Online Postgraduate Course in English-Spanish Translation of Contemporary Literature

The Online Postgraduate Course in English-Spanish Translation of Contemporary Literature will help you specialize as a literary translator in a practical and didactic way, so that your passion also becomes your profession.

  • Literary Translation
  • online
Next edition
Classes start
03 February, 2021
Classes end
11 January, 2022
Program ends
27 January, 2022
ECTS credits
3900 €

On the Online Postgraduate Course in English-Spanish Translation of Contemporary Literature you will learn to interpret and translate literary texts such as poems, memoirs, or novels that reflect different cultural realities and genres.

With the help of translators of authors such as George Orwell, Ken Follett, or Rudyard Kipling, you will discover how to find suitable solutions to the most demanding challenges of literary translation: humour, poetry, or rhetorical resources. At the end of the course you should be able to transfer cultural references from one language to another faithfully and idiomatically, especially in areas such as religion, ideology, or ethics. In addition to translating, you will also receive training on Intellectual Property Law and the legal aspects of working as a freelance translator.

Why choose this program


Master different genres

You will learn to translate different types of literature from English into Spanish: classic, youth, fantasy, contemporary, graphic novel, among others, in order to be a versatile translator.


Acquire legal and labour knowledge for the development of the profession

You will learn about the translation aspects covered by the Intellectual Property Law: publishing contract, moral and proprietary rights, royalties, assignments, etc. You will also learn how to issue invoices, declare taxes, as well as how to promote yourself with sector-specific tools.



You will meet prestigious professionals in the sector and expand your network of contacts with other professionals in the world of translation, which will open up new job opportunities.

Who is it for?

This program is open to all who wish to make translation their profession. Being a professionalizing postgraduate degree, you can train as a translator regardless of your study profile. The translation will be from English to Spanish, which requires a good command of both.

Admission and enrolment


The course is structured in 3 blocks of knowledge. The first block focuses on the resources and keys for the practical exercise of the profession. A second block is made up of the practical workshops of the different literary genres. The third and last block is the Postgraduate Final Project. In addition, the course is complemented by 3 virtual seminars aimed at acquiring tools for the development of the translator's work.

Introduction to the practice of translation

History of translation

Compulsory teaching unit, not evaluable.

Rhetorical resources in translation

Compulsory teaching unit, not evaluable.

Comparative literature and translation

Compulsory teaching unit, not evaluable.

Keys to the professional practice of translation

This seminar has the aim of allowing the student to:

  • Get a clear perspective of the job market.
  • Understand the Intellectual Property Law and translation contracts to be able to negotiate them.
  • Get to know the relationship between the editor and the translator.
  • Know the rates of the publishing world and the different computing systems.
  • Access very practical information on initial procedures: IAE, Social Security, etc.
  • Learn to invoice and keep accounts.
  • Find out which editorial assignments are most profitable.
  • Know the professional associations and the entities for management of rights.
  • Reflect on the importance of a presence on the Internet.
  • Dismantle the myth that says that literary translations cannot provide a living.
  • Apply everything learned to the resolution of a practical case.
Legal and professional aspects of translation

The aim of this seminar is to provide a basic theoretical tool on copyright. Its recipients are the translators, understood as full authors of their own works, which are their translations.

First of all, literary translation needs to be located within the copyright source system. Why is literary translation recognized as a literary work, expressly protected by intellectual property laws? From this premise, once the condition of author is assimilated by the translator, it should be linked to the main legal figures in intellectual property: authorship, types of works, moral and economic rights, public domain and limits, paying particular attention to contracts and the correlative obligations of editors and authors/translators.

Specialization workshops

Workshop: Correction and editing of texts

The co-ordinated work between the translator and the proofreader-editor is essential to obtain a good result in the publication of a translated work. The workshop wants make contact with this real professional context, with the job of the proofreader, editor and writer, both from the perspective of the translator who delivers their work to a publisher and from the point of view of the proofreader-editor who will make its publication possible.

Workshop: Research for translation

The objective of this workshop is to learn research techniques in the digital age, assuming all the changes that have taken place in recent years in the information society, so that, at the end, each student is capable, not only of locating accurate information on the internet, but also evaluating the quality of a given source and its adequacy to our information needs at all times.

