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Working with Translation: Theory and Practice

Cardiff University via FutureLearn


Explore what it means to communicate in multiple languages.

Translation is one of the most fundamental of human activities, allowing us to interact with one another within and across cultures.

Drawing on the research and expertise of specialists at Cardiff University and the University of Namibia, on this course, you will discover a wealth of practical tips and knowledge about the nature of translation in an increasingly multilingual world.

You will explore translation in a global context, and observe translation in healthcare and the justice system as well as in music, manga, video games and historical romances. You may even discover your own ‘inner translator’ in the process!

This course is for anyone interested in language and translation.


  • What is translation?
    • What is Translation?
    • Types of Translation
    • Summary
  • Who translates?
    • Who Translates?
    • The Translation Profession
    • Translators and Translation Users
    • Beyond the Profession: Bilinguals and Multilinguals as Translators
    • Who translates? Summary
  • Where does translation take place?
    • Where does translation take place?
    • Translation between and within locations
    • Case Studies
    • Physical spaces and translation
  • What is a good translation?
    • Theoretical approaches to quality
    • Industry approaches to quality
    • Quality in specialised translation
    • Quality in literary translation
    • Quality in professional interpreting
    • Working with translation and interpreting. Course summary

Taught by

Dorota Goluch, Cristina Marinetti and Loredana Polezzi


4.8 rating, based on 132 Class Central reviews

4.8 rating at FutureLearn based on 189 ratings

Start your review of Working with Translation: Theory and Practice

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    This course carries with it a wealth of information about the topic of translation and interpretation and how we interact with and use them in our lives. It addresses difficulties, provides case studies, poses critical thinking questions, and offers a...
  • Profile image for Jagoda M
    Jagoda M

    Jagoda M completed this course.

    This course is quite interesting and offers many case studies that relate to the topics discussed, to allow you to more fully engage with the content, but the actual content about translation, such as 'who translates?', 'where does translation take place?',...
  • Anonymous
    I have really enjoyed taking this course! I have found it truly insightful and interesting, the information provided in the videos and articles is extremely relevant and I feel I have learnt so much related to the theory and practice of translation and...
  • Profile image for Nikoletta Georgieva
    Nikoletta Georgieva

    Nikoletta Georgieva completed this course.

    I found the course very enlightening, interesting and useful. It is not intended to turn you into a specialist in the field of translation, but it sure broadens one's horizons and provides a lot of insight into the different aspects of translation, both...
  • Anonymous
    This is a complete course to have an overall idea about what working with translation means.
    I currently work as a freelance translator, but this course help me to understand more about this job and also about interpretation.
  • Natalia Thomas
    I found that the course is not bad and some thing I learned for the first time. nevertheless, I expected the assignments more difficult and more interesting. I am also surprised that the tutors in Cardiff University have accents. That inspired me, as I live in Wales and every Welsh person immediately recognises my accent, which makes me very embarrassed. Now after this course I would be proud of my accent! Thank you very much!
  • Anonymous
    This is a great course! When is comes to learning languages, translation follows. Whether you've just started learning a language or have already mastered or if you're someone like me, who grew up in a country where you learn at least 3 languages right from your childhood/primary school.

    I would recommend this to not only Translators but anyone who is a bilingual or a Polyglot. It gives you good insight on how to go about translations!
  • Anonymous
    I'm glad I enrolled on this translation course. The reading materials, exercises, structure, videos and general organisation of the course are extraordinary. I'm learning a lot and I'm also amazed by the quality of it all. I would highly recommend the course to all those students interested in translation studies.
  • Alan Lado
    This course offers you a wide perspective on the translation career and experience in a concise yet thought-provoking way. The discussion steps in the comments are so enriching! The teachers are clear and their interviews really add value to the learning process. I am really glad that I joined this course!
  • Anonymous
    I absolutely loved this course. I found it very useful and it gave me so much new information about the process of translating and interpreting I was not aware of. I found the division of the course very appropriate and clear and the explanations very...
  • Anonymous
    Really interesting, useful, and packed with information, activities, and resources to become a better translator or interpreter.
  • Anonymous
    This is overwhelming and thoroughly experience that completely changed my concept about translators and interpreters.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    I'm taking this course and I like it so much that I can't stop going on, step by step, even when a week is completed! I have learned a lot about the types of translation and about what a translator/interpreter is required to be or to do. I find my coursemates' comments and findings very interesting and useful, and I really appreciate being read by the tutors, it makes me feel they are present and take our work into consideration.
  • Profile image for Luis Ribeiro
    Luis Ribeiro

    Luis Ribeiro is taking this course right now, spending 3 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.

    Good introductory course for those who are thinking of studying to be a translator/interpreter. If you're looking for tips and practical examples on how translation/interpretation is actually done, look somewhere else. The mooc just addresses important but not practical issues, such as broad definitions for translation/interpretation, what/where a T/I does/works etc.
  • Anonymous
    The aim of the course is to provide learners with an overview of how translation as a profession is carried out. It therefore focuses on several aspects of translating and interpreting from both a theoretical and practical point of view. as such it provides...
  • Anonymous
    I found this course to be really interesting, well structured and easy to follow along. I’ve done translating here and there for friends and family, but never studied anything about it and wanted to get some more insight on the profession. I enjoyed the articles, videos and chat sections throughout the lessons. The professors and mentors take the time to engage with the students and give thoughtful replies. They give interesting advice all along the way. I highly recommend.
  • Anonymous
    This course is beyond my expectation. I found that this 4-week training really enlightens me in the way I see translation and interpretation. I really like the videos of many resources from many background knowledge, from many parts of the world I have never seen and heard before. It's also exciting listening to their experiences as translators, interpreters, court interpreters, lecturers, and multilingual speakers. Thank you for allowing me to join this course.
  • Anonymous
    This course is excellent whether you are interested in starting a career as translator and/or interpreter or you'are already a translator and interpreter, as it makes you look at concepts you work with everyday from a different perspective. The couse balances good theoretical aspects and practical ideas and activities, so that you never lose interest in what you are confronted with. I really recommend it!
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Thanks for the good and informative content :). Was great to learn new content and share experiences with interpreters around the world.
  • Profile image for Ana Sofia Velasco Reynoso
    Ana Sofia Velasco Reynoso
    I really enjoyed this course. It is a pretty complete insight of what translation is, and the terminology used in the field. They also use really interesting examples throughout the course, rather than sticking with the common, expected ones. The course really shows more of the translation world, with interesting informed content and interviews, along other materials.

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