For MA in Chinese-English Translation the Part 2 dissertation module may take the form of a long translation of 10,000 words. The direction of translation can be from English to Chinese or from Chinese to English. There should be an accompanying translation dossier of another 10,000 words consisting of two or three components (Annotation and Discussion are compulsory, Publication Plan is optional). The overall mark of the dissertation is 60% for the translation and 40% for the dossier. The source text should be something worthy of translating for the purpose of publication in the target culture on a suitable platform (e.g. Wikipedia) and will be chosen by the student and agreed upon by the supervisor. The Annotation is a series of footnotes provided by the students explaining the culture words, technical terms, and background knowledge that may help with the understanding of the target text. The Discussion is a report of the student's analysis and consideration on selected aspects of the translation project. Publication Plan is optional (pending on student word count arrangement and intention for publication) where the student discusses possible avenues for publishing the product and the skills, knowledge and procedures involved in rendering the work publishable.
Chinese Language Studies
This module introduces Chinese linguistics to students who already know the Chinese language. The primary aim is to equip students with adequate metalinguistic knowledge to pursue theory and practice in applied language studies, including translation studies and language teaching. The instruction and discussion will cover fundamental aspects of the phonology, morphology, syntax and pragmatics of the Chinese language. As a result of learning this module, students will obtain enough core knowledge in Chinese linguistics to help with both theoretical and practical pursuit of an academic or professional career related to Chinese applied language studies, such as translating and Chinese language teaching.
The essay aims to offer students a chance to consolidate their learning in linguistics theories covered in this module and to output an integrated or critical view on a certain aspect of applied Chinese language studies, for example, ¿The boundaries between morphemes, words and phrases in Chinese¿. The project, on the other hand, allows students to work in groups and to put their knowledge to practice by investigating real issues in translation or language teaching. Possible project titles are: ¿Interaction and tension between syntax and information structure in translating between English and Chinese¿, ¿Incorporating elements of critical discourse analysis in Chinese language teaching¿, and so on.
Classroom Teaching Practice (Chinese)
This is the Chinese counterpart of ENAM00 Classroom Teaching Practice, a highly successful module for MA TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) students. This module, on the other hand, is intended for students doing the MA in TCFL (Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language). Students take this module to prepare themselves for undertaking the ENAM04 dissertation option -- Professional Reflective Practice (Chinese).
The syllabus will cover:
Anticipating problems with meaning, form and pronunciation at the planning stage
Checking understanding of meaning
Classroom management (techniques and strategies)
Planning a receptive skills or a productive skills lesson
Error correction techniques
Presenting grammar through a text or a situation
Phonology and pronunciation work
Teaching basic literacy skills to second language learner
Teaching observation at both pre- and upper-intermediate level
Chinese-English Translation Theory and Practice
This module introduces translation theory relevant to translating between Chinese and English. It also teaches translation strategies and code of practice in the same area. Thirdly, the module teaches students how to match translation theory to practice in academic writing under the rubric of translation commentary. In particular, the emphasis of the module is on using discourse analysis theory and skills to analyse the source text in order to produce target text 'to the order of' the readership or publication contexts (i.e. the skopos theory). In this module, the student not only learns how to produce high-quality translations from Chinese to English or vice versa, but also becomes knowledgeable in translation and linguistic theories, as well as train themselves in academic writing.
Principles of Chinese Translation and Interpreting
This module discusses principles of translation and interpreting in light of translation competence with the intention of translating competence into performance in dealing with problems related to Chinese translating and interpreting. Competence can be understood as a combination of knowledge, skills and behavioural patterns utilised to improve performance. Translation competence, though variously defined, can include at least:
- Communicative Competence
- Extra-Linguistic Competence
- Instrumental-Professional Competence
- Transfer Competence
The nature and meaning of each of these sub-components are discussed and translated into practical terms. That is, some principles and strategies the translator should know and be equipped with while working in the field will extracted out of these discussions. Lectures will focus on the concepts and norms important to field workers in translation and interpreting; while opportunities will be offered in practical sessions to develop the skills and strategies in all these aspects of competence.
For communicative competence, discussion will focus on the ability to analyse language and its communicative functions, exploring such theories as competence vs. performance, semantics vs. pragmatics, register and genre, and so on and offering exercises for students to recognise how spoken and written languages are used to carry out speech acts necessary for successful communication in a variety of discourse settings.
For extra-linguistic competence, the importance of world knowledge to language understanding will be introduced, touching upon such issues as mental models, frames, schema and scripts, image and sound qualities, culture and technology, paratext in translating and public settings in interpreting and so on.
For instrumental-professional competence, emphasis will be on the influence of language technology on the working condition of translation and interpreting, especially machine translation, computer aided translation, technical translation, terminology management, web technology and communication technology. Key concepts and skills in these tools will be introduced and practiced to build up basic literacy.
For transfer competence, we will discuss contrasts between the two working languages (e.g. Chinese and English) and what problems and strategies are usually involved in getting the message across. Various translation methods will be discussed as well as concepts and theories in translation studies.
Media and Translation
This module explores the intersection between translation and media studies from both theoretical and practical points of view. Types of media considered are: films, TV programmes (soap opera, variety show, reality TV, news report), social media, newspapers,advertisements, and so on. Module starts from introduction to the nature and characteristics of each type of media, focusing on how language is used to express meanings and convey the message through each particular channel and environment. Different kinds of translating activities, facilities and theories are then mapped to different types of media. For example, subtitling and dubbing are specialised terms used in translating films and TV programmes with associated tools and theories. Paratext is an important notion in translating texts accompanied by images, such as news articles and social media postings, that requires specific skills and strategies. Sight translation is used to translate newspapers into spoken language on the fly, which can benefit from a psycholinguistic explanation on language processing and speech production. When translating TV commercials and advertisement on the web, it is important to consider speech act theory, cultural difference, and discourse of persuasion. In addition to media translation theory, the module also offers hands on experiences in using subtitling software and various language apps and translation aids for carrying out media translation projects.