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Translation MA,UK, Cantonese

April 20, 2013

As a non-native, English speaker in Hong Kong currently in my final year of a competitive 4-year double-degree program in English Studies and English Education, I realize that translation plays a vital role in our acquisition of English as a second or even third language. If languages serve as building blocks, then translation is the critical process of making different sets of building blocks interchangeable. I have fallen in love with my own quest to master the English especially because I have my heart set on a long and distinguished career teaching English in Hong Kong. Earning a Master’s Degree in Translation at your highly esteemed institution will allow me to earn the professional credentials that I need not only to become optimally successful as a teacher, but also to work professionally in translations involving my native Cantonese—my mother tongue.

With my over half-a-decade experience of providing private English tuition to Hong Kong children and teenagers, I have come to realise that difficulties in understanding some words, expressions or even the entire texts are the major hindrance for second language learners of English. Although equipping my students the skills to maximize their understanding in English has always been one of my ultimate teaching goals, translation of difficult words or even the entire texts from English to Chinese remains a typical task I have to carry out inevitably in almost each English tuition lesson. This is because my students are learners with low second language proficiency who require first language translation in order to understand the difficult words in second language. Despite my proficiency in English language, I am especially aware of my scant knowledge and practical skills of translation when I have to perform a decent translation between English and Chinese. Thus it is my tutoring experience that gradually shapes my interest in translation.

With the rise of China, especially marked by its entry into the World Trade Organization (WTO) and its hosting of the Olympic Games in the last decade, a surging number of international conferences and exhibitions holding in China has been witnessed. The rapid economic development and the rising international status of China indeed open up a sea of international business opportunities, which creates a tremendous demand of well-trained translators. In these favourable circumstances, I believe studying this specific program at your highly reputable University will enable me to acquire the professional knowledge and practical skills of language transfer, which offer excellent job perspectives, especially in the field.

I am convinced that the theoretical knowledge and the practical skills provided by your translation programme will greatly complement my current studies of English and Education which is based on my love and pleasure to work with languages as well as my desire to be proficient in English for it is one of the international languages that ties different nationalities together. With this translation program - something I have never studied directly before yet highly related to what I have been studying, not only will my intellectual horizons and career opportunities be widely broadened, but I will also be able to further consolidate or even sublime my multilanguage skills by creating a meaningful and efficient linkage between English and my native Chinese languages.

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