module specification

TR6002 - Specialist Translation Domains (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23
Module title Specialist Translation Domains
Module level Honours (06)
Credit rating for module 30
School Guildhall School of Business and Law
Total study hours 300
240 hours Guided independent study
60 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   Portfolio (5000 words)
Coursework 0%   Essay on the skills developed throughout the first block
Running in 2022/23

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
No instances running in the year

Module summary

In this module, students are exposed to the specific requirements for the translation of texts belonging to specialist areas, e.g. business, medicine, IT, law, multimedia areas such as television programmes, video games, comics, and the literary field such as the translation of children literature and fiction. Students are introduced to the characteristics of texts from these specialist domains and are familiarised with types, terminology, stylistic features, structure and the constraints imposed by the medium on the translation process. The module therefore focuses on two main domains encompassing specialist areas and fields:
1. Technical/Applied Domains
2. Multimedia/Literary Domains

Prior learning requirements

TR5001 (Translation Process and Procedures)


The module is delivered through lectures and seminars (1 hr lecture + 1 hour seminar). Most domains are allocated two weeks (4 hours). Some sessions are run by guest lecturers with expertise in the relevant field.
The first block (week 1 to 15) is taught in the evening, whereas the second block (week 16 to 30) is taught in daytime. The flexibility of teaching time is to make sure students at level 6 can attend their placement in the first half of the module.
Throughout the course of the module, students are introduced to a wide range of specialist translation domains (Audiovisual, IT, Medical, Legal, etc). For each domain, students focus on:
1. a strategic text analysis, identifying characteristic terminology, structure and stylistic features of texts from different fields of knowledge, LO1
2. evaluating the constraints posed on these texts by typology, medium, and so forth, while anticipating translation problems and solving these with appropriate procedures. LO2

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

This is an in-class taught module, with a variety of student and teacher-led activities. Source text analysis seminars, text-based exercises anticipating translation problems, and lectures introducing the several specialist areas are used throughout.
WebLearn is used throughout for teaching and learning and the moderated discussion forum tool on WebLearn will enable students to continue topic discussions initiated during seminars/lectures. WebLearn tasks are set for guided independent work on students’ portfolio.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:
1. Identify and discuss the characteristic terminology, structure and stylistic features of texts from different fields of specialised knowledge, and analyse what constraints need to be considered in the translation process.
2. Evaluate and apply appropriate strategies and procedures to solve translation problems specific to specialised texts.

Assessment strategy

There are two pieces of assessment, one of which is formative only: by Week 15 students will have to choose two texts from the domains covered in the first 14 weeks and show that that they can analyse them in terms of domain-specific features. The feedback they receive two weeks after will help them improve their approach towards the main piece of assessment due in Week 30.

Main assessment component: Portfolio (5000 words: 2000 words for texts to be selected + 3000-word commentary).
Students create a portfolio of texts from 4 different domains, in which they analyse and discuss domain-specific characteristics, the main domain-specific problems in the texts and medium constraints (if applicable) and document what resources they would have to use and research in order to find solutions for these problems.
In one of the texts, they also identify 4 problems (medium-related, style-related, genre-related, terminology and phraseology-related) and discuss the translation strategies and procedures they would apply to solve these problems.

The choice of this assessment method is informed by consideration of the professional practice and the requirements that employers look for when recruiting translators of specialist texts.
The formative assessment fully supports students in developing for the summative assessment as they make the most of the feedback provided by the lecturer and have the time to improve and enrich the analysis in their portfolio.


Since this module ranges over different specialisations, there are no textbooks/core readings. Students select the relevant readings based on the selection of texts to be used for their portfolio.

Other Texts:
Boase-Beier, J. and Holman, M. (eds.) (1999) The practices of literary translation: constraints  and creativity. Manchester: St Jerome. 
Byrne, J. (2006) Technical translation: usability strategies for translating technical  documentation. Dordrecht: Springer.
Declercq, C. (2011) ‘Advertising and localization’, in Malmkjær, K. and Windle, K. (eds.) The  Oxford handbook of translation studies. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press,  pp.262-274.
Desblache, L. (2001) Aspects of specialised translation. Paris: La Maison du Dictionnaire.
Díaz-Cintas, J. and Ramael, A. (2007) Audiovisual translation: subtitling. Manchester: St.  Jerome Publishing.
Esselink, B. (2000) A practical guide to localization. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John  Benjamins.
Lathey, G. (ed.) (2006) The translation of children’s literature: a reader. Clevedon: Multilingual  Matters.
Montalt, V. and González Davies, M. (2007) Medical translation step by step: learning by  drafting, Manchester: St. Jerome.
Orero, P. (ed.) (2004) Topics in audiovisual translation. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John  Benjamins.
Perteghella, M. and Loffredo, E. (eds.) (2006) Translation and creative writing: perspectives on  creative writing and translation studies. London and New York: Continuum.
Wright, S.E. and Wright, L.D. (1993) Scientific and technical translation. Amsterdam: John  Benjamins.

Adab, B. and Valdés, C. (eds.) (2004), ‘Key debates in the translation of advertising material’,  The Translator . Special issue, 10(2).
The Journal of Specialised Translation: Available at: