Course Title: Apply theories to translating and interpreting work practices

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2012

Course Code: LANG5774C

Course Title: Apply theories to translating and interpreting work practices

School: 365T Global Studies, Soc Sci & Plng

Campus: City Campus

Program: C6111 - Advanced Diploma of Interpreting

Course Contact : Miranda Lai

Course Contact Phone: +(61 3) 9925 3523

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Mr. David Deck

Nominal Hours: 40

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

This unit covers skills and knowledge required to research, analyse and apply a range of approaches to translating and interpreting. You will explore the history, development and progress of relevant theories and their application to work assignment and practice.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

PSPTIS614A Apply theories to translating and interpreting work practices


1. Research the practiceand theory of translating and interpreting.

2. Identify the role of the translator.

3.Critique translations.

Performance Criteria:

1. Research the practiceand theory of translating and interpreting.

1.1 Analyse the concept of translation and its relevance to the study of translating.
1.2 Research key developments and key influences in the history and theory of translating and interpreting
1.3 Analyse the impact of theory on current translating and interpreting practice.
1.4 Identify key issues in contemporary study and
practice of translating and interpreting

2. Identify the role of the translator.

2.1 Analyse the cultural and political agenda of translation.
2.2 Analyse the position and positionality of the translator.
2.3 Identify the influence of the publishing industry on the translator.
2.4 Analyse the impact of the new media, localization and globalisation on translation.
2.5 Identify new directions for translation.

3.Critique translations.

3.1 Analyse aspects which have to be translated /
interpreted for work assignments
3.2 Determine the relevance and application of particular theories to work assignments
3.3 Classify and explain the procedures adopted to clients, colleagues and agencies
3.4 Analyse and constructively report on procedures, translations and interpretations

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

Lectures will aim to explain various aspects of the underlying theories and demonstrate their applicability to interpreting work practices. These will be followed by learner-guided activities designed to reinforce understanding of the concepts. These concepts will also be reinforced by activities in other language-specific courses.

Teaching Schedule

Week No.Teaching Outline
Week 1Course introduction and overview.
Assessment expectations and criteria.
Introduction to modes of interpreting, objectives of interpreting, and the communication process as it applies to interpreting.
Week 2Introduction to the principles and practice of interpreting, including good habits of interpreting, intervention by the interpreter, dealing with uncertainties, and issues with the interpreter’s role.
Week 3
Introduction to the skills required by an interpreter, including language skills, subject knowledge, and transfer skills.
Introduction to effective methods of developing these skills (including the place of note-taking in dialogue interpreting).
Week 4
Introduction to sight translating, including requirements and techniques.
Introduction to monologue interpreting, including effective listening.
Week 5
Introduction to the theory of note-taking for monologue interpreting, including Rozan’s principles.
Week 6
In-class practice and discussion of note-taking for monologue interpreting.
Week 7
Introduction to Baker’s book In other words, including the concepts of ‘meaning-based interpreting’, ‘form’ and ‘meaning’, non-equivalence of meaning, and the levels of non-equivalence.
Introduction to analysis of meaning, including componential analysis and the types of propositional meaning.
Week 8
Further analysis of meaning, including the evoked and expressive/associative layers of meaning.
Introduction to non-equivalence at the word level, including the concepts associated with lexical sets, and the reasons why non-equivalence occurs.
 Week 9
Further explanation of non-equivalence at the word level, including strategies for dealing with such non-equivalence    
Week 10
Further explanation of strategies for dealing with non-equivalence at the word level.  
Week 11
 Introduction to non-equivalence above the word level, including dealing with collocations.
Week 12Further explanation of non-equivalence above the word level, specifically in dealing with idioms, fixed expressions, and sayings.
Week 13
Introduction to non-equivalence at the grammatical level, including grammar as a way of conveying meaning, the implications for interpreters, and how to deal with non-equivalence of number, tense & aspect, and voice. 
Week 14Further explanation of non-equivalence at the grammatical level, including politeness & formality markers, gender, embedded structures, and problems with word forms.
Week 15Introduction to non-equivalence at the textual level, including cohesion markers and information focus.
Distribution of Learning Outcome 2 via Blackboard.
Week 16Introduction to non-equivalence at the pragmatic level, including coherence and implicature.

