Perception of translation graduates on translation internships, with mixed-methods approach

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In recent years an increasing number of institutions have provided translation students with internships and/or placement as part of the curriculum. This paper presents findings from an empirical study in which a mixed-methods approach was employed to examine the perceptions and expectations of translation graduates on internships and to investigate the learning experience of translation graduates who had an internship experience. The findings suggest that internship programs for translation undergraduates should develop students' translation skills and language skills. Whether or not internships should be paid and be counted towards the grade point average were given the least importance. It was found that "career aspirations" are the most important factor when translation students select an internship agency, followed by "the reputation of the organization". A discrepancy between classroom learning and workplace practice was revealed, and this poses challenges for translation interns, who attribute the problems they encountered to the fact that the knowledge and skills they gained in university could not fulfil the needs required in the workplace. In addition, they coped with obstacles in workplace communication which are unlikely to be learnt in translation courses. Internships are thus seen to serve as a bridge between classroom knowledge and real-world practice. Copyright © 2017 Fédération des Traducteurs (fit) Revue Babel.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)580-599
Issue number4
Early online dateNov 2017
Publication statusPublished - 2017


Liu, C. F. M. (2017). Perception of translation graduates on translation internships, with mixed-methods approach. Babel, 63(4), 580-599. doi: 10.1075/babel.63.4.06liu


  • Translation education
  • Translation internships
  • Mixed-methods research
  • Translator training


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