Concepts of Translation and Cultural Mediation

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The details
Language and Linguistics
Colchester Campus
Full Year
Undergraduate: Level 4
Thursday 05 October 2023
Friday 28 June 2024
20 March 2023


Requisites for this module
LA140 or LA240 or LA340 or LA440 or LA640



Key module for

BA Q911 Modern Languages Translation, Interpreting and Cultural Mediation,
BA Q912 Modern Languages Translation, Interpreting and Cultural Mediation (Including Foundation Year)

Module description

This module aims to introduce students to theories of translation and interpreting, placing an emphasis on theories that explicitly address the intercultural component of translation and interpreting, i.e. understanding translation and interpreting as a form of intercultural communication. An emphasis will also be placed on the selection of materials that will feature a wide range of genres. This is because cultural differences may manifest differently across a variety of text types, for example, literature texts or diplomatic statements. By learning about the cultural background of the material selected, students are encouraged to engage in a critical decision-making activity where they are challenged to navigate the nuances across cultural meanings and find the most suitable translation solutions.

This module takes the students a step further and encourages them to not just be translators or interpreters but intercultural mediators. To this end, text analysis, paraphrasing, condensation and summarising exercises, together with production of oral speeches, presentations (speaking in public) and short essays writing will constitute part of the module content and assessment. These tasks will also improve both language fluency and accuracy. Lectures are dedicated to the introduction of translation and interpreting theory. Seminars are language-specific and dedicated to the practice of translation and interpreting.

Module aims

The aims of this module are:

  • To prepare students to grow awareness of accuracy in text and speech analysis and production.

  • To provide students with an awareness of the multiple dimensions of meaning of written texts (both in English and in the foreign language), representing different genres and text types.

  • To introduce students to interpreters’ strategies and the skills needed to listen actively and analytically in order to memorise, summarise, interpret and communicate effectively.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module, students will be expected to be able to:

  1. Present and speak in public in both source and target languages

  2. Write summaries and short essays

  3. Analyse oral and written text in order to track main and sub ideas, implications and draw inferences

  4. Translate and interpret texts pertaining to genres of general interest (media, promotional)

  5. Reflect on context, purpose, target audience and style of texts

  6. Demonstrate competency in commenting succinctly on translation choices

  7. Listen actively and analytically, memorise short statements, predict the flow of argument, summarise and condense, use formal expression, and facilitate communication effectively in both source and target languages.

  8. Address the links between language, culture and intercultural communication

  9. Demonstrate culturally sensitive responses to intercultural mediation issues

Module information

Syllabus Information

The practical sessions on translation and interpreting will be informed by examples taken from selected sources. In particular we will focus on the following:

  • Introduction to interpreting

  • Introduction to cultural mediation

  • Introduction to translation theory

  • Translation and interpreting product and process

  • Translation as a creative process

  • Equivalence and equivalent effect

  • Strategies and procedures

  • Speaking in public

  • Discourse analysis applied to translation as intercultural communication

  • Conflict and translation: misconstruals of meaning

  • Achieving understanding through an interpreter

  • Addressing stereotypes, prejudice and (un)conscious discrimination in intercultural communication

Learning and teaching methods

This module will be delivered via:

  • 1-hour lecture (English)
  • 2-hours of practical seminars (language specific)


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography for this year.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff



External examiner

No external examiner information available for this module.
Available via Moodle
No lecture recording information available for this module.


Further information
Language and Linguistics

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