MA in Translation: Overview in Enlgish

Department of English and American Studies Department of Romance Studies, Faculty of Classical and Modern Philology Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”

Joint Master Programme in Translation

Programme website (in Bulgarian)

Programme Description

The Joint MA Programme in Translation is a full-time taught programme lasting 3 semesters and worth 90 ECTS credits.

The Programme offers the following language combinations: English-Bulgarian, French- Bulgarian, English+French-Bulgarian and French+English-Bulgarian.

The aim of the Programme is to equip students with the scholarly knowledge and practical skills, including those related to the specifics of the local and international market of translation services and IT resources. The great number of elective courses offers students a wide range of options for specialisation in different areas of the translation profession. All courses, as well as the Internship at a translation agency, allows students to get practical training in a real-life working environment and by working with experienced professionals.

The programme is oriented towards written translation but it also offers students the opportunity to acquire initial skills in consecutive and simultaneous interpreting.

Admission requirements:
1.    A Bachelor’s degree
2.    Applicants for self-financed study must present proof that the average grade from their studies is not lower than 4.00.
3.    Applicants with a different academic background must provide a certificate of high proficiency in written and spoken English or French (or both).

The entrance exam is in two parts. The first one is the written exam. Applicants must translate a short general-purpose text in English or French into Bulgarian (applicants for specialization in both English and French have to translate texts in each language). The use of dictionaries is allowed. Those who have successfully passed the written part of the exam can proceed to the oral part. It takes the form of an interview in the course of which the applicants must show their language competence, general knowledge and communicational skills.
The lowest average grade from the two parts required for enrollment in the programme is 4.50. Admission exams are held in May and September. For details check the website of the Faculty
of Classical and Modern Philology.

Directors of the Master’s degree program in Translation:
Vessela Guenova, Ph.D., Associate Professor (Department of Romance Studies)
Zelma Catalan, Ph.D, Associate Professor (Department of English and American Studies)
Course Descriptions

First Semester

COMPULSORY COURSES

THEORY OF TRANSLATION PART I
15 hours, 3 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Elena Meteva

Course content :
•    basic approaches to translation with an emphasis on macrolinguistic and cognitive perspectives
•    key concepts in translation theory: translatability/untranslatability, equivalence, adequacy, the unit of translation, and others
•    cultural components and intercultural aspects of translation; the cultural turn in translation studies
•    levels of analysis of the source text – from macrostructure to microstructural units
•    translation strategies: transformation, pragmatic adaptation, etc.
Expected learning outcomes:
•    rationalisation and internalisation of the various parameters which play a role in creating meaning as a text is transferred from one culture to another
•    development of analytical skills and problem-solving ability in translation as a professional activity
•    a global

CONTRASTIVE LINGUISTICS (ENGLISH-BULGARIAN)
30 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Christo Stamenov

Course content:
•    Basic principles, concepts and methodology of contrastive analysis with a focus on aspects relevant to translation, e.g. comparability and translation equivalence, asymmetry, equivalence and congruence, direction of the analysis, work with dictionaries and translation corpora.
•    specific problems on the various levels of L1 and L2,e.g. problems of pragmatics and cultural differences (realia, puns, translation of names, transcription and transliteration).
Expected learning outcomes:
•    Knowledge of the basic principles of contrastive linguistic analysis and of the main linguistic and pragmatic differences between English and Bulgarian
•    Ability to take informed decisions in cases of asymmetry between English and Bulgarian; ability to analyse and comment on translations from a linguistic and translatological perspective, using the relevant theoretical and terminological toolkit

BULGARIAN LANGUAGE COMPETENCE – PART  I
15 hours, 3 credits
Assoc. Prof. DLitt Angel Angelov

Course content:
•    grammatical system and stylistic registers of Modern Bulgarian, dialectal variations

•    problems of the use of the verbal and nominal systems of Bulgarian, esp. verbal endings and participial forms; problems in the use of the article. Language asymmetries.
•    existing dictionaries of the Bulgarian language and their usefulness to the translator
Expected learning outcomes:
•    competence in the correct use of Bulgarian language in a wide variety of language practices and situations,
•    production of grammatically and stylistically adequate texts in the process of translation from English and from French into Bulgarian.

