcomes by a range of lectures, seminars and workshops, supplemented by one-on-one contact with programme staff.


Your progress on the course will be assessed through a range of formative and summative tasks. These include critical essays, oral presentations, practical translation tasks, reports on research events and reviews of published scholarship. These tasks will inform your final dissertation, which will be based on your own research interests and developed through consultation with an individual staff member

Study locations

Student life

Avenue Campus

Only a few minutes walk from Highfield Campus, Avenue provides a purpo...Find out more

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