Interpreting (Chinese Pathway) MA

Why choose this course

Designed in collaboration with Dr Kevin Lin OBE, this unique course will train you to be ready for your first conference interpreting job upon graduation.

This course has more opportunities for simulated interpreting practice, internships, traineeships and real-life interpreting experience than any other course in the UK.

We’re a member of the Chartered Institute of Linguists, the Institute of Translation and Interpreting, the Translation Automation User Society and the European Language Industry Association, so you’ll benefit from excellent connections and be taught to industry standards.

What you will study

The MA Interpreting is offered in two pathways: a multilingual and a Chinese pathway. The Chinese pathway is delivered in collaboration with KL Communications Ltd, whose Managing Director Dr Kevin Lin OBE is the Lead Interpreter (Chinese) of the Foreign Office of the UK Government.

Our MA Interpreting Chinese pathway covers the specific techniques and professional requirements of interpreting between Chinese and English, and prepares you to work successfully as an interpreter in conference, business and political settings at the highest levels.

You’ll learn through a combination of regular language-specific practice, simulations of real-life interpreting scenarios modules highlighting different aspects of the profession, and a background lecture.

This course pays particular attention to the emerging forms of distance interpreting, which are an increasingly important feature in the professional landscape. We’re the first university to teach remote and mobile interpreting based on research in distance interpreting, which will give you excellent and flexible career opportunities.

Course facts

Qualification Study mode Course length Placement Start date
MA Full-time 12 months October 2018

Learning and teaching on this course

Learning from experienced interpreters and academics in a supportive environment, you will join a programme which covers the main principles, specific techniques and professional requirements of interpreting between Chinese and English through a combination of regular language pair-specific practice, multilingual simulations of real-life interpreting scenarios and background lectures.

In your consecutive and simultaneous interpreting modules you will gain invaluable experience of real working conditions and have opportunities for experiential learning and reflective analysis. Our state-of-the-art facilities such as ISO-approved double interpreting booths, as used by international institutions, enable you to practise each interpreting mode in the most realistic environment possible. Our simulations are joined by professionals from a variety of fields who participate as live guest speakers on a case-by-case basis. A portable interpreting system allows for training in mobile interpreting, for instance simulating the tour of a museum, factory or plant. Our facilities also include a two-way and multipoint video-conferencing system that makes it possible to simulate remote interpreting, with clients and interpreters interacting over video link.

In modules relating to the interpreting profession, you will gain the practical knowledge, organisational and project management skills you need to perform interpreting tasks effectively. The background lecture will help you to understand the major principles of interpreting and translation, and provide you with a conceptual and methodological framework for analysing, discussing and justifying interpreting-related decisions.

Teaching staff

Our experienced academic staff with excellent research records will help you to develop a broad understanding of the current and future challenges of interpreting, while well-established, professional interpreters bring their real-world experience and standards, and their up-to-date knowledge of the interpreting market into the classroom.

Professional development

Our experienced academic staff with excellent research records will help you to develop a broad understanding of the current and future challenges of interpreting, while well-established, professional interpreters bring their real-world experience and standards, and their up-to- date knowledge of the interpreting market into the classroom.

Professional development

You will benefit from one week at KL Communications Ltd in London with a certificate upon completion.

In addition to enjoying regular contact with professional interpreters in your practice-based modules, you will benefit from course components throughout the academic year that specifically address the business and industry aspects of the profession.

You’ll also gain further insights into the industry from external guest speakers we invite to our Centre for Translation Studies seminars series. Speakers include:

  • Professional translators
  • Interpreters
  • Subtitlers and audio describers
  • Professionals working in public services
  • Companies and international organisations
  • Representatives of professional translator and interpreter associations
  • Translation and interpreting researchers.

We offer professionally relevant programmes and have forged close links with the main professional bodies. For example, we have been invited to take part in prestigious schemes such as the Chartered Institute of Linguists Higher Education Language Partnership. You can join these bodies as a student member during the course and then become a full member after you graduate.

Career prospects

Thanks to our emphasis on professional development, you will be well-equipped to begin work as an executive interpreter or Chinese communication expert at international organisations, government bodies, and private companies.

We also regularly have students who decide to stay on for a PhD and pursue an academic career in translation and interpreting studies. Our specialisms include:

  • Translation process research
  • Corpus-based translation studies and lexicography
  • Translation as intercultural mediation
  • Translation of humour
  • Dialogue interpreting and multimodality
  • World-leading research in remote interpreting.

