Scientific Translation (English) - 2nd semester


This course develops the skills needed to translate scientific texts in a contemporary real-life context. The term ‘scientific’ is understood broadly to include a variety of text-types and areas: abstracts and research articles in the pure and applied sciences; academic articles in the social sciences and humanities; popular science; and medical texts of different genres and registers. Attention will be given to the following subskills: grammatical analysis of scientific/technical discourse in English and Portuguese; contrastive analysis of the major text types covered; research techniques (for terminology, text models, background information); intralingual translation between registers; critical reflection about the power relationships and ideologies affecting the translation of scientific texts in the contemporary world.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Karen Bennett


Weekly - 3 letivas + 1 tutorial

Total - Available soon

Teaching language





Bennett, Karen (2011) Academic Writing in Portugal I: Discourses in Conflict, Coimbra: Coimbra University Press
Bennett, Karen (2012) English Academic Discourse: Hegemonic Status and Implications for Translation (with particular reference to Portuguese), Saarbrucken: Lambert Academic Publishing
Byrne, Jody (2012). Scientific and Technical Translation Explained. Manchester: St. Jerome Publishing.
Fischbach, Henry (ed) (1998). Translation and Medicine. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins.
Olohan, Maeve. 2016. Scientific and Technical Translation. New York and Abingdon: Routledge
Wright, Sue Ellen and Leland Wright (eds) (1993). Scientific and Technical Translation. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins.

Teaching method

Teaching will be primarily task-based and student-oriented, though the practical experience will be used as a springboard for theoretical/philosophical reflection about issues relating to the generation and transfer of knowledge in the global world.
In class teaching

Evaluation method

Written test (30%): translation of a short text to be done in the last lesson, using all available tools and reference materials
Translation and comment of a longer text (50%): popular science article
Continuous assessment (20%): attendance, participation in lessons, homework and team tasks

Subject matter

1. Introduction to scientific discourse: the linguistic construction of objectivity; the construction of technical terminology, rhetorical organization of the text
2. Translation of academic texts: abstracts, articles, conference papers
3. Translation of popular science: register, pragmatic questions
4. Medical translation: patient leaflets, clinical guidelines, clinical trials


Programs where the course is taught: