Graduate Certificate in Critical Translation Studies

The Department of Comparative Literature offers a graduate certificate in Critical Translation Studies. Designed for students already enrolled in any terminal degree program at the University of Michigan, the Certificate in Critical Translation Studies consists of graduate course work totaling 12 credit hours, a portion of which may be double-counted with coursework undertaken in the student’s primary field of study, in accordance with Rackham guidelines.


Applications are submitted to Translation Studies Advisor: (

Admission to the Certificate program is granted on a rolling basis, meaning students are encouraged to apply at any time. However, students who plan to pursue the certificate are encouraged to apply as early in their programs as possible. (One term of U-M graduate study must be completed prior to the applicant’s designated term of admission.) Applicants must be in good academic standing and have written approval from the graduate adviser in their program.

At the time of application, students must submit the following materials:

  • Application cover page for Graduate Certificate in Critical Translation Studies
  • A 300-500 word statement of purpose explaining interest in the Certificate Program
  • A preliminary plan of coursework that will count towards the certificate based on consultation with the Translation Studies Advisor
  • A brief letter of support from the student’s faculty advisor (DGS or committee chair)
  • Rackham’s Add a Degree or Certificate Application (if already in a Rackham graduate program). This application is available on Rackham’s website.
  • Students enrolled in non-Rackham graduate programs (e.g., Law, Business, etc.) must complete a Rackham online application, submit Rackham’s required materials/transcripts, and pay the application fee. Graduate Certificate applicants do not need to submit new test scores, but a final official copy of undergraduate transcripts/credentials must be submitted to Rackham.


12 credit hours required for the graduate certificate are distributed as follows:

  • At least one graduate course (3 credits) in translation studies regularly offered by Comparative Literature (e.g. COMPLIT 580/581:Translation Workshop and/or COMPLIT 720/721: Seminar in Translation)
  • Other graduate courses (adding up to 6 credits) in any department, contributing to the student’s critical understanding of translation and/or culminating in a seminar paper specifically exploring a question in translation studies; please consult with the Faculty Advisor in Translation Studies for pre-approval of courses for the Certificate.
  • Capstone Project (3 credits) taken as an Independent Study, with a supervising faculty member.


The Capstone Project may consist of one of the following:

  • A work in translation (e.g. a literary or scholarly translation, an artistic creation or performance engaged with translation, the subtitling of a film, a collaborative translation across disciplines or media)
  •  A professional practicum related to translation (e.g. editorial work for a translation journal or online publication, development and teaching of an undergraduate translation course, engagement in community service translation projects; internship in a medical, legal, business, or other professional setting)
  • An applied project that takes up a concept or problem in the field of translation studies
  • A significantly redeveloped/expanded/revised dissertation chapter, master’s thesis, or independent study focused on some aspect of the history, theory or practicetranslation


To submit the final Capstone Project, the student should include:

  •  A 250-word abstract of the project
  • A framing statement that addresses the following questions: How does this project draw on critical perspectives in translation studies? How has this project been informed by coursework completed for the graduate certificate? How does this project contribute to the larger field of translation studies?
  • A description of how the student intends to circulate the work to its intended disciplinary audience