DATABASES AND TRANSLATION
15 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vessela Guenova

Course content:
•    Introduction to the basic resources for information mining, means and strategies of documentation using electronic media and especially Internet resources (e.g. EUR-LEX, IATE, Lexilogos etc.)
•    Simulation of a variety of professional situations in which students are required to apply knowledge about various online information sources, online databases and skills of information mining
Expected learning outcomes:
•    skills of identifying the need of online databases and informed use of their resources for professional translation
•    ability for efficient search in various databases and critically evaluate their applicability in any specific translation situation
•    development of a critical analytical approach to resources

ELECTIVE COURSES

TRANSLATION OF SOCIO-POLITICAL TEXTS – PART I
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Ralitsa Muharska

Course content :
•    Aspects of genre, discourse and macrostructure of texts connected with the public domain in a historical perspective
•    Issues in the translation of texts from the international public and political sphere, esp. from EU and UN institutions, the media and Internet (Part I) ; political speeches, government documents, journalism (Part II)
•    Register and terminology used in texts from the socio-political sphere
Expected learning outcomes:
•    Understanding the macrostructure and discursive features of texts in the whole range of the socio- political sphere
•    Developing strategies of solving translation problems arising from the specific register of such texts
•    Developing awareness of intercultural differences and audience expectations, recognising allusions, presuppositions and implicit meanings
•    Editing and post-editing skills
•    Skills in information mining and terminology use

TRANSLATION OF LITERARY TEXTS – PART I
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Dr. Maria Pipeva

Course content :
•    Practical work in the translation of contemporary fiction in English
•    translating dialogue in literary fiction
•    recognizing and rendering shifts in explicitness, wordplay and punning
•    translating realia, dialects and sociolects
Expected learning outcomes:
•    knowledge about the common stylistic and discursive features of contemporary literary prose in English

•    Skills in the adequate reproduction of speech in dialogue in the conditions of a different cultural setup
•    Strategies of preserving the coherence and cohesion of the literary text
•    Skills in identifying and rendering elements and forms of intertextuality and humour, translating meaningful names
•    Skills in the efficient use of dictionaries and reference materials
•    Editing and self-editing

TRANSLATION OF LEGAL TEXTS
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Dr. Georgi Niagolov

Course content :
•    comparative overview on fundamental concepts and commonly used terms and phraseology across the Bulgarian and English-speaking Company, Contract, and Property Law
•    practical work in the translation of typical real-life texts, such as court decisions, company constitutional documents, commercial contracts, notary deeds, leases and others.
Expected learning outcomes:
•    ability to understand specialised texts in the field of law
•    competence in the handling of legal terminology in English and Bulgarian
•    strategies of information mining and the use of appropriate reference materials
•    confidence in the translation of legal texts from English into Bulgarian

TRANSLATION OF MEDICAL TEXTS
30 hours, 4 credits
Tatyana Ninova, MD, BA in English Philology

Course content :
•    Introduces students to the specifics of medical and pharmaceutical texts (print, electronic and screen): aims, macrostructure, style and terminology
•    familiarises students with the Latin and Greek terminology most commonly used in medicine and pharmacology, its meaning and principles of word formation
•    offers students practice in the translation of original English-language texts across the various fields of medicine and pharmacy and illustrating the most commonly used formats and text types (discharge summaries, test results, product information, etc.)
•    offers students practice in the translation of films on medical topics
Expected learning outcomes:
•    ability to understand texts in a specialised field
•    competence in the handling of medical and pharmacological terminology
•    strategies of information mining, term extraction and the use of appropriate reference materials;
•    ability for critical evaluation of online sources
•    skills of archiving terminological data and building corpora and databases for translation purposes

TRANSLATION OF TEXTS IN THE HUMANITIES
30 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Kornelia Slavova

