Ph.D. in Translation Studies

Admission Requirements

Applications for admission to the doctoral program are accepted from students who have completed the M.A. in Translation, an M.A. in a Foreign Language,  or a Master's in any other discipline with prior experience or training in translation. All applicants must possess advanced knowledge of a foreign language. Limitations of staff and space require that admission be restricted to the most promising applicants. The deadline for admissions is February 1. In addition to regular admission procedures, departmental requirements include:

  1. A junior senior scholastic average of 3.0, and/or a grade point average of at least 3.5 during Master's studies.
  2. A score of 600 or better on the TOEFL examination or a Band of 7 on the IELTS (International English Language Testing System).
  3. Three favorable recommendations from former professors or former employers and professional colleagues (for students with prior work experience).
  4. A statement of goals and motivations for pursuing a career in translation studies.
  5. A writing sample (7-10 pages) from a research paper dealing with any aspect of translation or language; or a proposal for a possible Ph.D. dissertation topic dealing with any aspect of translation.
  6. Applicants should present proof of translation ability including one or more of the following: a translation portfolio, official or certifiable record of professional work experience, or professional accreditation credential.
  7. The Ph.D. program is normally open only to qualified individuals who can enroll as full-time students. Students meeting all other requirements for entry into the doctoral program may be permitted to enroll on a part-time basis in formal courses and seminars. Registration for "Research" and "Dissertation" is limited to full-time doctoral candidates.

Program Core Requirements

The Ph.D. in Translation Studies requires a minimum of 60 semester hours (including research and dissertation) beyond the master's degree. Of these, at least 30 hours must be for graduate credit other than research and dissertation. 24 hours of core courses are required of all doctoral students in (regardless of area of specialization): TRST 70001 Applied Linguistics, TRST 70002 Language Industry, TRST 70003 Terminology Studies, TRST 70004 Translation Pedagogy,  70005 Current Trends in Translation Studies, TRST 70006 Empirical Methods, TRST 70007 Corpora in Translation, and TRST 70008 Translation and Cognition.

After the completion of a minimum of thirty hours of coursework in the core and area of specialization as indicated below, the student must pass a written examination in the field of specialization, the form and time of the examination being determined by translation studies faculty. Those failing this examination may repeat the examination once. After passing the written examination, the student must present a detailed written proposal for his/her dissertation research. The acceptance of this prospectus by a dissertation advisory committee admits the student to candidacy for the Ph.D. degree. After the prospectus is approved, the student registers for dissertation hours, including during the summer, until the dissertation is defended.
The dissertation describes original research. The dissertation topic must be on one or more of the sub-topics within translation studies. The written dissertation is reviewed and approved by the research adviser and the dissertation advisory committee prior to scheduling a final oral examination before the committee. 

Specialization in a doctoral student program is accomplished via specific combination of elective seminars. Students must complete 6 credit hours (2 courses) in an approved combination of seminars.

List of elective seminars for PH.D. In translation 

TRST 80091 (3cr.)

Seminar in Translation Studies (Example: Histories of Translation. Detailed analysis of main trends in translation from antiquity to the present. Analysis of significant approaches to the task of translation. Discussion of representative texts from different traditions of thought, world regions, and periods).

Research (variable)

Dissertation preparation. Topic selected in consultation with the advisor


Entering students who do not demonstrate equivalent education or experience with  the content of the following M.A. level courses may be required to take one or more of these courses:

TRST 60009

Documents in Multilingual Contexts An in-depth study of the role of documents in the multilingual information cycle as manifested in word-processing, desktop publishing, and Web-based environments. The role of documents in the multilingual information cycle as manifested in word-processing, desktop publishing, and HTML for multilingual environments.

TRST 60010

Theory of Translation Introduction to translation studies including the theory of translation, translation and interpreting as a profession, and translation practice. Focus is on application of principles of translation in guided practice.

TRST 60011

Terminology and Computer applications for Translation Detailed introduction to computer-assisted terminology management and a survey of applications in translation technology and language engineering. Pragmatic application of computer aided translation tools ranging from term extraction to terminology management to translation memory.

TRST 60012

Localization Introduction to localization and internationalization for translators. Focus on the methodologies and representative functionalities involved in the localization process, with the opportunity to learn representative localization programs.

TRST 60013

Project Management Introduction to project management as it applies to language industry projects (translation and localization). Topics include nature of the language industry, work breakdown structures in the language industry including language industry tasks and activities, scheduling, costing, quality assurance and use of project management software.

Any questions regarding admission or requirements for the Ph.D. program may be addressed to Dr. Said Shiyab, Graduate Coordinator (


The courses in the Ph.D. in Translation Studies are offered on a regular two-year schedule and rotation.

View the Ph.D. schedule