Your dissertation project is one of many opportunities where you can get involved in ongoing research in the Centre for Translation Studies.

There’s strong international demand for high-quality interpreters in Chinese and English. The Chinese interpreting market has experienced exceptional growth despite a challenging international economic climate. Globalisation opens up new opportunities and creates demand for interpreting services to enable knowledge exchange, migration, trade and diplomatic relations, and communication between business clients. As an MA Interpreting graduate, you will be able to take advantage of global employment opportunities.

Programme leader

DAVITTI E Dr (Lit & Langs)

Terms and conditions

When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are also agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations, as well as our terms and conditions. View our offer holder terms and conditions as a guide as to what to expect (please note: the terms and conditions for 2019 entry will be available in the September prior to commencement of your studies). These terms and conditions will vary to take into account specifics of your course which will be confirmed during registration. View our generic registration terms and conditions.

Disclaimer

This online prospectus has been prepared and published in advance of the academic year to which it applies. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a course with us. Read more.

Academic year structure

Our practice-based classes are delivered by professional translators and interpreters and may sometimes have to be reschedule them to accommodate professional commitments. The course modules are delivered across two academic semesters. You can find out more details by contacting our course administrators.

The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes.

Modules

Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

Timetable

Timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday–Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week, details of which can be obtained from the course administrators. View our Timetabling Policy (PDF).

Learning and disability

We have two services, the Student Personal Learning and Study Hub (SPLASH) and Additional Learning Support (ALS) which can help develop your learning.

Student Personal Learning and Study Hub

SPLASH is a learning space in the Library where our learning development team is based. It comprises dedicated Student Learning Advisers and Information Skills Librarians who can help you develop your academic and research skills, including writing, presenting, revision and critical thinking.

Find out more about the study support available.

Additional Learning Support

ALS is the University’s disability and neurodiversity service which supports students with disabilities, long-term health conditions, specific learning differences (for example: dyslexia and dyspraxia) and other neurodiverse conditions (for example: autism spectrum and attention deficit disorder).

If you have a disability, we encourage you to disclose your condition and register with the service so you can be appropriately supported during your studies.

The ALS team can arrange exam and learning support adjustments, give advice on applications for the Disabled Students' Allowance and screen students for dyslexia and dyspraxia. Regular study skills and mentoring support is also available.

See the Additional Learning Support website for more information.

Entry requirements

This programme is designed for native speakers of Chinese (Mandarin) with English as a second language.

A BA degree equivalent to a minimum of a UK 2:2 honours degree in English or another relevant subject is required. In exceptional cases, alternative qualifications and professional experience may be considered.

As non-native speakers of English, applicants will also normally be required to have IELTS Academic 7.0 or above (or equivalent), with a minimum of 6.5 in writing and speaking and 6.0 in all other components.

In order to proceed to the aptitude test, candidates must submit a CV and a suitable personal statement explaining why they have chosen to apply for this programme at Surrey.

View entry requirements by country

English language requirements

IELTS Academic: 7.0 overall, 6.5 in Speaking, 6.5 in Writing, 6.0 in each other component (or equivalent).

View the other English language qualifications that we accept.

If you do not currently meet the level required for your programme, we offer intensive pre-sessional English language courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here. The University of Surrey is also an IELTS test centre.

Credit transfer

The University of Surrey recognises that many students enter their higher education course with valuable knowledge and skills developed through a range of professional, vocational and community contexts. If this applies to you, a process called recognition of prior learning (RPL) may allow you to enter your course at a point appropriate to your previous learning and experience, or to join the start of a course without the formal entry requirements. This means that you may be exempt from certain elements of study in the course for which you have applied and be awarded credit based on your previous qualifications/experience. There are restrictions on RPL for some courses and fees may be payable for certain claims. 

Please see the Code of practice for recognition of prior learning and prior credit: taught programmes (PDF) for further information. Please email Admissions with any queries.

Fees

Study mode Start date Placement UK/EU fees Oversees fees
Full-time October 2018 £7,300 £17,000

Please note these fees are for the academic year 2018/19 only. Annual fees will rise by four per cent (rounded up to the nearest £100) for each year of study.

View the list of fees for all postgraduate taught programmes.

Admission information

Our postgraduate admissions policy provides the basis for admissions practice across the University and gives a framework for how we encourage, consider applications and admit students. You can also read our postgraduate applicant guidance.

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