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Baker, M., In other words – a coursebook on translation, Routledge, 2011 (2nd edition)

RMIT, Theoretical Bases of T&I Reader


Ginori, H. & Scimone, E., Introduction to Interpreting: Background Notes to Interpreting as a Profession in a Multicultural Society, Lantern, 1995

Halliday, M.A.K., Cohesion in English, Longman, 1994

Hatim, B. & Mason, I., Discourse and the Translator, Longman 1994

Katan, D., Translating Cultures: An Introduction for Translators, Interpreters and Mediators, St Jerome, Manchester UL and Northampron MA, 2nd ed. 2004

Larson, M., Meaning-Based Translation, A Guide To Cross-Language Equivalence, 2nd Ed., University Press of America, 1998

Pochhacker, F., Introducing Interpreting Studies, Routledge, London and New York, 2004
Roland, R.A., Interpreters as Diplomats: A Diplomatic History of the Role of Interpreters in World Politics, University of Ottawa Press, Ottawa, 1999

Other Resources

Class notes, Power Point files and audio/video learning materials on Blackboard as directed by teacher.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment will be ongoing during the semester, and you will receive feedback on your progress. You will undertake a variety of assessment tasks and activities to assess your level of competence against key elements and performance criteria.

The assessment tasks may include, but are not limited to:

- written tests
- translation assisgments
- group discussions/debates
- practical demonstrations/assignments in which theories are applied

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task 1 Due Date: (TBA) Weighting: 40% for the course

A hand-in assignment to be completed in your own time on the concepts covered in class (please check with your teacher relevant weeks included in assessment). A series of short-answer responses totalling up to 1,000 words, will be submitted.  To do this assessment task students must be able to understand the relevant theoretical concepts and demonsrate their relevance in the short answers. 

Assessment Task 1 Due Date: (TBA) Weighting: 60% for the course
An open book classroom test covering concepts covered during the semester.  This test will be held in the last class of the semester). The test will be a series of short-answer responses to be completed in 2 hours.   In this test students need to explain and defend their answers, and demonstrate how the concepts and theories presented by the teacher affect the delivery of interpreting/translating. 

Students must achieve a minimum of COMPETENT result in both assessment tasks. Both assessment tasks will be used for grading.

Assessment Matrix

Other Information

Grading Schedule:

CHD - Competent with High Distinction
CDI - Competent with Distinction
CC - Competent with Credit
CAG - Competent with Pass
NYC - Not Yet Competent

Special Consideration:

Students may apply for Special Consideration on a range of health or compassionate grounds where they experience unexpected or extenuating circumstances. Information on ‘How to apply for Special Consideration’ can be found at;ID=b1wqvnwk8aui

Special Consideration Policy:;ID=qkssnx1c5r0y
Special Consideration Procedure:;ID=riderwtscifm

Extension of time for submission of assessable work:

Circumstances may arise which prevent students from completing an assessment task on time. In certain circumstances a student may be entitled to apply for an extension to the due date.
Extensions of 7 calendar days or less:
Students seeking an extension of 7 calendar days or less (from the original due date) must complete and lodge an Application for Extension of Submittable Work (7 Calendar Days or less) form and lodge it with the School.
Extensions of greater than 7 working days:
Students seeking an extension of more than 7 calendar days (from the original due date) must lodge an Application for Special Consideration form under the provisions of the Special
Consideration Policy , preferably prior to, but no later than 2 working days after the official due date.
Extension of time for submission of assessable work procedure:;ID=7usdbki1fjf31


Students are reminded that cheating, whether by fabrication, falsification of data, or plagiarism, is an offence subject to University disciplinary procedures. Plagiarism in oral, written or visual presentations is the presentation of the work, idea or creation of another person, without appropriate referencing, as though it is one’s own. Plagiarism is not acceptable. The use of another person’s work or ideas must be acknowledged. Failure to do so may result in charges of academic misconduct which carry a range of penalties including cancellation of results and exclusion from your course. Students are responsible for ensuring that their work is kept in a secure place. It is also a disciplinary offence for students to allow their work to be plagiarized by another student. Students should be aware of their rights and responsibilities regarding the use of copyright material.

RMIT Plagiarism Policy:;ID=sg4yfqzod48g1


RMIT University is committed to providing a harmonious study and work environment for all students and staff. The University recognises your right to raise concerns about academic, administrative or support services without recrimination and has policies and procedures to assist in the resolution of complaints.
Most issues are resolved at the local level and you are encouraged to take steps to resolve your issue locally. The student complaint procedure details steps to take if your problem is not resolved or you believe the response you received is unreasonable.

Student Complaints Policy:;ID=tk82eodesmot1
Student complaints Procedure:;ID=i1lexipvjt22
Student Complaints Form:

Course Overview: Access Course Overview