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Irish - Arts in Translation - Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán

The next Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán course will be available from September 2020. This programme, a level 9 NFQ course, runs for three semesters.

The Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán programme is aimed at those who already have a good standard of Irish but who wish to learn translation skills or to enhance the skills they already have in that area.

General information about the course

Who is this course suitable for?

The Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán programme is aimed at those who already have a good standard of Irish, but who wish to learn translation skills or to enhance the skills they already have. It is also ideal for those who work through Irish on a daily basis – teachers and journalists, for example – who wish to improve their standard of writing in the language. The course will also benefit those who are interested in working as a translator, administrator or lawyer-linguist in one of the European institutions.

Aims and objectives

These are the aims and objectives of the Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán programme:

• to provide language training in Irish at a high level to cater for the need for a greater number of graduates who have specialised skills in the language;

• to provide training in legal translation from English to Irish to ensure that a sufficient number of people will have the appropriate skills to enable the ending of the current derogation on the Irish language as a working language of the European Union;

• to teach students the technological skills that they will require to function effectively as professional translators;

• to provide certification to students who attain a high level of competency in the written language, in grammar and in translation, thus enabling them to acquire positions in the translation, legal and Irish language sectors, as well as other sectors;

• to provide students will training and transferable skills that will enable them to operate independently on a long-term basis.

Learning outcomes

These are the learning outcomes that will be achieved by students who complete the course satisfactorily:

• They will have a comprehensive knowledge of Irish language grammar and will have high-level written skills in the language.

• They will be able to translate a range of English language texts to Irish and will have specialised knowledge regarding the translation of legal texts from English to Irish.

• They will be able to review texts that they write themselves and texts written by others.

• They will be familiar with a range of useful technological resources used in the Irish language and in the translation sector, and they will be able to use them effectively.

• They will have an understanding of translation theory.

• They will have an insight into translation as a career and will have an understanding of the practical aspects of the work.

• They will be able to use a range of research and enquiry techniques.

• They will be able to operate professionally in a range of roles in the translation and Irish language sectors.

Teaching approach

Since the number of places available on the Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán programme will be limited, participants will find it easier to ask their lecturers and tutors questions. Pair work and group work will be a central feature of all lecturers and tutorials, therefore students will have an opportunity to take a very active role in those sessions.

Entry requirements

Primary degree / Standard of English

Those who wish to apply for the course must have the following:

(1) a primary degree in Irish, or its equivalent (e.g. B.Ed.), at level 8 on the National Framework of Qualifications


a primary degree in another discipline at level 8 on the National Framework of Qualifications.

(2) At least grade B (ordinary level) or grade D (higher level) in English in the Leaving Certificate or its equivalent.

Note: Applicants who are given a place on this course must submit a transcript of their results in the primary degree.

Entry examination / Oral examination

Applicants must sit an entry examination to show their suitability for the course. This written examination, which will contain both translation and grammar questions, and applicants will have the choice of taking the exam on two different dates: Saturday, 4 July 2020 or Saturday, 29 August 2020 (2.00pm and 4.00pm on both dates).

Important: As there are only 15 places available on the course, those who take the entrance examination in July may be at an advantage. A sample examination paper is available here.

Note: Those who have passed the end of course examination in the Dianchúrsa Ullmhúcháin i gCruinneas na Gaeilge programme will not be required to sit this entry examination. If they would like gain a higher mark than that which they received in the end of course examination, however, they are welcome to sit the entry examination.

Applicants may be required to sit an oral examination as part of the entry process.

Decision regarding allocation of places

The following will be taken into consideration when places on the course are being allocated to applicants:

• academic qualifications

• answers given on the application form

• result in the entry examination

• result in the oral examination if applicable


Duration and general structure of the course

The Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán programme, which is a level 9 NFQ course (, will run for three semesters, over a fifteen-month period.

A blended learning approach will be used in the programme, featuring a combination of online study, live online classes, and lectures and tutorials in the classroom. The classroom-based sessions will be held on one Saturday a month in Coláiste na hÉireann/Gaelchultúr's headquarters in Dublin city centre, at the following times:

Semester 1 9.45am–12.00pm and 1.00–5.00pm

Semesters 2 and 3 9.30am–1.30pm agus 2.30–4.30pm

Course work

Students will have access to interactive courses on Gaelchultúr's e-learning website,, and they can use this material to prepare for the classroom sessions and the live online classes. It will also be useful to them as they revise the course work.