Course content :
•    conceptual fields and macrostructure of texts from diverse areas in the humanities (e.g. philosophy, psychoanalysis, cultural studies etc)
•    problem zones in the translation of texts in the humanities: gender and queer studies, multicultural studies and postcolonial theory
•    terminological research and term coining
Expected learning outcomes:
•    ability to understand specialised texts in the fields of the humanities,
•    competence in the handling of existing terminology and initial skills in term coining
•    strategies of information mining and the use of appropriate reference materials
•    ability to comply with conventions of academic writing and rhetoric
•    strategies of avoiding interference,

•    skills of clear writing

RECEPTION OF ENGLISH-LANGUAGE LITERATURE IN BULGARIA THROUGH TRANSLATION
30 hours, 4 credits
Prof. Dr. Vladimir Trendafilov

Course content :
•    Principles and methodology of reception studies
•    History of the reception of British and American prose and poetry in Bulgaria
•    Analysis of the reception of specific authors and works: their ways of entering and impact on the Bulgarian cultural context; the influence of the contact on the formation and evolution of the Bulgarian reader as intercultural mediator
•    Linguistic and aesthetic problems of the translation of such authors and their significance for their reception and impact
Expected learning outcomes:
•    Knowledge about the history and typology of literary translation from English and Bulgarian
•    Ability to contextualise literary translation from a historical and cultural perspective
•    Awareness of tradition and innovation in solving problems in literary translation
•    Critical awareness of the status and quality of contemporary literary translation and publishing practices

SIMULTANEOUS INTERPRETING – PART I
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Tzvetan Penevski

Course content :
•    Specifics of oral and esp. simultaneous interpreting
•    Microphone speech technique and other technology used in simultaneous interpreting
•    Techniques of simultaneous interpreting, chuchotage
•    Practical work in simultaneous interpreting using real texts
Expected learning outcomes:
•    Skills in using the technology
•    Skills in summarising spoken and written text
•    Ability to render the meaning of the original correctly and fluently
•    Improved proficiency in language A in its spoken variety
•    Team working skills.

CONSECUTIVE INTERPRETING – PART I
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Vladimir Phillipov

Course content :
•    introduces the students in a step-by-step manner through graded exercises (e.g. reading comprehension of a text, summarizing a text, taking notes, format of notes, etc.) to the analytical skills required by a consecutive interpreter
•    familiarises students with the specifics of consecutive interpreting in the various formats of bilateral and multilateral interaction, speeches, report etc. across a whole range of subjects
•    offers teaching and practice in note taking, behavior in public, speech technique and pronunciation
•    includes analysis of skills and individual progress
Expected learning outcomes:
•    Mastering note-taking and summarising skills
•    Developing the psychological aptitude needed in consecutive interpreting, incl. non-verbal behaviour
•    Improved spoken performance in languages A and B

CREATIVE WRITING
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Maria Dimitrova

Course content:
•    introduces students to the expressive potential of different stylistic modalities in English and Bulgarian written literary and non-literary texts
•    strategies of creating expressive, esp. rhetorical effects and rendering them in translating
•    criteria and forms of (peer) evaluating and reviewing textual production in a variety of genres
•    extensive practice in creative writing across commonly translated forms and genres
Expected learning outcomes:
•    heightened awareness of language variation, genre and register, alertness to overall coherence and means and strategies of achieving it
•    extended repertoire of stylistic and discursive means in one’s own text production and awareness of their effects
•    hands-on experience in developing strategies of summarising, rephrasing and restructuring texts in one language and in translation
•    ability for and metalanguage of critical analysis and evaluation of existing texts

Second Semester

COMPULSORY COURSES

THEORY OF TRANSLATION PART II
15 hours, 3 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Elena Meteva

Course content :
•    cultural approaches to translation
•    history of translation
•    translation strategies in specific genres
Expected learning outcomes:
•    rationalisation and internalisation of the various parameters which play a role in creating meaning as a text is transferred from one culture to another
•    development of analytical skills and problem-solving ability in translation as a professional activity
•    a global

TRANSLATION TECHNOLOGY: CAT AND MT TOOLS
15 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vessela Guenova

