Graduate Certificate


The goal of the Graduate Certificate in Translation Studies is to promote the interdisciplinary study of translation, encompassing its literary, social, political, economic, legal, technological and medical dimensions. As human migration and globalization alter the manner and speed of language change, translation has become increasingly central to the workings of the contemporary world. We believe now is the time to capture the new energies and map out the new fields this expanded horizon offers to us. The aim is to provide graduate students across a number of programs, departments, and divisions the opportunity to develop and demonstrate a degree of competence in translation theory, practice, and technologies. A central focus of the program will be to bring together a maximally intellectually and culturally diverse cohort of participating students each year. The Certificate program will serve the interests of graduate students looking for a competitive edge in the academic job market as well as opening doors to careers outside of academia for others.


The Certificate in Translation Studies (TS) is open to students currently enrolled in a Ph.D. program at Yale or those entering a graduate program in the upcoming fall semester.

Coursework for the certificate will primarily be completed in the second year of graduate studies, and will supplement (and in some cases, overlap with) required coursework in the students’ home departments. All coursework for the TS Certificate will need to be approved by the Director of Graduate Study of the student’s home department and the TS Coordinator, to ensure that TS requirements do not slow down time to degree. Students who have already completed their coursework and are in their fourth year or higher are not eligible for the certificate.

Requirements for the Certificate

Students who wish to receive the TS Certificate are required to complete three courses and a capstone activity:

1. Core Course: Proseminar in Translation Studies. All TS Certificate students will take the Proseminar as their shared foundational course or directed reading with one of the TS Certificate faculty. The Proseminar will balance a historically minded introduction to Translation Studies as a growing field with a multidisciplinary survey of its relationships to various fields and academic practices. This core course will be developed and taught by the TS Coordinator in consultation with the Executive Committee. The course will necessarily vary with the different background and approaches of the TS Coordinator, but the fundamental structure will remain in place each year. The Coordinator will incorporate a number of guest lectures by Yale faculty and other invited speakers to expose students to maximally diverse research and practice in the many areas surveyed by the course.

2. Two Electives: Each student will take two elective courses approved by the TS Coordinator as relevant to the student’s own research interests. One directed reading course may count as one of the electives; undergraduate courses may be modified through the addition of graduate-level work. Electives will generally consist of courses focusing substantially on topics that inform the student’s research interests within Translation Studies. Examples include: Postcolonial World Literature and Theory; Proseminar in Comparative Literature; Philosophy of Language; Language, Culture and Identity; Law and History, Law in History. The expectation is that students will select at least one elective outside of their home department or program. 

Yale already offers many courses that would qualify as Translation Studies electives at both the undergraduate and graduate level. See Current Courses for information on this year’s offerings.

3. Capstone Project. Students will be required to complete one of the following tasks for the final project in Translation Studies:

  1. An article suitable for publication;
  2. An original translation of a text approved by the TS Coordinator;


  1. A minimum of forty hours of community service in translation. Examples include interpreting with a health or social service organization or an internship with a publisher or other organization dedicated to translation, to be approved by the TS Coordinator. Building on the process developed for undergraduate internships (see the “Grants and Fellowships” page on the Translation Initiative website Grants and Fellowships and the Resource Links page for internship opportunities for graduate students with both nonprofit and profit-making organizations.

In addition, and if such teaching is available, students will be strongly encouraged to serve as teaching fellows for one semester in any course approved by the TS Coordinator.

The completion of all requirements will need approval from the TS Coordinator and DGS of the student’s degree department. By the end of their third semester at Yale, participating students will need to outline a plan for fulfilling all TS requirements in consultation with both the TS Coordinator and their home department DGS.

Tracking Progress

Students will track student completion of requirements in an online worksheet modeled on the tracking form. They will log into Yale’s CAS system to update the form each semester as appropriate. A written proposal for their capstone project, a mid-project progress report, and a final report are required, as well as brief written reports on any relevant translation work and collaborative projects to be included as part of their work for the certificate.

Students in the certificate program will be expected to attend and participate in a diverse range of talks, conferences, screenings, and other intellectual programming connected to translation throughout the year, using the reporting mechanism to note their participation.

For more information or if you have any questions, email


The application for the TS Certificate can be made at any time. It will consist of an application form (see below); a CV; and a transcript of Yale graduate coursework taken thus far. After completing the Certificate Application, please send your CV and transcript of courses taken (if applicable) in pdf format to

Graduate Certificate Summer Funding

Translation Initiative Summer Fellowships for Graduate Students

In collaboration with the Whitney Humanities Center, the Translation Initiative is pleased to offer a limited amount of summer funding to complete capstone projects, or to support important next steps in research or practice. Priority will be given to current graduate certificate students, but we may also grant available funding to other applicants with excellent and compelling cases.  Applications open on March 1, 2024 and must be submitted along with a current CV by April 21, 2024. We will notify recipients in April, 2024. In early fall, fellowship recipients will be expected to submit a brief report (no more than a page) summarizing their experiences and planned next steps. For more information, email

Translation Studies Summer Graduate Fellowship Application

The Yale Literary Translators Collective

The Collective is an ongoing workshop for literary translators at Yale working from any language into English. For more information click here.

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