Note: With the exception of “Contrastive Linguistics”, “The Anglophone/Francophone Cultural Tradition” and “Genre, Style and Translation”, all other compulsory courses are offered in Bulgarian to all students irrespective of their B language.

(Part I – 1st semester; Part II – 2nd semester)
15 hours each part, 3 + 2 credits
Course content:
  • key concepts in translation theory and their diachronic evolution: translatability/ untranslatability, equivalence, adequacy, the unit of translation, translation norms, and others
  • basic approaches to translation with an emphasis on macrolinguistic and cognitive perspectives
  • 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.
  • history and models of translation reception
  • typology of translation strategies in specific genres and in translating stylistic/discursive phenomena.

Expected learning outcomes:
  • acquisition of theoretical approaches in assessing 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
  • acquisition of the appropriate metalanguage for justifying translation solutions and choices
  • developing skills for identifying the translator’s priorities with different text types and according to the target audience of the translation
  • skills of finding and justifying the balance between domestication and foreignisation appropriate to particular translation situations
  • acquiring a toolkit of approaches to translating phraseology, proverbs, metaphors, word play.
  • Part I – class participation 20%, presentation 20%, exam 60%
  • Part II – independent work 25%, tests 25%, term project 50%
(1st semester)
30 hours, 4 credits
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 languages A and B, 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 / French and Bulgarian
  • understanding linguistic asymmetry between English/French and Bulgarian and ability to make informed decisions in the process of translation from English/French into Bulgarian
  • skills in analysing and commenting on translations from a linguistic and translatological perspective, using the relevant theoretical and terminological toolkit. 
  • workshops 20%, tests 20%, term project 60%

(Part I – 1st semester; Part II – 2nd semester)
15 hours each part, 3 + 2 credits
Course content:
  • the grammatical system of Modern Bulgarian: problems in the use of the verbal and nominal systems, esp. language asymmetries with English and French in verbal tense, mood, aspect, voice, participial forms; problems in the use of the article
  • stylistic registers of Modern Bulgarian; problems of lexical usage under the impact of the Internet and the social media
  • pragmatic aspects of Bulgarian phraseology
  • recent normative changes in Bulgarian orthography and punctuation
  • existing dictionaries and databases of the Bulgarian language, and their usefulness to the translator
  • focus on the Bulgarian verb categories, their specificities and the importance of taking them into account in translation
  • extensive practice with specially designed exercises, problem-solving activities and tests.

Expected learning outcomes:
  • critical self-awareness in the professional use of language A
  • production of grammatically and stylistically adequate texts in the process of translation from English and from French into Bulgarian
  • practical experience in a wide range of Bulgarian language practices, e.g. imaginative literature and pragmatic texts, the media
  • editing and proofreading skills
  • efficient use of dictionaries and reference materials
  • class participation 20%, workshops 10%, midterm test 20%, final exam 50%

(1st semester)
15 hours, 2 credits
Course content:
  • introduction to the basic resources for information mining, means and strategies of documentation using paper sources, electronic media and especially Internet resources (e.g. Eur-Lex, IATE, CURIA, Juremy, MultiTran, 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 appropriate online databases and informed use of their resources for professional translation
  • ability for efficient search in various databases and critical evaluation of their applicability in any specific translation situation
  • ability to use efficiently offline and online information resources
  • development of a critical analytical approach to resources
  • ability to acquire and use in translation work thematic knowledge relevant to LSP.
  • workshops 30%, portfolio 70%

(1st semester)
30 hours, 2 credits
Course content:
  • updating and developing students’ skills of using word-processing programmes specifically for the purposes of translation and editing/self-editing
  • introduction to a variety of word-processors and some specialised types of word-processing and editing, e.g. annotation, summarising, formatting, editing of machine translation, etc.
  • practising the skills in a variety of situations relevant to the translation profession, and using various media.

Expected learning outcomes:
  • competence in critically assessing and choosing the most appropriate word-processing and editing tools and procedures; applying them at a professional level in any translation-related situation
  • ability to revise successfully translations in different professional contexts
  • skills in using efficiently and responsibly machine translation and post-editing of machine translation (PEMT)
  • enhanced efficiency and quality of performance in other classes in specialised translation
  • improved skills in team-working, time management and communication with co-workers and clients.
  • workshops 20%, tests 30%, portfolio 50%

(2nd semester)
30 hours, 3 credits
Course content:
  • intertextuality and its functional significance in the translation of contemporary Anglophone/Francophone texts (esp. literary, political and texts in the humanities) containing allusions and references to classical sources, esp. the Bible and other religious texts, classical mythology, art
  • the impact of the cultural tradition on decision-making in the process of translation
  • strategies of tracing such intertextual references
  • informed choices of adequate strategies of translation of allusions to classical sources, assessing the needs of the target audience