Course content :
•    systematic critical survey of the most commonly used CAT tools, their role, applicability, usefulness and limitations
•    word processors, archiving tools, CAT tools (creating, managing and working with translation memories, alignment practices, termbases – online and offline), voice recognition applications, introduction to machine translation and applications
•    simulation of professional situations requiring CAT tools where students make informed choices and apply practical skills acquired in this course and in the course of Databases and Translation
Expected learning outcomes:
•    mastery and confidence in the use of CAT tools, incl. those of SDL International in professional situations
•    ability to critically evaluate the available CAT tools and make informed choices suited to each professional translation task

BULGARIAN LANGUAGE COMPETENCE – PART  Ii
15 hours, 3 credits
Assoc. Prof. DLitt Angel Angelov

Course content:
•    continues from Part I of the course
•    emphasis on Bulgarian spelling norms and rules.
•    practical exercises
Expected learning outcomes:
•    competence in the correct use of Bulgarian language in a wide variety of language practices and situations,
•    production of grammatically and stylistically adequate texts in the process of translation from English and from French into Bulgarian.

THE ANGLOPHONE CULTURAL TRADITION AND CONTEMPORARY TEXTS
30 hours, 4 credits
Prof. T. Stoicheva, D.Litt,  Prof. Dr. Evgenia Pancheva

Course content:
•    the role and the presence of the Bible and classical mythology in the English and American cultures and their canonical texts
•    intertextuality and its functional significance in the translation of contemporary English-language texts (esp. political and literary) containing allusions and references to classical sources, esp. to the Bible and classical mythology
Expected learning outcomes:
•    raised awareness of the presence and role of the Bible and classical mythology as sources of allusion in contemporary English-language fiction and non-fiction
•    development of skills of using relevant sources for information mining and archiving resource material related to Biblical and mythological subjects in the translation from English into Bulgarian
•    development of intercultural skills in rendering Biblical and mythological allusions for the target Bulgarian audience
•    skills in annotating translated texts

ELECTIVE COURSES

TRANSLATION OF SOCIO-POLITICAL TEXTS – PART II
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Ralitsa Muharska

Course content :
•    Aspects of genre, discourse and macrostructure of texts connected with the public domain in a historical perspective
•    political speeches, government documents, journalism
•    Register and terminology used in texts from the socio-political sphere
Expected learning outcomes:
•    Understanding the macrostructure and discursive features of texts in the whole range of the socio- political sphere
•    Developing strategies of solving translation problems arising from the specific register of such texts
•    Developing awareness of intercultural differences and audience expectations, recognising allusions, presuppositions and implicit meanings
•    Editing and post-editing skills
•    Skills in information mining and terminology use

TRANSLATION OF LITERARY TEXTS – PART II
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Dr. Maria Pipeva

Course content :
•    Practical work in the translation of contemporary fiction in English

•    translating narration and description in literary fiction
•    translation of specific genres, esp. children’s literature
Expected learning outcomes:
•    knowledge about the common stylistic and discursive features of contemporary literary prose in English
•    Skills in the adequate reproduction of speech in dialogue in the conditions of a different cultural setup
•    Strategies of preserving the coherence and cohesion of the literary text
•    Skills in identifying and rendering elements and forms of intertextuality and humour, translating meaningful names
•    Skills in the efficient use of dictionaries and reference materials
•    Editing and self-editing

TRANSLATION OF TECHNICAL TEXTS
30 hours, 4 credits
Prof. Dr. Boyan Alexiev

Course content:
•    familiarises students with the specific generic macrostructural linguistic and stylistic features of technical writing
•    focuses attention on the cohesive means used in technical writing in the cultures of language A and B
•    introduces the students to the methods and procedures of term-extraction in specialised technical fields
•    offers students knowledge and practice in the compilation of terminological glossaries
Expected learning outcomes:
•    terminological and terminographic skills
•    knowledge and skills of identifying and documenting information in the technical sciences
•    technological competence in using CAT tools and online databases
•    ability to document data and organise and archive one’s own database
•    competence in translating using a register specific to the technical field