Workshop: Translation for the publishing industry

The objective of this workshop is to develop the ability to critically read your own translations in order to achieve a version that meets “publishable” requirements. With this in mind, we will have a discussion area in which some excerpts of the participants' translations will be published and where we will discuss translation errors, punctuation, style rules and writing fluency. We will also try to place them in their historical and geographical context to see which registry we use for the purpose, as we have said, of obtaining a product that meets the essential requirements for it to be published: fidelity to the original and good writing in Spanish. Where we failed, why some paragraphs are difficult to read and what we can do to improve them. From this critical reading and successive corrections we will see how a translation can be improved. Students will have to translate a fragment of a novel (The Memory Artists) by Jeffrey Moore and a fragment of an essay (The Pharaoh’s Shadow) by Anthony Sattin.

Workshop: Translation of the classics

In this workshop we will ask ourselves what is a classic and what turns a literary text into a classic work, essential questions before entering into its translation. We will try to respond to them from the hand of scholars such as Italo Calvino and with the reflections that arise in the subject forums themselves. We will focus on the study of a short story by Robert Graves and a play by Edna St. Vincent Millay, both written in the first half of the 20th century. In any case, we will insist that not all ancient texts are classics, nor do all classics have to be ancient. Along these lines, we will see examples of current novels that are based on other classics (through intertextuality) or that could aspire to "contemporary classics."

Workshop: Translation of contemporary narrative

The translation of contemporary narrative for the publishing sector is one of the main career opportunities for the literary translator. The objective of this workshop is to offer the student the opportunity to translate texts by contemporary authors and to provide relevant tools and strategies for this task. To do this, we will undertake the translation of three fragments of three stories selected by the tutor: The Lazy River by Zadie Smith, The Metal Bowl by Miranda July, and The Semplica-Girl Diaries by George Saunders.

Workshop: Translation of graphic novels and comics

This workshop is intended to offer an introduction to the translation of graphic novels and comics. The aim is for the participants to know the particularities of the translation of this medium and to take them into account when facing a translation task. Likewise, we will come to understood how the translation mechanisms of the different modalities end up being useful for any type of translation.

The workshop will consist of a brief theoretical part and a practical part. The brief theoretical block will consist of the following main points:

  • Graphic novel and comic: the particularities of the medium and its translation.
  • General translation process: working method, correction, and final delivery.
  • Bibliography.

The practical part will consist of three nuclei of activities grouped into various themes. These nuclei have different extensions: the first will be the longest, the second somewhat shorter and the third, shorter, and all consist of the translation of vignettes from various graphic novels, which seek to collect the main peculiarities of this type of translation.

Translation of fantasy and youth literature

The workshop will consist of the translation of a series of fragments of three works of fantastic literature. Some texts lend themselves to very different interpretations and solutions, and it is interesting, above all, the debate that is generated among students about possible approaches, techniques, resources, etc. Other texts do not allow the translator to take many liberties, and that raises other types of difficulties. The fragments will be translated individually, but the translation problems and the possible ways of addressing them will be discussed in the debate space.

Workshop: Spanish-English translation (reverse)

Translating into a language that is not your mother tongue is a difficult task. I tend to be sceptical and in my opinion few translators are able to carry out a satisfactory reverse translation, especially in the field of literature. But often when these translations are done in tandem, with a native speaker, the result is very good. In addition, it helps to test yourself by facing such a challenge. As T. S. Eliot said, only people who dare to go too far discover how far they can go.

So the teacher will come to this class begging to be convinced by all of you that literary translation into a non-native language is not only possible, but worthwhile. We know that it is necessary and that it can be technically achieved, but can you be a good reverse translator in the field of literature? English has become the lingua franca of our time, so I challenge you to show me that it can be done.

We will begin with a poetry translation exercise (by Ida Vitale), which involves the most direct and intense relationship we can have with language. We will also work with Leila Guerriero's texts for El País and translate a prose narration by Xuan Bello.