Expected learning outcomes:
  • raised intercultural awareness of the presence and role of religion, mythology and the arts as sources of allusion in contemporary Anglophone/Francophone fiction and non-fiction
  • development of skills of using relevant sources for information mining and archiving resource materials
  • development of intercultural skills in rendering Biblical, mythological and other classical allusions for the target Bulgarian audience
  • skills in annotating translated texts
  • revising, self-editing and editing skills.
  • class participation 30%, portfolio 30%, term paper 40%

(2nd semester)
60 hours, 4 credits
Course content:
  • systematic critical survey of the most commonly used CAT tools, their role, applicability, usefulness and limitations
  • archiving tools, alignment tools, CAT tools (creating, managing and working with translation memories, alignment practices, term bases – online and offline), voice recognition applications, 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, e.g. RWS Trados Studio, WordFast Anywhere, Phrase, various free CAT tools, in professional situations
  • ability to critically evaluate the available CAT tools and make informed choices suited to each professional translation task
  • ability to conduct efficiently QA checks, incl. through various CAT tools
  • ability to (co)-organise and fulfil a translation project complying with all professional requirements.
  • tests 40%, portfolio 60%

(2nd semester)
30 hours, 3 credits
Course content:
  • introduction to the genre-specific and culture-specific elements of texts
  • basic principles, concepts and terms in textual, genre, 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, such as 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 recipients expectations
  • practice in team work and collaborative learning using available digital platforms.

Expected learning outcomes:
  • ability to recognise and analyse language variation in speech and writing and in an intercultural and transmedial context
  • awareness of the dynamics of genre traditions and conventions in the source and target sociolinguistic and cultural context
  • ability to adapt a translation according to communicative needs and conventions in the target culture
  • acquisition of an appropriate metalanguage for analysis
  • skills of close reading and analysis of texts of various genres, styles and registers using the appropriate methodological tools
  • ability to present and support an argument in a spoken or written mode
  • editing and proofreading skills in languages A and B
  • self-assessment, peer-reviewing and team-working skills.
  • class participation and workshops 50%, portfolio and tests 50%

(3rd semester)
30 hours, 4 credits
Course content:
  • basic principles of research in the humanities and specifically in the field of translation; academic standards and requirements
  • methods and stages of research and its progress: choosing a topic, deciding on an appropriate theoretical framework and methodological approach, compiling and analysing corpora, documenting data, structuring the text
  • types of MA theses: peculiarities and requirements (analytical thesis; glossary compilation and critical analysis of terms)
  • evaluation criteria for the quality of research and academic writing: workshops on the academic output of previous graduands of the programme
  • preparation for the Master’s thesis defence
  • guiding each individual student in their choice of topic for the MA thesis and assisting them in approaching appropriate academic supervisors.

Expected learning outcomes:
  • practical knowledge of the basic research principles in the humanities and their application in writing an MA thesis in the field of translation studies
  • academic writing skills
  • quick orientation in choosing a topic
  • ability to plan and carry out the writing of the MA thesis that meets the academic standards of the programme
  • ability to produce, revise and QA check a compulsory chunk of translation, thematically related to the MA thesis topic
  • ability to perform to the standard expected at the viva voce.
  • class participation 20%, data-mining task 10%, oral presentation with written summary 70%

(3rd semester)
60 hours, 4 credits
Course content:
  • 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
  • presenting oneself on the market: CVs, job prospecting, job interviews, freelancing vs. in-house work
  • introduction to management in the areas of translation; the translation bureau and agency, free-lancing, job seeking, working for EU institutions
  • direct contact with experienced professionals across the whole range of jobs and translation and management activities
  • 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 for language service provision 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 through self-evaluation
  • development of strong interpersonal skills as an essential professional asset
  • workshops 25%, class participation 25%, course project 50%

(3rd semester)
60 hours, 3 credits
Course content:
  • comprehensive 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:
  • developing further skills in project planning and management in the context of the translation industry, approaching clients and negotiating terms
  • 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 
  • practice in the metalanguage used in the translation service industry
  • practical application of the knowledge and skills acquired in the MA programme in Translation and better preparation for entering the translation profession.
  • workshops 10%, group activity 10%, problem solving 80%

(2nd and 3rd semester)
120 hours, 4 credits
Course content:
  • 30 hours (1 week) of internship at a translation agency where students get direct experience of the translator’s professional environment and working conditions
  • another 90 hours of internship through a variety of flexible schemes (self-organised or assisted by the programme directors): carrying out translation/interpreting-related tasks for a translation agency, publishing house, print or online media, translation department of a company, state institution, NGO, etc.). The employer provides written feedback on the type of tasks performed and the quality of the student’s performance.
  • 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 and competences 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.
  • agency- and self-reports 30%, agency-assigned tasks and translations 70%