Our research areas

The main research areas at the Institute for Interpreting and Translation Studies (TÖI) are the following:

Children and interpreting

Children both use interpreters as well as act as interpreters (language mediators or “child language brokers”) in varying contexts. Central questions in this area include which children act as interpreters, in which contexts children interpret, how children understand interpreting and how interpreting affects children. In this area, both qualitative and quantitative methods are used, and include interviews, questionnaires and field observations.

Cognitive aspects of interpreting

Interpreters use varying cognitive tools to produce their interpreting. This area investigates the interpreting process and the strategies, methods or techniques that interpreters use, as well as how they develop over time. Central concepts in the area are interpreting competence and expertise. Methods are both quantitative and qualitative and include interviews, experimental studies and questionnaires.

Cognitive aspects of translation

In this area, the translation process is studied through a number of empirical methods, to gain further insights into what the journey from source to target text looks like in different translation situations. At TÖI, the research is focussed on the appearance of the cognitive processes in various defined translation problems, as well as how cognitive processes change when translation competencies are built.

Audiovisual Translation

Audiovisual translation mainly includes research into subtitling, dubbing and voice-over, but also other forms of audiovisual translation and media accessibility, e.g. audio description for the blind and partially sighted. At TÖI, the main focus is on research into interlingual subtitling and current projects investigate how translation problems like cultural references and metaphors are dealt with in subtitled polysemiotic texts.

Speech-to-text interpreting

This method of interpreting is hitherto fairly unexplored, and hence studies are often of an explorative nature. At TÖI, the distinctive features of speech-to text interpreted texts are studied, and there is also a focus on the field of activities for speech-to-text interpreting.

Interpreter-mediated interaction in the fields of law, health, education, diplomacy, journalism etc.

Research into interpreter-mediated interaction focusses on the communicative practices and the interplay between individuals who talk/sign together in different languages with the aid of interpreters  – from specially trained people to individuals, e.g. children, who spontaneously volunteer language assistance (ad hoc interpreting). Interpreter-mediated interaction can be investigated as situated, genre-specific, communicative practice through the use of e.g. conversation analysis, multimodal analysis and narrative analysis.

Interpreter training

Research into interpreter training can focus on training methods (class room-based, web-based training etc.), methods for testing eligibility (entrance exams) and methods for assessing quality (formative/summative testing and authorization). Interpreter training studies also include studies of interpreting teacher training, as well as studies of educating consumers, i.e. professions that make use of interpreting services.

Sociology of translation

Sociology of translation is an umbrella term for research into the sociology of translation, translators and translating. Descriptivism is key to this kind of research. In this area, research topics include translations as products on international markets (e.g. translation flows in world literature), the status and working conditions of translators (e.g. the professionalization process), as well as the synchronic and diachronic study of the different phases, practices and norms of the translational action.

Translation as textual practice

Studies into how translated literary texts are marked by the linguistic and cultural norms of their time give insights into the principles, methods and strategies that translators follow, consciously or unconsciously. Manuals of literary translation theory and literal translation can also contribute towards a deeper understanding of translation practices.

Jan Pedersen. Foto: Krzysztof Gurszyński

Head of Department Jan Pedersen

Contact research

Room: D509 | Tel: 08-16 29 27

Cecilia Wadensjö. Foto: Pia Nordin

Professor Cecilia Wadensjö

Editor dissertations and writings

Yvonne Lindqvist. Foto: Pia Nordin

Professor Yvonne Lindqvist

Director of PhD Studies