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Translation courses and workshops - Course details

The translation courses are for aspiring and professional translators.

The courses run for 8 weeks part-time. During the 8 weeks, participants must attend 8 days of face-to-face workshops, which follow one of the following formats:

  • 4x2-day workshops followed by the examination
  • 2x3-day workshops and 1x2-day workshop followed by the examination

In addition to this, participants have access to an online learning platform, Edmodo, during the entire 8-week period. Edmodo is easy to use, allows students to work in their own time, and also helps to improve knowledge of the internet and email, which are important skills in the world of work.

The contact component of the course is taught on-site at the Professional Development Hub, in close proximity to comfortable and secure accommodation. Our Student Liaison Officer will assist participants in booking suitable accommodation, from affordable homestays to luxurious guesthouses or hotels, and can assist with transport to Wits Language School as well, where needed. These costs are not included in the course fees. And if you’d like to make your trip to South Africa truly educational, we can also help you to book a safari at the Pilanesberg Nature Reserve or the Kruger National Park, for example! Shopping expeditions can also be arranged.

Contact us, send us your CV and we will determine the correct level for you! 

Translation courses and workshops - Courses offered

Translation Methods

In this course, offered at third year level (NQF level 7), students are introduced to the theory and practice of translation for a variety of text types, ranging from the technical to the creative. Practical translation skills are reinforced by critical reflection on translation problems and the selection of appropriate strategies. The methodology component covers an introduction to the translation profession, translation-oriented text analysis, translation problems/ strategies, and ethics and professional practice.

Students who receive a Certificate of Competence may receive credit for the third year module TRAN3006.

Principles and Practice of Translation

In this course, offered at Honours level (NQF level 8), we focus on the comprehensive range of practical and theoretical skills that candidates will need to work as professional translators. During this course, we not only provide you with the translating and computer-processing skills that you need, but we also train you in WordFast, a computer-assisted translation programme that will increase your employability, and ensure you know how to run a translation business, from invoicing to project management. Texts for translation reflect the typical range of texts encountered by a professional freelance translator and may include journalism, media/advertising, health/medical and general technical texts.

Students who receive a Certificate of Competence may receive credit for one module in the Honours in the field of Translation (which consists of five modules in total).


Localisation is a cutting-edge specialisation in translation offered at Honours level (NQF level 8) for those interested in translating websites, online documentation and software programmes into the language of a specific target audience.

It is also concerned with ensuring that a product’s content, style, graphics, and cultural conventions are appropriate to the country and language in which it is to be used. Participants are introduced to the theory and practice of localisation in the South African context, and carry out practical localisation tasks performed with localisation tools.

Students who receive a Certificate of Competence may receive credit for one module in the Honours in the field of Translation.

We also offer professional workshops in WordFast or sworn translation according to demand.

Translation courses and workshops - Admission requirements

You need:

  • good language skills in English and
  • good language proficiency in any of the official South African languages, South African Sign Language, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, German, Mandarin, Arabic, Shona or Swahili.
  • computer literacy (Word, internet and email)
  • a National Senior Certificate (Grade 12) or equivalent
  • to pass an aptitude test.

Translation Methods is an undergraduate course offered at NQF level 7 (third year) and the following entry requirements apply:

  • A National Senior Certificate (Grade 12) or equivalent
  • Basic computer literacy (Word, internet and email).

Principles and Practice of Translation and Localisation are both postgraduate courses and as such require:

  • A Bachelor degree or equivalent (please supply copies of qualifications) and/or
  • Professional translation experience. Experienced practitioners should submit a CV plus contactable references.

Students must pass a translation aptitude test in order to gain admission to any of the three translation short courses. A certificate of competence will be awarded upon successful completion of the course.

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Translation Methods
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