TRANSLATION OF TEXTS IN ECONOMICS
Lecturer Dr. Georgi Niagolov

Course content :
•    introduces students to the basics of economic theory and finance texts
•    basic concepts and terminology in the fields of macroeconomics, microeconomics and finance
•    extensive practice in the translation of authentic texts in the fields of macroeconomics, microeconomics and finance, as well as business correspondence
Expected learning outcomes:
•    ability to understand specialised texts in the field,
•    competence in the handling of economic and financial terminology
•    strategies of information mining and the use of appropriate reference materials

TRANSLATION FOR THE EUROPEAN INSTITUTIONS (ENGLISH–BULGARIAN AND FRENCH–BULGARIAN)
30 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vessela Guenova

Course content :
•    European institutions and their documents
•    Language departments and translation services for EU institutions; translation workflow
•    specifics of Eurospeak, and of its translation with a view to the different language levels
•    translating constraints relevant to the language of European institutions
•    translation and editing of EU texts
Expected learning outcomes:
•    knowledge of European institutions and their documents
•    good understanding of EU texts

•    ability to use the relevant terminology
•    skill in using EU on-line databases
•    attention to and monitoring quality in the translation of EU texts from French and English
SIMULTANEOUS INTERPRETING – PART II
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Tzvetan Penevski

Course content :
•    continues from Part I
•    Specifics of oral and esp. simultaneous interpreting
•    Microphone speech technique and other technology used in simultaneous interpreting
•    Techniques of simultaneous interpreting, chuchotage
•    Practical work in simultaneous interpreting using real texts
Expected learning outcomes:
•    Skills in using the technology
•    Skills in summarising spoken and written text
•    Ability to render the meaning of the original correctly and fluently
•    Improved proficiency in language A in its spoken variety
•    Team working skills.

CONSECUTIVE INTERPRETING – PART II
30 hours, 4 credits
Lecturer Vladimir Phillipov

Course content :
•    Specifics of oral and esp. simultaneous interpreting
•    more graded exercises (e.g. reading comprehension of a text, summarizing a text, taking notes, format of notes, etc.) to the analytical skills required by a consecutive interpreter
•    familiarises students with the specifics of consecutive interpreting in the various formats of bilateral and multilateral interaction, speeches, report etc. across a whole range of subjects
•    includes analysis of skills and individual progress
Expected learning outcomes:
•    Mastering interpreting skills
•    Developing the psychological aptitude needed in consecutive interpreting, incl. non-verbal behaviour
•    Improved spoken performance in languages A and B

FILM TRANSLATION AND SUBTITLING
30 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Palma Zlateva, Gergana Stoicheva

Course content :
•    introduces students to the specific semiotic structure of audio-visual texts
•    the current state and the modern perspectives of the different types of film translation.
•    hands-on practice in film translation and editing from French/English across a wide range of genres
•    hands-on practice in subtitling
•    translation for dubbing
Expected learning outcomes:
•    knowledge about strategies suitable for rendering different types of A-V texts
•    ability to select strategies according to social, cultural, linguistic and physical norms and restrictions, to recognise and render registers
•    ability to summarise and condense information
•    skills in translating dialogue
•    skills in subtitling

VERSE TRANSLATION
15 hours, 4 credits
Prof. Alexander Shurbanov, D.Litt.

Course content :
•    introduces students to the basic principles of translating verse and rendering the impact of the original
•    overview of the English and American poetic traditions and the Bulgarian poetic tradition
•    formal and stylistic levels of the poetic text; prosodic and versification systems and their traditional use in the Anglophone and Bulgarian tradition
•    comparative analysis of existing verse translations from English
•    practice in verse translation
Expected learning outcomes:
•    awareness of the specificity of verse and the role of the linguistic and cultural medium of the translation
•    awareness of the similarities and differences between the English and Bulgarian poetic traditions and prosodic systems
•    knowledge about strategies suitable for rendering different types of prosodic systems
•    ability to select strategies of verse translation and preserve the meaning and impact of the original
•    ability for independent critical analysis and evaluation of existing verse translations

GENRE, STYLE AND TRANSLATION
30 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Zelma Catalan