Workshop: Reading in Spanish

This workshop facilitates proposals and methods of approaching a more professionalized literature, which, without taking away what reading can grant, mobilizes strategies to make reading a platform prior to the work of writing or translating. The workshop, therefore, will test our capacities for text commentary as an organized reading practice in which documentation and recreation of the context as well as critical capacity and interpretation skills must be involved. The work will be based on the poem Pandémica y celeste by Gil de Biedma and the chapter A city without a river from the play Paseos con mi madre by Javier Pérez Andújar.

Workshop: Reading in English

The objective of this workshop is to offer an introduction to the writing of Ralph Waldo Emerson and to know in depth the circle of writers, artists and educators who lived together in the town of Concord (Massachusetts) in the period that goes from 1830 until the Civil War , and whose works are considered the beginning of independent American literature. Although Emerson was innovative in the literary field, his concepts were influenced by texts of antiquity (the philosophy of Plato, the Persian poets, and spiritual ideas from works such as the Mahabharata).

Transcendentalism was a radical movement that threatened established religion and government, calling for a reform of the basic ideas on which the new America was founded half a century after the Thirteen Colonies Revolution. These concepts, along with Shakespeare and the King James Version of the Bible, the cadences of which are a distinctive feature of American literature, are the basis of a tradition that follows a common line from Whitman, Fuller, Dickinson, Melville and Hawthorne, passing by Faulkner and the southern writers, Philip Roth and the American Jewish writers, the Haarlem Renaissance, James Baldwin and Ralph Waldo Ellison, up to Toni Morrison, Cormac McCarthy, Richard Ford, Marilynne Robinson, Jonathan Franzen or Rebecca Solnit.

Webinars for the practical exercise of translation

Optimization of the translation process

When translating a text, it is essential that the translator is able to optimize each phase of the process. This seminar will address a series of strategies to improve the use of time and resources during the translation and revision process: marking options and doubts during translation in order to maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of the revision; use keyboard shortcuts to save precious seconds and not depend on the mouse (ergonomics); when it is reasonable to resort to resources and when it is preferable not to do so, and which resources will return the best solution investing the least time.

Translator... Or Swiss army knife

In a book there are two raw materials: ideas and language. The translator—and other professionals—is trained to master both and, therefore, can perform various functions within the editorial process. That requires, more than knowledge, being able to adopt different perspectives of the text and, also, of the colleagues, the process and, even, the industry. Do you know, as a translator, in which phase of the editorial process you are? Are you sure you understand the difference between translating and proofreading a translation? Would you like to be a table editor? Do you think you can be a proofreader? What do you know about layout? Could you coordinate 10 or 12 people to work on the same book? Translator training is an open door to various functions; they are not the same, but they are rooted in the same knowledge and share similar interests.

Literary translation outside the traditional Spanish industry

Traditionally, the only way that book translators had to practice the profession was through Spanish publishing houses. However, globalization, the expansion of several multinationals dedicated to the book business and new technologies have opened up a range of new job options that allow us to dedicate ourselves to translation without depending exclusively on Spanish publishers.
The objective of the conference is to analyse what these options are and the main advantages and disadvantages of each one.

Final Project

Postgraduate Final Project

The Final Work must demonstrate the intellectual maturity of the student and put into practice the knowledge acquired throughout the course. This work will be supervised by a teacher and will be essential to pass the Course with the final grade being out of 10.

The theme must fit one or more of the following lines:

  • Translation history.
  • Synchronous or diachronic studies of translations.
  • Proposals for unpublished translations in Spanish or old texts with justification of their literary interest.
  • Rhetoric and translation.
  • Translation theory.

Complementary activities

BSM Inside is a transversal and interdisciplinary module, common to all master's and postgraduate degrees at UPF Barcelona School of Management, which has been conceived to work on a set of key competencies for professional development in conjunction with the real needs of today's organizations. 

This module extends throughout the academic year and is made up of 3 areas of knowledge that constitute the identity traits of the UPF-BSM: Communication; Entrepreneurship and Innovation; and Planetary Well-being and Humanities. 

All the subjects of the BSM Inside module are 100% online and have been designed as self-learning subjects: from the first day of the subject until the end of the term you will have all the teaching materials available on the eCampus and you can work with the material and the different activities that it contains at your own pace, according to your availability and in a self-organized way. 

