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Subtitling: Intensive Course (short course)

Why study this course?

This is an intensive course in subtitling. Languages covered are English, Spanish, French, Italian, Polish, German and Portuguese. Other languages may be considered.

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This intensive short course has been designed to introduce translators and language students to subtitling, and aims to develop your practical experience in the industry-standard subtitling software Swift.

In particular, we will:

  • give you an overview of the main characteristics of subtitling as opposed to other audiovisual translation modes and of the different types of subtitles produced nowadays
  • familiarise you with the complex semiotic essence of audiovisual texts
  • provide you with an understanding of issues that affect the production of subtitles, such as space and time constraints
  • help you explore the stylistic conventions used in subtitling
  • discuss cultural issues related to the subtitling process (eg taboo words, dialects, register)
  • develop appropriate translation strategies for dealing with technical and linguistic issues in subtitling


There is no formal assessment for this course.

Professional accreditation

There is no formal accreditation.

You will be required to have an undergraduate or postgraduate qualification in translation or languages, or experience as a professional translator.

Excellent command of English and a second language is also required.

This course is aimed at undergraduate and postgraduate students of translation and language degrees, as well as professional translators with no previous experience in subtitling.

The course consists of three sessions running on the 20 and 22 June 2018. The three sessions will be based mainly on presentations and discussions on technical, linguistic and cultural issues related to subtitling.

Some time will also be dedicated to a demonstration of the main functions of the subtitling software Swift. More emphasis will be put on this towards the end of the course, which will be focused on the actual use of Swift.

The activities are aimed at helping you to become familiar with spotting (determining when a subtitle should appear on, and disappear from the screen), timing (determining the exact time codes based upon the spotting) and reading speed.

Teaching language

  • English

Teaching times

  • 10.30am to 12.30pm and 1.30pm to 3.30pm

How to apply

For further information email or the course leader Dr Marcella De Marco at

To pay for the course, visit our secure Eshop site.

When to apply

There is no official closing date for this course, but you are advised to apply as early as possible as we will only consider your application if there are places available on the course.

Fees and key information

Short Course
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