Course content :
•    introduces students to the genre-specific and culture-specific elements of texts
•    basic principles, concepts and terms in textual, stylistic and cultural analysis
•    identifying registers in the original text and choosing appropriate strategies and linguistic resources for rendering them in translation
•    extensive practice in the analysis of authentic texts across a range of genres and subjects: political and cultural journalism, public speeches, essays and newspaper and magazine columns, interviews and discussions, blogs, dialogue and interior monologue in literary fiction, etc.
•    practice in textual transformation and adaptation of the translated text to fit media conventions and audience expectations
Expected learning outcomes:
•    ability to recognise and analyse language variation
•    skills of close reading and analysis of texts of various genres, styles and registers
•    acquisition of an appropriate metalanguage for analysis
•    ability to present and support an argument in a paper related to translation
•    editing and proofreading skills
•    peer-reviewing and team-working skills

Third Semester
COMPULSORY COURSES

THE TRANSLATION PROFESSION
30 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Zelma Catalan

Course content :
•    direct contact with experienced professionals across the whole range of jobs and translation and management activities
•    overview of the translator’s profession today: most common types and categories of translation, kinds of jobs and statuses, professional organisations
•    organisation of the translation business; stakeholders, legal regulations, the stages and processes of translations, deadlines and time management, quality management

•    introduction to management in the areas of translation; the translation bureau and agency, free-lancing, job seeking, working for EU institutions
•    team work and professional ethics, psychological constraints, continuing education
Expected learning outcomes:
•    basic knowledge of the specifics of the translation industry and markets and their stakeholders
•    knowledge of best practices through meetings and discussions with experienced translators and managers
•    familiarisation with the basic principles of business management and launching a translator’s career; project management, business and translation ethics
•    familiarisation with the current state of the Bulgarian and international market of translation services and ability to make informed decisions about one’s place in them

TRANSLATION PROJECT SIMULATION
30 hours, 3 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vessela Guenova

Course content :
•    global simulation of the translation project: preparation, planning and implementation from the initial stage of the request of a translation service to the final one of handing the completed product to the client
•    initial lectures preparing the students for the simulation, assignment of roles and tasks
•    upon completion of the simulation, analysis of the results
Expected learning outcomes:
•    initial skills in project planning and management in the context of the translation industry, approaching clients and negotiating terms; practice in the metalanguage used in the translation service industry
•    team-working skills, time, stress and quality management and control, self-monitoring and responsibility
•    experience in a simulated real-life situation typical of the translation industry under its specific constraints .
•    practical application of the knowledge and skills acquired in the MA programme in Translation and better preparation for entering the translation profession

RESEARCH METHODS AND ACADEMIC WRITING
30 hours, 4 credits
Prof. Dr. Stoyan Atanassov

Course content :
•    basic principles of research in the humanities and specifically in the field of translation
•    methods and stages of research and its progress: choosing a topic, compiling and analysing corpora documenting data
•    The MA dissertation: analytical dissertation and the glossary compilation and critical analysis of terms
Expected learning outcomes:
•    knowledge about the principles of research in the humanities and specifically in the field of translation studies
•    academic writing skills
•    ability to plan and carry out the writing of the MA dissertation

TRANSLATION INTERNSHIP
30 hours, 4 credits
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vessela Guenova, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Zelma Catalan

Course content :
•    30 hours (1 week) of internship at a translation agency where students become familiar with the translator’s professional environment and working conditions
•    Implementation of a range of professional tasks such as translation, editing and project management
•    Familiarisation in a real-life environment with the place and role of the stakeholders in the translation industry
Expected learning outcomes:
•    practical application in a real-life professional environment of the knowledge and the range of skills acquired in the various courses in the MA in Translation
•    implementation of real tasks and heightened awareness of the responsibilities required in the various job situations related to the translation profession
•    awareness of the ethical issues of the translation profession
•    transition towards the status of a professional translator
DEGREE COMPLETION: DEFENSE OF MASTER’S THESIS

THESIS DEFENCE SESSIONS: APRIL AND OCTOBER

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