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Translator Education Programs & the Translation Labour Market: linear career progression or a touch of chaos?

  • T&I REVIEW
  • Abbr : tnirvw
  • 2017, 7(), pp.133-151
  • DOI : 10.22962/tnirvw.2017.7..007
  • Publisher : Ewha Research Institute for Translation Studies
  • Research Area : Humanities > Interpretation and Translation Studies
  • Received : April 13, 2017
  • Accepted : May 20, 2017
  • Published : June 30, 2017

Hayley King 1

1School of Global, Urban and Social Sciences, RMIT University

ABSTRACT

This paper explores the links between translator education programs and the translation labour market. These links contribute to portraying graduate career development as being linear and progressing through stages. However, careers these days are impacted by chance, opportunity and changes in circumstance; they follow a chaotic rather than linear progression. My larger project drew on sociology of education and translation studies, and involved ethnographies of one university translator education program in Spain and two in Australia. This paper draws on eighteen months of fieldwork at all three sites, which included observations, informal chats, semi-structured interviews, a questionnaire, and consideration of curriculum documents. The study revealed that a minority of learners expect to enter the translation labour market, and that there are minimal prospects of full-time translation work. These findings highlight the need for translator education programs to include employability skills that are flexible and relevant to varied labour markets, which will prepare learners for chaotic careers. Offering translator education programs concurrently with, or as an added qualification to programs from other fields could be one way of achieving this.

Citation status

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