Introduction to Subtitling


1) To acquire and develop research competences in subtitling, so that students are able to
(a) problematize key issues
(b) provide informed justification of subtitling practice.
2) To acquire and develop subtitling competences, so that students can
(a) translate audiovisual material in moderatly difficult situations for the hearing, as well as the deaf and hard-of-hearing
(b) apply relevant solutions for specific challenges of subtitling
(c) show critical understanding of different freely available subtitling software and national subtitling conventions.
3 To develop service provision and interpersonal competences, so that students know how to
(a) approach new clients and interact with fellow professional in the area, using adequade strategies and communication channels
(b) comply with the basic ethical and professional standards.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Hanna Marta Pieta Candido


Weekly - 4

Total - 168

Teaching language



Near-native (C2) competence in English; high competence with computers; your own PC or Mac with internet access. 


Carroll, Mary & Jan Ivarsson. (1998). “Code of Good Subtitling Practice.”
Díaz-Cintas, J., & Ramael, A. (2020). Subtitling: Concepts and Practices. London: Routledge.
Neves, J., (2008) 10 fallacies about Subtitling for the Deaf and the hard of hearing. Journal of Specialised Translation.
Netflix. 2020. Pivot Language Template Guidelines. (online)
Pedersen, Jan. 2016. “In Sweden, we do it like this. On cultural references and subtitling norms.” inTRAlinea 22, 24-36.
Romero-Fresco, P. (2018). Reception studies in live and pre-recorded subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing. In E. Di Giovanni & Y. Gambier (Eds.), Reception Studies and Audiovisual Translation, 199-223. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins.
Szarkowska, A., Díaz Cintas, J., & Gerber-Morón, O. (2020). Quality is in the eye of the stakeholders: what do professional subtitlers and viewers think about subtitling? Universal Access in the Information Society. Perspectives.

Teaching method

This unit will be mainly practical, combining three main teaching methods:
1) individual and team subtitling activities, with authentic audiovisual material, and a resort to three freely available subtitling software;
2) students’ oral participation during the correction of activities, as well as group discussions on the challenges, the research leading to the reflection on alternative solutions and the decision process; 3) guest-lectures on key topics by invited researchers and hands-on workshops with professionals from the Portuguse industry.

Evaluation method

Evaluation Methodologies - 4) final individual project that involves the creation and constant updating of a CV and an e-portfolio, accompanied by a reflective blogue about different aspects of the project(35%), 1) quality,regularity and punctuality of all the assignments; 2) quality and regularity of oral participation (10%+10%); (20%), 3) in-class test (subtitling activity) (45%)

Subject matter

1. Key concepts of audiovisual translation: multimodality, source text, target text, translation problem and solution.
2. History, typology and characteristics of subtitling (with particular focus on subtitles for the hearding and SDH).
3. Subtitling mechanics: spotting/time-cueing in simple and moderate scenarios; national layouts and formatting conventions.
4. Subtitling challenges: subtitling cultural references, humour and language variety.
5. Professional ecosystem of subtitling: approaching new clients (CV, electronic portfolio) and interacting with fellow professionals (professional associations and social media).
6. Ethical issues in subtitling.


Programs where the course is taught: