Undergraduate Course

MLang Modern Languages

(Translation)

MLang Modern Languages

Overview

The details
Modern Languages (Translation)
R990
October 2018
Full-time
4 years
Colchester Campus

Language is fundamental to our thoughts, our relationships, and our civilisations. Through language, we transmit knowledge, from inviting someone for coffee, to promoting the latest scientific theory, to settling global political disputes.

If you’re a high achiever with an A-level grade B in a major language, this four-year course is for you. You integrate your undergraduate and postgraduate studies into one course, graduating with an Integrated Masters in Modern Languages in four years, rather than five if the courses are taken separately.

You specialise in at least two modern languages, studying one to our highest Mastery level. Language study is combined from the third year with translation, interpreting and subtitling skills. Your progress will depend on reaching target grades each year with first class work expected.

In your first and second years, you study practical and thematic language modules to develop your language skills. French, German, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish can be studied to Mastery level, with Mandarin Chinese taken as an option. These languages are all widely used in the business world and many of our graduates have developed successful global careers with international firms.

Your third year is spent studying abroad with modules taken in language and translation. You carry out research relating to translation, interpreting and subtitling for your year abroad project, supported by your supervisor. This independent research project develops your ability to conduct research, work with complex sources of information in your chosen language and employ research methods. You also develop your analytical thinking and problem-solving skills and expand your linguistic and translation skills and communication proficiency in your chosen language. The project is the culmination of both your undergraduate studies and preparation for your final year where you take postgraduate modules.

In addition to the language skills you develop, you explore themes relating to global cultures, history, and politics to gain in-depth knowledge of the countries where the languages you’re studying are spoken. Topics include:

  • World cinema
  • Translation, interpretation and subtitling skills
  • Popular music
  • A visual history of language
  • Latin American art (with reference to the University’s art collection, ESCALA)

In your final year you return to Essex to study modules in translation, interpreting and subtitling at postgraduate level.

Why we're great.
  • Gain an undergraduate and postgraduate degree in four years, including one year studying abroad
  • We are a leading UK university for language and linguistics research (REF 2014).
  • We're Top 10 in the UK for our research quality - be part of our thriving research culture.

Study abroad

Unique to this course is your third year abroad project, which you carry out under supervision from an Essex academic.

During this year, you study abroad at one of the prestigious universities with which we have a link relating to the study of translation, learning your chosen language in a country where the language is spoken. You continue to study translation modules relevant to your course while conducting your own research for a translation studies project.

Since you’re not based at Essex for this time, the fee for this year of study is £1,350.

If you spend a full year abroad you'll only pay 15% of your usual tuition fee to Essex for that year. You won't pay any tuition fees to your host university

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.

Specialist facilities

  • Our state-of-the-art interpreting lab provides you with simultaneous interpreting booths in a professional business setting for both classwork and practice
  • You also have access to LTB 6, a conference facility for up to 350 people with simultaneous interpreting booths, for interpreting live conferences and lectures
  • 24-hour self-access to our translation lab dedicated to translation students
  • Use specialist software such as SDL Trados Studio 2015 and MemoQ for technical translation, Televic and Brähler equipment for Interpreting and WinCaps Qu4ntum for Subtitling
  • Use our professional recording studios to video record a small audience or for presentations
  • Weekly multilingual interpreting conferences, field trips and workshops led by internationally renowned experts from the industry
  • Extra-curricular activities are available through student societies
  • Our Albert Sloman Library houses a strong collection of books, journals, electronic resources and major archives
  • Languages for All offers you the opportunity to study an additional language alongside your course at no extra cost

Your future

Companies and organisations in the UK and abroad are struggling to find university graduates who are fluent in at least one other language, apart from English.

Being an Essex modern languages graduate places you in a very advantageous position. You will be able to speak and write fluently, or to a very competent standard, in up to four languages. Language skills are in scarce supply and can be used in almost any job.

Alongside skills in translation, interpreting and subtitling, you also gain key employability skills such as researching and writing for specific purposes.

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. Some become teachers, translators, administrators and journalists. Their valued language, translation, interpreting and subtitling skills have enabled them to work in diverse fields including banking, entertainment, media, education and tourism, as well as for a host of UK and international companies. In particular, this degree lends itself to a career in education, translation, interpretation, trade, PR, communications, immigration or diplomacy.

We also work with the University’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

"The seminars have been informal and fun, and we’ve been allowed to develop our linguistic ability through several types of assignments and oral examinations. At Essex, I have been particularly impressed by the number of international students and the range of activities available to students. These years will undoubtedly be the best of my life."

Gigi Capone, BA Modern Languages student.

