About the course
Should translated literature be entirely faithful to the original text, or should the translation be creative in its attempt not to lose the poetry of the work? How can translation account for double entendre or other wordplay? Is it possible to translate experimental literature which ignores conventional grammar rules?
Building on the internationally recognised expertise of both our Departments of Language and Linguistics, and our Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies, our MA Translation and Literature course will allow you to further specialise in literature and general translation. In the second term you will also learn techniques of professional literary translation. You develop your own personal translation skills, allowing you to translate a literary work accurately and creatively from one language to another for your dissertation.
Our course is offered with the combination of English and one of Arabic, French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish. You can be a native or near-native speaker of any of these languages, as you learn to translate to and from both languages. You work with native speakers in developing your ability to move accurately and quickly between your chosen language and English.
Explore our hands-on, practical modules, including:
- Principles of Translation
- US and Caribbean literatures in dialogue
- Translation Portfolios
- Technologies of Translation
We are one of the largest and most prestigious language and linguistics departments in the world, a place where talented students become part of an academic community in which the majority of research is rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’, placing us firmly within the top 10 departments in the UK (REF 2014)
Our Department of Language and Linguistics is ranked among the top 200 departments on the planet according to the QS World University Rankings (2017).
If you want a global outlook, are interested in human communication, and want to study for a degree with real-world practical value in a world-class department, welcome to Essex.
Our expert staff
Our lecturers are skilled interpreters and translators, experienced in training students with the necessary skills for professional practice. We maintain excellent student-staff ratios with capped language-specific seminars.
Our lecturers come from around the world including France, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Brazil, Spain, Cuba, China, and the UK. They will share their expertise with you in the areas of professional translation.
Within our Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies, Professor Karin Littau specialises in book and film history, reception, adaptation and translation studies, and is especially interested in the effects of print, cinematograph, and computers on practices of reading, writing and translation. Dr Clare Finburgh has translated several plays from French into English, and worked as dramaturg for productions of British plays in France, and French works in the UK.
- 24-hour self-access to our translation lab dedicated to translation students
- Use specialist software such as SDL Trados Studio 2015
- Meet fellow readers at the student-run Literature Society or at the department’s Myth Reading Group
- Access the University’s Media Centre, equipped with state-of-the-art studios, cameras, audio and lighting equipment, and an industry-standard editing suite
- Weekly multilingual workshops led by internationally renowned experts from the industry
- Our Languages for All programme offers you the opportunity to study an additional language alongside your course at no extra cost
If you love literature and languages and would like to acquire professional translation skills, then our MA Translation and Literature is for you. Takers of our courses in translation can use the skills gained to further their future career in this area.
You develop a range of key employability skills including researching, writing for specific purposes, and translation. Our course typically leads to a career in translation, but could also lead to a career in education, publishing and administration.
We work with the University’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.
Within our Department of Language and Linguistics, we also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil. We offer supervision in areas including language acquisition, language learning and language teaching, culture and communication, psycholinguistics, language disorders, sociolinguistics, and theoretical and descriptive linguistics.
Our graduates are successful in a wide variety of career paths. They leave Essex with a unique set of skills and experience that are in demand by employers.
UK entry requirements
Native English Speakers
We will consider applications with an overall grade of 2:2 and above, or equivalent, in French, German, Italian, Portuguese or Spanish.
Native French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish Speakers
Our applicants should have a 2:2 degree, or equivalent, which includes English as a major component. If you have a joint honours degree (eg. Business Studies with English), your performance in the English component must be of a good standard.
In case of non-native speakers, applicants need to have a near native speaker competence in English (level C1-C2) or applicants should have completed their higher education studies in an English speaking country and have an overall grade of 2:1 and above, or equivalent, in French, German, Italian, Portuguese or Spanish.
International and EU entry requirements
We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries.
for further details about the qualifications we accept. Include information in your email about the
undergraduate qualification you have already completed or are currently taking.
English language requirements
IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum component score of 6.0 in all components.
If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.