Standardisation and benchmarking for improving translator training

Christina Schäffner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The worldwide growth of the translation industry requires qualified professional translators. During the last decade, we have seen an enormous increase in translator training programmes offered by universities, mainly at postgraduate level. A challenge for such university programmes is to make sure that they prepare graduates who are qualified for the needs of the diverse profession in the rapidly changing market. This means that programmes need to be developed with the market needs in mind and that they need to ensure a good match between graduates' competences and employers' requirements. This paper addresses the following questions: How can universities adapt translator training programmes to the rapidly changing industry and the accompanying changes in professional profiles? How can we reconcile the requests of the industry for graduates who have practical and professional skills with the requests of the universities for graduates who have in-depth academic knowledge and intellectual skills? What standards and benchmarks are in place to assure quality of translator training programmes? Some such developments in respect of benchmarking are illustrated at first for the United Kingdom, followed by information on the European Master’s in Translation (EMT) project, an initiative at the European level. Finally, the paper reflects on the challenges which the EMT translator competence profile poses for university programmes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-45
Number of pages9
Journal中国翻译 [Chinese Translators Journal]
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • translator training
  • benchmarking
  • profile


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