Translation student in conversation
Mode of Study
Full-time, Part-time, Full-time by distance learning, Part-time by distance learning
1 year full-time, 2 years part-time, 3 years part-time
Start Date
September 2022, January 2023


If you're a language graduate or practising translator, you can take your skills to postgraduate level with this MA Translation Studies degree course. You'll learn translation skills and get the technological and theoretical knowledge you'll need for a successful career.

This is a flexible course – you can study around your existing professional and personal commitments by choosing between full-time, part-time, campus-based and distance learning options.

The full-time course lasts 1 year whether you study on campus or by distance learning. If you study part-time on campus, your course will be 2 years, while if you study part-time by distance learning, you can choose to complete the course over 2 or 3 years.

The flexible nature of this course means that you can work towards one of the following exit awards, depending on the number of credits and length of your study:

  • MA in Translation Studies (180 credits)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Translation Studies (120) credits
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Translation Studies (60) credits

When you graduate, you'll be qualified to work as a translator in the UK or abroad, or to pursue further studies, such as a PhD.

You can start this course in October/September or February/January (distance learning option only).

Entry requirements​

MA Translation Studies Master's degree entry requirements

Qualifications or experience
  • A minimum of a second-class honours degree in a relevant subject, or equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications. Applicants whose main language is English require advanced knowledge of at least one other language (Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Russian or Spanish).
English language requirements
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 7.0 with no component score below 6.5.

If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

What you'll experience

On this course you'll:

  • Specialise in translation between English and your choice of language, from Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Russian or Spanish
  • Learn the basics of staff, agency and freelance translation work
  • Choose from topics including Translation Technologies and Subtitling, Technical Communication and Intercultural Communication
  • Learn through a combination of workshops (either on campus or via distance learning), tutorials and virtual learning, including email, Skype and telephone communication with tutors
  • Combine practice and theory to get you ready for the workplace
  • Get the chance to complete a work placement report (or confirmation of prior learning) through the Professional Portfolio option
  • Graduate with a professional qualification

Careers and opportunities

What can you do with a Translation Studies degree?

Career options when you graduate include:

  • Translation project management
  • Translation
  • Freelance Translation
  • Editing
  • Copywriting
  • Further research

Other graduates have continued their studies to PhD level or set up successful businesses with help and support from the University.

Work experience and career planning

To give you the best chance of securing a great job when you graduate, our Careers and Employability service can help you find relevant work experience during your course.

We can help you identify placements, internships, voluntary roles and freelancing opportunities that will complement your studies and build your portfolio.

We'll also be available to help, advise and support you for up to 5 years as you advance in your career.

What you'll study on this MA Translation Studies degree course

Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits, depending on whether you take this course part-time or full-time, on campus or through distance learning.

To graduate with an MA Translation Studies, students must study a total of 180 credits. Full-time students will need to study modules worth a total of 180 credits in 1 year. For example, 4 modules worth 30 credits and 1 module worth 60 credits.

Part-time students on the 2-year course will study modules worth a total of 90 credits each year. In the first year, this will be a 60-credit module plus an additional core module that runs between June and September. In year 2, this will be the dissertation and 1 optional module.

Part-time students on the 3-year course will study modules worth a total of 60 credits each year. 

Core modules include:

  • Dissertation/Major Project – 60 credits
  • Critical approaches to specialised translation – 60 credits

Please note: In order to maintain the diversity of our Translation Studies programme, the language specific Specialised Translation workshops are provided online. This means that the two core Critical Approaches to Specialised Translation modules have a blend of face-to-face teaching and online lessons. This allows us to continue providing the range of languages that we do and also gives students the chance to meet and work with their peers on the distance learning version of the programme.

Optional modules currently include:

  • Intercultural communication – 30 credits
  • Professional aspects of translation – 30 credits
  • Professional portfolio – 30 credits
  • Technical communication – 30 credits
  • Translation project – 30 credits
  • Translation technologies – 30 credits

Changes to course content

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional modules may not run every year. If a module doesn't run, we'll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

Learning support

As well as support by faculty teaching staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques


Teaching methods on this course include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • 1 to 1 tutorials
  • online learning materials
  • blended learning

How you'll spend your time

Each academic year is divided into 2 teaching blocks:

  • September/October to December/January – teaching block 1
  • January/February to May – teaching block 2

How you're assessed

You’ll be assessed through:

  • translations
  • essays
  • projects

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.

Postgraduate student David Jackson

I have access to translation technologies and certificates to go with them, boosting my profile to employers. I have been able to visit many countries over Europe as part of my studies at Portsmouth and have achieved a more advanced knowledge of French and German than I thought possible.

David Jackson, MA Translation Studies student

​Course costs and funding

Tuition fees

UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students

  • Full-time (on campus) – £9,400
  • Full-time (distance learning) – £8,100
  • Part-time (on campus) – £4,700 per year (subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time (distance learning – 2 years) – £4,050 per year (subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time (distance learning – 3 years) – £2,700 per year (subject to annual increase)

EU students

(including Transition Scholarship)

  • Full-time (on campus) – £9,400
  • Full-time (distance learning) – £8,100
  • Part-time (on campus) – £4,700 per year (subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time (distance learning – 2 years) – £4,050 per year (subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time (distance learning – 3 years) – £2,700 per year (subject to annual increase)

International students

  • Full-time (on campus) – £16,200
  • Full-time (distance learning) – £8,100
  • Part-time (on campus) – £8,100 per year (subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time (distance learning – 2 years) – £4,050 per year (subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time (distance learning – 3 years) – £2,700 per year (subject to annual increase)

Funding your studies

Find out more how to fund your studies, including the scholarships and bursaries you could get. You can also find more about tuition fees and living costs, including what your tuition fees cover. 

If you're a UK student, you may be eligible for a Government postgraduate loan, which you can use to help with course fees and living costs.

Applying from outside the UK? Find out about funding options for international students.

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending. 

Additional costs

Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

You'll need to cover the travel costs for any internships/placements that you take. These vary depending on the nature of internship/placements and can range from £50 – £1000.


Start your application by following the link below:

September 2022 start

January 2023 start

International students

If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply directly to us (above) or you can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region. To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section.

If you don’t meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.