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2010/1 Module Catalogue
Module Provider: Language & Translation Studies Short Name: TRAM200
Level: M Module Co-ordinator: BRAUN S Dr (Lang & Trans)
Number of credits: 60 Number of ECTS credits: 30
Module Availability
From end of Semester 2
Assessment Pattern
Unit(s) of Assessment
Weighting Towards Module Mark (%)
Submission of a 10,000-12,000 word assignment on a public service interpreting (or translation) issue by the date published in the Programme Handbook, normally during the second week of September
Submission of a 8,000-10,000 word commentary based on the recording/transcription of a 2,000-4,000 word interpreting task by the date published in the Programme Handbook, normally during the second week of September
Commentary 90%,
Transcript 10%

Qualifying Condition(s)
A mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Module Overview
This module allows students to specialise in an aspect of the programme of particular interest by writing a topic-based dissertation, for example based on project work conducted in the Spring semester, or doing a commentary based on an interpreting assignment. Successful completion of the module requires close collaboration with a supervisor and good planning and organisation skills.
A pass in the Postgraduate Diploma of 50% or above
Module Aims
As an extensive piece of work (10,000-12,000 words) which allows the student to work on a topic independently in depth – with appropriate guidance – the dissertation provides the opportunity for students to specialise in an aspect of the taught programme which is of particular interest and to synthesise the skills and knowledge which they have acquired
Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:
  • compose a 10,000-12,000 word dissertation (excluding references) according to one of two patterns (see Module Content);
  • work independently on an extended piece of work in a sustained way with guidance;
  • discuss and critically engage with a particular aspect of Public Service Interpreting/Translation;
  • demonstrate research skills developed to a level of complexity and sophistication commensurate with masters level descriptors;
  • apply the knowledge gained in theoretical modules to a project approaching professional requirements
  • reflect on practice, drawing systematically and effectively on the available scholarly literature;
  • plan and manage larger projects over a period of time to meet deadlines and quality expectations.
Module Content
Students will communicate with a potential supervisor, or with the Convenor for their language group, or with the Programme Director to discuss possible topics during the second part of the Spring semester (or earlier if appropriate), and in any case not later than the first week of the summer break. Orientation sessions will be held in the Spring semester (before Easter) in preparation for choosing a topic and commencing work on the dissertation; this will include workshop tasks and group work The following main patterns of work are possible:
  • Students can conduct a piece of research on a well-specified question related to Public Service Interpreting (or Translation), drawing on the relevant literature. The work may be of an empirical or theoretical kind and must be written in English (10,000-12,000 words). It will be possible to use the project work in the PSI Trends and Issues module as a starting point for this type of dissertation.
  • Alternatively, students can produce a commentary (8-10,000 words in English) based on a recorded and transcribed interpreting task (2,000-4,000 words; transcription printed as Annex/electronic) in which particular problems and solutions are explicated, drawing on the relevant literature and focussing thematically on an aspect of the interpreting task of particular interest. The interpreting assignment will be done collaboratively. Students will work in groups of normally three to choose, prepare and simulate an appropriate scenario.
Methods of Teaching/Learning
By individual consultation and discussion as well as independent research. See also Dissertation Guidelines in the Programme of Study for detailed guidance on scholarly conventions and procedures. Orientation sessions will be held in the Spring semester including workshop tasks.
A topic should be agreed normally by the first week of June. Students are responsible for completing and submitting the relevant form (see Programme Handbook). All proposals are subject to this approval process by the potential supervisor in co-operation with the Programme Director.
Students and supervisors will agree a timetable of work which will include regular meetings and/or communications, at which outlines, drafts and revisions of written work are discussed, students are responsible for completing and submitting the relevant form (see Programme Handbook). Students are expected to submit sections of the dissertation for comment as their work proceeds. Means of communication between student and supervisor should be agreed at the beginning of the supervision period. See Appendix C for further information about the MA Dissertation plus Appendix D Guidelines for writing Commentaries and Appendix E Guidelines for writing Dissertations.
Selected Texts/Journals
Specific to individual topics but students are strongly advised to consult the references recommended for other modules, in particular Interpreting Studies and PSI Trends and Issues.
Essential reading
Williams, J. / Chesterman, A. (2002). The Map. A beginner’s guide to doing research in translation studies. Manchester: St Jerome (chapter 1).
The Preparation and Presentation of Theses and Dissertations:
Citing references:,200347&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL
Last Updated
12 August 2009