Programme Duration

Two years, i.e. 24 months (or four semesters).

Programme Objectives

The Pan African University Master of Arts in Translation is a two-year course, which aims to achieve the following objectives: 

  • Train professional translators for the African market and beyond;
  • Promote mutual understanding, peaceful coexistence and regional integration in the face of Africa’s linguistic and cultural diversity; 
  • Promote research and innovation in written language translation within the African context and beyond.

 Programme Outcomes

At the end of the degree programmes, graduates shall be able to:

  • Serve as high-level, innovative and enterprising professionals in translating content for Africa and beyond;
  • Translate content in the relevant languages for better communication among African people throughout the continent;
  • Research and innovate in written language translation for communication throughout the African continent. 

Admission Requirements

In order to be eligible for admission into the programme candidates must

  • hold a recognised university degree or equivalent (in any subject);
  • have an excellent command of their mother tongue (A language) over a wide range of topics and registers;
  • have an in-depth knowledge of their working languages (B and C), preferably African Union working languages;
  • offer at least one of the following language combinations1: A-B or A-B-C;
  • have a good overall knowledge of international affairs and be well-informed of the economic, social and cultural backgrounds of countries in which their working languages are used.
  • have a state-of-the-art multimedia computer tool with good optical character recognition devices and reliable internet connection.

In addition, candidates shall be expected to have

  • good powers of concentration, analysis and synthesis;
  • good written communication skills;
  • a high degree of motivation;
  • a good interpersonal relationship skill;
  • the ability to work under pressure; and
  • a readiness to accept feedback during training.  

Admission into the programme is subject to success in a written aptitude test which is designed to assess suitability for training in translation. The test shall include

  • Translation from B to A;
  • Translation from A to B;
  • Translation from C to A for candidates with a C language;

Additionally, the test may include

  • Use of Languages A, B and C (i.e. a language proficiency test);
  • Essay on a current-affairs topic.

1. In analogy to widely accepted requirements, professional working languages in translator training are languages of which the trainee has requisite mastery prior to training. In this respect:

Language A is the translator trainee's native language (or another language strictly equivalent to a native language), into which the translator works from all her or his other languages. 

Language B is a language other than the translator trainee’s native language, of which s/he has a very good command and into which s/he works from one or more of her or his other languages. 

Language C is a language of which the translator trainee has a complete understanding and from which she or he works.