Students will be given written tasks to do on a regular basis and they will be asked to submit these lessons by email to their tutor. Comprehensive feedback will be provided by email. There will be a limited number of live online classes each semester; these classes will be held at night. Students will be given more information regarding the live online classes and all other aspects of the course in a handbook that will be provided at the beginning of the first semester. This handbook will also contain information about the projects students will be required to submit.

Further enquiries

For further information about the Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán programme:

• call (01) 484 5220


• write to

Subjects taught

Course modules

Accuracy in Irish (1, 2 and 3)

(30 ECTS)

This module will focus on the core aspects of Irish language grammar. The aim is to help participants improve their ability in Irish by giving them a range of grammar exercises to do in which the focus will be on common points of difficulty with the language.

There will be a particular emphasis on useful idiomatic expressions and on the importance of avoiding direct translation from English to Irish. Punctuation and editing will also be addressed, and students will be given information about the technological resources available to those who write in Irish.

Translation Skills (1, 2 and 3)

(15 ECTS)

This module aims to help students develop and improve their translation skills.

They will be taught to deal critically and analytically with the problems that often arise in English–Irish translation, e.g. jargon, register, semantic gaps and syntactic differences between the two languages. There will be an emphasis on Anglicism and how to avoid it, and the module will also look at the challenges of translating new terminology and the difficulty of translating concepts from English to Irish. There will be a particular focus on intelligibility and the importance of taking the target audience into consideration when a text is being translated.

The module will deal primarily with the types of texts most frequently translated to Irish in a professional context – annual reports and television scripts, for example – but students will also have an opportunity to translate a range of other texts, including literary texts.

Translation Theory (1 and 2)

(10 ECTS)

In the first part of this module, the main aspects of contemporary translation theory will be explored and the various types of translation that suit different genres of texts will be discussed. There will also be a focus on translation criticism in order to give students a better understanding of what constitutes a 'good translation' or 'bad translation'.

The second part of the module will look at translation as a career and students will be given practical information about working in that sector, e.g. employment opportunities in Irish and EU institutions, the work typically done in translation companies.

This module will build on the Translation Theory / A Career in Translation module and students will have a further opportunity to study translation criticism and theories of translation. They will be required to critically analyse various types of translated texts in light of those theories to assess their merit as translations and target language texts. Students will use the material from the two modules to undertake a research project: a critical essay on a text translated from English to Irish.

Legal Translation

(5 ECTS)

This module will look at legal translation in Ireland and in the EU institutions. The difficulty of translating texts of this type will be explored and there will also be a focus on register and style, constitutional questions, precedents, and decisions regarding terminology and intelligibility.

Optional Module (without ECTS credits): Translation Technology

This module aims to make students aware of the most important technological resources available to those who work through Irish and in the translation sector.

The module will aim to enable students to find information regarding Irish language grammar and terminology online so that they can write at a much higher level in the language. There will be a strong emphasis on the technological developments that have occurred over the past ten years that have implications for those working as translators. The students will be taught how to make effective use of terminology databases and there will also be a focus on translation memory software.



The course lectures and tutorials will be held in Coláiste na hÉireann/Gaelchultúr, 11 Clare Street, Dublin 2.

Application date

Deadline for applications:

Thursday, 25 June 2020 (Round 1)


Friday, 21 August 2020

Entry examination:

2.00–4.00pm, Saturday, 4 July 2020 (Round 1)


Saturday, 29 August 2020 (Round 2)

Venue: Coláiste na hÉireann/Gaelchultúr, 11 Clare Street, Dublin 2

Offers to be sent to applicants by email:

Tuesday, 7 July 2020 (Round 1)

Tuesday, 1 September 2020 (Round 2)

Course fee

Tuition fees

The tuition fee per semester is €1,495. Tax relief is available from the Revenue Commissioners ( in relation to such fees.

Enrolment and start dates

The course commences: 10.00am, Saturday, 19 September 2020

Venue: Coláiste na hÉireann/Gaelchultúr, 11 Clare Street, Dublin 2

Information sessions regarding the Dioplóma Iarchéime san Aistriúchán course*:

12.00–1.00pm, Saturday, 16 May 2020

6.00–7.00pm, Tuesday, 18 August 2020

12.00–1.00pm, Saturday, 22 August 2020

Venue: Coláiste na hÉireann/Gaelchultúr, 11 Clare Street, Dublin 2

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