Qualification obtained

Once you have passed the program, you will be awarded the Online Postgraduate in English-Spanish Translation of Contemporary Literature certificate, issued by the Pompeu Fabra University.


Academic directors

Olivia de Miguel Crespo

Associate Professor UPF-BSM


Bojana Veskovic Kresic


Nora Catelli Quiroga

Full Lecturer in Literary Theory and Comparative Literature at the University of Barcelona.

Valerie Miles

She publishes in The New York Times and The New Yorker.

Jose Francisco Ruiz Casanova

Tenured lecturer at the Faculty of Translation and Interpretation of Pompeu Fabra University.

Mario Sepúlveda Gutiérrez
Silvia Komet Dain
Francisco Javier Pérez Martínez
Josep Maria Fulquet Vidal

Adjunct lecturer at Ramon Llull University.

Carlos Mayor Ortega
Alicia Martorell Linares
Ana Mata Buil

Associate lecturer at the Faculty of Translation and Language Sciences of Pompeu Fabra University

José Neira Martínez
Carles Andreu Saburit

Professor of Translation at Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

Esther Cruz Santaella


At UPF-BSM we are committed to a flexible and dynamic online model, which aims to place the participant at the centre of the process so that they are the owner of their learning process.

To facilitate day-to-day management and the achievement of your academic goals, the program is structured into subjects, with which you will acquire knowledge and instrumental and aptitude skills.

All this, while having 24/7 access to the virtual environment so that you can organize your study without schedules and at your own pace. In this way, you can combine it with your work and personal life, making the most of the time you have for it.


Didactic and interactive teaching materials

We rely on materials in various formats to make your experience more motivating and challenging: videos, case studies, content maps, and downloadable resources. These materials are designed and updated periodically by professionals and experts in the field, so that you have the latest knowledge, skills, and tools at your fingertips to take your career to the next level.


Active and collaborative learning

Participation and discussion with your classmates and teachers are essential and enriching for the collaborative learning process. For this reason, we will provide you with different tools and ways to connect, such as the Discussion Forum, where you can propose new discussion topics, comment on, and respond to proposals provided by the teacher or give feedback to interesting comments.


Streaming sessions with experts

We offer videoconference sessions with the expert teacher or special guests, so that you can ask questions, discuss your learning and connect in real time as if you were all in the same place. Flexibility always takes precedence in our training, which is why we record the sessions so that you can consult them later if you have not been able to connect.


Personalized support

To make your experience more tangible and immediate, you will have the support of fundamental people such as the teacher or expert tutor, who will guide you when studying the subjects in the program. The program manager, who will help you in the monitoring and general operation of the program, as well as in the management of procedures or access to other services of the university. And the professional career advisor who will guide you in improving your personal brand and in the search for professional opportunities.


The learning process is characterized by its flexibility, since, in the virtual learning environment, the structure of the school calendar and the diversity of multimedia resources which are made available to the student allows them to acquire knowledge in a self-regulated manner.

The support of the teaching staff and interaction with classmates is carried out by making use of a wide variety of communication channels that facilitate proximity and didactic dialogue. The completion of activities and the Master's Final Project or Postgraduate Final Project is oriented towards professional practice for a high-impact professional transfer.


Professional Future

The postgraduate, after more than 10 courses, helps you throughout the process of becoming a translator. With professional teachers in the field and through practical subjects you will learn about the richness of language and the transfer of knowledge that literary translation can give you. You will master the different literary genres as well as learn to understand contracts and copyrights, to which a professional must be subject. Make your passion your profession.

Student profile

You will share a virtual classroom with students from different parts of Spain, Europe, and Latin America, all of them passionate about languages. Most come from translation and interpretation studies and various philologies, but each course also has students with other backgrounds such as humanities, history, or tourism.


Average age


Number of years of average professional experience


International students

Career opportunities

Postgraduate job opportunities contemplate several possibilities. In addition, with experience in different literary genres you can carry out different projects, without having to turn down job opportunities.

The professional profile of the translator, being mostly autonomous with project work, does not allow the option of professional internships in companies. However, you will have the support and network of professors of the course who will guide you to look for projects and networks of professionals.

