Module code: TRAM495

Module Overview

This module provides students with a systematic framework for understanding key concepts in Translation and Interpreting Studies and how they relate and apply to the rest of the programme and to everyday professional practice. The module enables students to confront a wide range of translation and interpreting challenges, from the lack of equivalence between languages and cultures to contemporary technological, ethical and societal issues affecting translation and interpreting practice, including the rapidly evolving use of machine translation and artificial intelligence (AI). The module equips students with both a solid grounding in the guiding principles of translation and interpreting, derived from scholarly engagement with the discipline, and the strategies required to engage in best practices in the profession and future career development. Taking a holistic approach to translator and interpreter education, the module consists of lectures and seminars that discuss the main principles and challenges of translation and interpreting, and explore solutions in close alignment with other modules in the programme. Students complement lectures and seminars with practical exercises and independent reading. 

Module provider

School of Literature and Languages

Module Leader


Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 112

Lecture Hours: 22

Guided Learning: 11

Captured Content: 5

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative module contents include:

  • An introduction to Translation and Interpreting Studies and different types and modes of multilingual communication

  • Issues of linguistic, cultural and pragmatic equivalence in diverse translation and interpreting contexts

  • Cognitive aspects of translation and interpreting processes

  • Professional translation and interpreting strategies  

  • Human and computer interaction in contemporary translation and interpreting contexts

  • Translation and interpreting quality

  • Societal factors impacting translation and interpreting  

  • Present and future challenges of translation and interpreting in the age of machine translation and artificial intelligence 

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Guided commentary (1,000 words) 30
Coursework Essay (2,500-3,000 words) or 800-word supporting documentation to be followed by a 15-min oral presentation 70

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate:

* an understanding of the key concepts of translation and interpreting
* the ability to select relevant problem-solving strategies, and knowledgeably inform and justify translation/interpreting decisions
* the ability to manage time and work under strict deadlines


Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Coursework: a guided commentary of 1,000 words (30%), addressing learning outcomes 1-3

  • Coursework: an essay of 2,500-3,000 words or an 800-word commentary based on a 15-minute oral presentation (70%), addressing learning outcomes 1-4


Formative assessment

Formative assessment will be centered on student participation and class discussions during seminars.


Students will receive written feedback on individual coursework, and peer and group feedback during class discussions.

Module aims

  • The module aims to: develop an understanding in students of the fundamental principles and challenges of contemporary translation and interpreting
  • appreciate the translator's/interpreter's role in the communication process
  • address translation/interpreting tasks in a variety of linguistic, cultural, societal, technological and situational scenarios
  • create an awareness of different translation/interpreting problem-solving strategies and solutions
  • knowledgeably discuss translation/interpreting decisions
  • use the appropriate metalanguage of the discipline

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 By the end of the module students will be able to: recognize different types of translation/interpreting scenarios KCPT
002 Identify translation/interpreting challenges communicative goals KCPT
003 Assess the strategies and resources required for appropriate target-language renditions according to diverse communicative goals KCPT
004 Critically evaluate translation/interpreting solutions in accordance with the precepts of Translation/Interpreting Studies scholarship, using appropriate metalanguage, and adopting standard academic English textual conventions KCPT
005 Appreciate new societal, technological and language-industry demands CP

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

  • facilitate a holistic approach to knowledge and skills acquisition so that students can relate the module to the rest of the programme and their own translation/interpreting practice.

  • stimulate classroom discussion as a means of drawing on intercultural awareness and improve communication skills

  • encourage self-reflection,  develop critical thinking , and inspire independent reading to develop their own pathways in the language services industry

  • raise awareness of academic standards and conventions to promote adaptability and compliance with postgraduate-specific requirements

  • promote best practices in the translation/interpreting profession through sustainable solutions


The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Lectures will be interspersed with opportunities for group and whole class discussions, where students will be able to assimilate, apply and question acquired knowledge and where they will be able to analyse concrete examples from a technical, linguistic and social perspective

  • Students are expected to read translation studies-related sources outside class in order to build their confidence in discussing translation principles and challenges and they are expected to prepare academic sources for set assignments and selected short texts for tasks tackled in class


Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: TRAM495

Other information

Surrey's Curriculum Framework is committed to developing graduates with strengths in Employability, Digital Capabilities, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Sustainability and Resourcefulness and Resilience. This module is designed to allow students to develop knowledge, skills and capabilities in a range of areas:

Students are encouraged to share experiences and knowledge from their own multicultural and linguistic backgrounds, and to respect and value differences in experience and scholarship. The module explores the wide diversity of translation phenomena in the world. Students are encouraged to engage with and learn from diverse linguistic and cultural perspectives through debates among typical multi-cultural and polyglot cohorts.

The module taps into a fulsome tradition of extant research and practice whilst being forward-looking and anticipating future developments, allowing students to analyse in theory and in practice different translation and interpreting scenarios, source texts and interpreter-mediated events, and client requirements.  All of this is highly valuable to employers for different roles in the language services industry.

The module also promotes awareness of new challenges that have emerged as a result of emerging translation and interpreting technologies and encourages the development of problem-solving skills that teach students how to reason about and solve new problems in translation and interpreting, and how to respond to these in an academic and a real world environment, thereby helping to promote student resourcefulness and resilience.

All of the resources for this module are available digitally. Students work in a sustainable environment, using their digital capabilities to explore module topics in further depth through virtual learning environments, digital archives and software applications.

The module is central to the programme as it enables students to make connections between other compulsory modules and options available to them

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Interpreting (Chinese Pathway) MA 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Translation MA 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Translation and Interpreting MA 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Interpreting MA 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Translation and Interpreting Studies MRes 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Translation (Chinese Pathway) MA 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2025/6 academic year.