"I loved the combination of all three practices because it provided a lot of variety and expanded my expertise in not one but several linguistic fields. I also found that it struck the perfect balance between theory and practice. My classes focused largely on collaborative learning in small groups which attributed to a dynamic, engaging and interesting learning environment."

Jenny Higgs, MA Translation, Interpreting and Subtitling, 2014.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

A-levels: ABB including B in the language that you would like to major in.

IB: 32 points including Higher Level study of the language you would like to major in. We are happy to consider a combination of separate IB Diploma Programmes at both Higher and Standard Level.

Exact offer levels will vary depending on the range of subjects being taken at higher and standard level, and the course applied for. Please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

English language requirements

English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.0 overall. Different requirements apply for second year entry, and specified component grades are also required for applicants who require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK.

Other English language qualifications may be acceptable so please contact us for further details. If we accept the English component of an international qualification then it will be included in the information given about the academic levels listed above. Please note that date restrictions may apply to some English language qualifications

If you are an international student requiring a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.

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.

Structure

Example structure

We offer a flexible course structure with a mixture of compulsory modules and options chosen from lists. Below is just one example of a combination of modules we offer for the current academic year. For a full list of optional modules you can look at the course’s Programme Specification.

Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore all modules listed are subject to change.

Our courses allow you to study up to two, three or four modern languages. The language module you study depends upon your level when you arrive in the department. We are happy to accept students with no previous knowledge of the language (unless you major in Portuguese, when an A-level pass (or equivalent) in Italian, Spanish or Portuguese or first language level fluency in Italian, Romanian or Spanish is required). Please refer to the progression pathway table to find out which modules are suitable for your linguistic profile.

Advanced French (optional)

Want to build your confidence when both speaking and writing in French? Develop your university-level French language skills, improving your aural comprehension while boosting your grammar knowledge and vocabulary. Learn to appreciate, summarise and evaluate a piece of text. Expand your understanding of French culture and society.

View Advanced French (optional) on our Module Directory

Lower Intermediate Italian (optional)

Want to be able to describe people and places in Italian? And to talk about past events? Have you already studied Italian or have a strong language background? Undertake varied tasks and activities to build your language skills and vocabulary. Improve your ability to deal with everyday situations in Italian.

View Lower Intermediate Italian (optional) on our Module Directory

Careers and Employability Skills for Languages and Linguistics

What are your skills? And how do they fit in with your career plans? Build your employability skills through this non-credit bearing but obligatory module. Attend workshops and events, engage in activities to raise your employability and build your knowledge of the graduate job market.

View Careers and Employability Skills for Languages and Linguistics on our Module Directory

Advanced Spanish (optional)

Want to build your confidence when both speaking and writing in Spanish? Develop your language abilities, expanding your vocabulary and improving your listening and oral skills. Expand your understanding of Spanish and Latin American culture and history through the use of texts, films and conversations with native speakers.

View Advanced Spanish (optional) on our Module Directory

Proficiency Level French (optional)

Are you ready to study abroad? How will it improve your French? Prepare for your period abroad by examining how your language skills will develop, alongside topics related to French gastronomy, music, and suburban life. Study literature, with a focus on creative writing and participate in assessed filmed role-plays.

View Proficiency Level French (optional) on our Module Directory

Proficiency Level Spanish (optional)

Want to improve your Spanish? Study topics related to social and historical events in Spanish-speaking societies to build your vocabulary and knowledge. Learn to interact in everyday situations, as well as in discussions on more specialised topics. Become familiar with more complex grammar, while developing your oral and written skills.

View Proficiency Level Spanish (optional) on our Module Directory

Lower Intermediate Italian (optional)

Want to be able to describe people and places in Italian? And to talk about past events? Have you already studied Italian or have a strong language background? Undertake varied tasks and activities to build your language skills and vocabulary. Improve your ability to deal with everyday situations in Italian.

View Lower Intermediate Italian (optional) on our Module Directory

Careers and Employability Skills for Languages and Linguistics

What are your skills? And how do they fit in with your career plans? Build your employability skills through this non-credit bearing but obligatory module. Attend workshops and events, engage in activities to raise your employability and build your knowledge of the graduate job market.

View Careers and Employability Skills for Languages and Linguistics on our Module Directory

Principles of Translation and Interpreting

What are your responsibilities when translating or interpreting professionally? What are the contexts in which interpreting can take place? And what tools are available to assist you when translating or interpreting? Examine the issues that face professional translators and interpreters alongside the theoretical concepts and considerations.

View Principles of Translation and Interpreting on our Module Directory

Technologies of Translation

Want hands-on experience of the key technologies that aid translation today? Become a confident user of CAT (computer aided translation) in the translation environment. Practice and develop your translation and editing skills via our practical workshops, so that you are familiar with all stages of the translation process.