  • Translation in publishers
  • Correction of texts
  • Co-ordination of editorial projects
  • Translation in organizations, institutions, or museums
  • Translation and/or adaptation of plays

Admission and enrolment

Our admission process consists of a rigorous evaluation of each application to preserve the quality of the group as well as the training, experience, and work capacity of all students.

Who can apply?

To access the postgraduate course, a university degree is necessary but it does not need to be in the field Translation.

Those participants who do not have Spanish as one of their mother tongues or who did not have it as a teaching language in their training studies, must prove that they have at least a B2 level of Spanish (Common European Framework of Reference), as well as fluently take part in a personal interview with the academic director, if necessary.

In addition, a minimum of B2 level of English is required to be able to follow the workshops.

How to apply?

To apply for admission to this program, students must read and accept the Terms and Conditions of Contract once they start the application for admission through the following form.

Application for admission

Complete your application within the next admission rounds:

RoundApplication deadlineAdmission resolution

Applications for admission will be evaluated when you complete the following steps:

  • Complete the online admission form.
  • Pay the €120 admission fee. This amount will be returned if you are not admitted.
  • Send the following documents through the online platform e-registrar:
    • Presentation letter or video
    • CV
    • Scanned copy of university degree (if you are in the last year of your degree, you can provide your academic records)
    • Scanned copy of Transcript of Records. Make sure that it includes your GPA (Grade Point Average)
    • Scanned copy of ID Card or Passport
    • Passport-size photo (jpg format)

Additional documents may be requested in certain cases.
Application rounds are subject to the number of places available on the program.


  • The Admissions Committee will select the candidates on the basis of a personal or CV-based interview.
  • You will be notified of the admission decision in writing.


  • Registration must be paid within a 15 days after the admission.
  • Once the letter of acceptance to the program has been received, you will need to submit the following original documents before the course begins:
    • Stamped and/or authenticated photocopy of your university degree.
  • If you have a foreign degree you may need to submit additional documents.
  • Paying the reservation fee (25% of the program's tuition fees) is essential in order to reserve your place
  • If you pay the tuition fees by bank transfer you will be required to introduce the program code. The program code for this course is 2324.
  • The remaining tuition fees must be paid 2 weeks before the start of the course.

Grants, scholarships and financing


The UPF Barcelona School of Management offers you different means of financing so that you can take any of our programs without worry. We offer you the opportunity to finance part of your program, either by rewarding your talent through scholarships, through grants from entities dedicated to promoting education or through collaboration agreements with financial entities.


Apply for one of our UPF-BSM Scholarships, awarded specifically to Pompeu Fabra University students with a good academic record.

Social Value Scholarships

UPF Barcelona School of Management, for this next academic year, and aiming at the commitment for social welfare, offers the Social Value Scholarships with the objective of supporting and favoring the groups that the School considers a priority. Enter and consult the details.

Grants and discounts

Alumni discounts

If you are a member of our alumni associations or of one of our partner universities, we offer you a series of applicable discounts on the amount of tuition for your program.

UPF Employee Discounts

If you are a member or family member of an employee of the UPF group or belonged to the collaborating institutions of the UPF Barcelona School of Management, you can enjoy a series of applicable discounts on the tuition fees for your program.

APTIC Discount

Professional Association of Translators and Interpreters of Catalonia Discount

DTRAD - ACE Translators

ACE Translators Discount.

Discount AATI

Argentine Association of Translators and Interpreters Discount.


Financing simulator

You can choose how to finance your studies by consulting our simulator and receive an answer in less than 24 hours.

Go to the simulator

Collaborating entities

In addition, UPF Barcelona School of Management collaborates with various banks and financial entities which provide study loans on favorable terms. For more information you can contact any of the following links (in Spanish).

Note, however, that in order to benefit from these special conditions you must have a NIE if you are not a European Citizen. Therefore, UPF Barcelona School of Management strongly recommends international students to seek first for students loans at bank entities of their country of origin, or to search for funding opportunities through international entities.

The Agency for Management of University and Research Grants of Catalonia (AGAUR, in Spanish) also offers loans to university students with legal residence in Catalonia through the PREPOST program.

Online Postgraduate Course in English-Spanish Translation of Contemporary Literature