View Technologies of Translation on our Module Directory

Translation Portfolio I (French) (optional)

Do you want to be a professional translator? Undertake translation assignments and tasks that develop your ability to translate between English and French. Build your practical understanding of preparing for translation and develop techniques that will aid your future translation work.

View Translation Portfolio I (French) (optional) on our Module Directory

Interpreting Practice I (French) (optional)

Do you want to be a professional interpreter? Develop the practical skills and techniques to interpret between English and French. Learn to follow and convey the logical development and essential meaning of a speech. Devise your own note-taking system and build your public speaking for future interpretation work.

View Interpreting Practice I (French) (optional) on our Module Directory

Subtitling: Principles and Practice

Want to produce accurate and reader-friendly interlingual subtitles? How do you recognise good subtitling? What skills does it require? Develop your understanding of the subtitling process. Learn to use the spotting and word-processing functions of professional subtitling software, while building your proof reading and editing skills.

View Subtitling: Principles and Practice on our Module Directory

Translation Portfolio II (French) (optional)

Do you want to be a professional translator? Undertake translation assignments and tasks that develop your ability to translate between English and French. Build your practical understanding of preparing for translation and develop techniques that will aid your future translation work.

View Translation Portfolio II (French) (optional) on our Module Directory

Interpreting Practice II (French) (optional)

Do you want to be a professional interpreter? Develop the practical skills and techniques to interpret between English and French. Learn to follow and convey the logical development and essential meaning of a speech. Devise your own note-taking system and build your public speaking for future interpretation work.

View Interpreting Practice II (French) (optional) on our Module Directory

Year abroad

On your year abroad, you have the opportunity to experience other cultures and languages, to broaden your degree socially and academically, and to demonstrate to employers that you are mature, adaptable, and organised.

Teaching

  • Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, discussion classes, role-plays and class presentations. In your Masters, it also includes demonstrations and learning by teaching others
  • We run a weekly departmental seminar, attended by both staff and students
  • State-of-the-art technologies and materials create an ideal learning environment

Assessment

  • You’re assessed through a combination of coursework (assignments, essays and tests) and end-of-year examinations.
  • Other assessment methods include quizzes, presentations, portfolios, group work, and projects.

Fees and funding

Home/EU fee

£9,250

You have the opportunity to take part in seminars delivered by DG Interpretation (DG SCIC) and DG Translation at the European Commission during our optional annual trip to Brussels. The additional cost for this is £250, depending on your mode of travel.

International fee

£14,020

You have the opportunity to take part in seminars delivered by DG Interpretation (DG SCIC) and DG Translation at the European Commission during our optional annual trip to Brussels. The additional cost for this is £250, depending on your mode of travel.

Fees will increase for each academic year of study.

Home and EU fee information

International fee information

What's next

Open Days

Our events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex. We run a number of Open Days throughout the year which enable you to discover what our campus has to offer. You have the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

Check out our Visit Us pages to find out more information about booking onto one of our events. And if the dates aren’t suitable for you, feel free to book a campus tour here.

Applying

Applications for our full-time undergraduate courses should be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Applications are online at: www.ucas.com. Full details on this process can be obtained from the UCAS website in the how to apply section.

Our UK students, and some of our EU and international students, who are still at school or college, can apply through their school. Your school will be able to check and then submit your completed application to UCAS. Our other international applicants (EU or worldwide) or independent applicants in the UK can also apply online through UCAS Apply.

The UCAS code for our University of Essex is ESSEX E70. The individual campus codes for our Loughton and Southend Campuses are ‘L’ and ‘S’ respectively.

Applicant Days and interviews

Resident in the UK? If your application is successful, we will invite you to attend one of our applicant days. These run from January to April and give you the chance to explore the campus, meet our students and really get a feel for life as an Essex student.

Some of our courses also hold interviews and if you’re invited to one, this will take place during your applicant day. Don’t panic, they’re nothing to worry about and it’s a great way for us to find out more about you and for you to find out more about the course. Some of our interviews are one-to-one with an academic, others are group activities, but we’ll send you all the information you need beforehand.

If you’re outside the UK and are planning a trip, feel free to email visit@essex.ac.uk so we can help you plan a visit to the University.

Colchester Campus

Visit Colchester Campus

We want you to throw yourself in at the deep end, soak up life and make the most of those special Essex moments.

Home to over 13,000 students from more than 130 countries, our Colchester Campus is the largest of our three sites, making us one of the most internationally diverse campuses on the planet - we like to think of ourselves as the world in one place.

 

Virtual tours

If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tours allows you to explore our University from the comfort of your home. Check out our Colchester virtual tour and Southend virtual tour to see accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.

Exhibitions

Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

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