Dr Svetlana Carsten

Dr Svetlana Carsten

Honorary Fellow in Translation Studies

Summary: Online interpreter training; curriculum design and pedagogy; OERs and learning theories

 I have been involved in interpreting training since 1985 having previously worked for a number of years as a freelance interpreter and translator. In 2001, in my capacity as the Director of Interpreting Programmes, I launched a multilingual postgraduate programme in interpreting at Leeds. I stayed in the Director post until October 2010. I got tremendous satisfaction from the challenge of managing interpreting training in up to 10 to 11 languages. The environment at the Centre for Translation Studies provided the ideal place for offering high-level professional training for linguists and I brought in a team of interpreting tutors who were renowned as EU conference interpreters and interpreter trainers and who helped to establish the reputation of the interpreting course in Leeds. From 2007 to 2012, I led the National Network for Interpreting which forms a part of the UK government-funded Routes into Languages Programme and currently I lead the EU-funded ORCIT project (Online Resources for Conference Interpreter Training) in partnership with the universities of Comillas (Madrid), Charles in Prague, Heidelberg, ISIT (Paris), Thessaloniki and Vilnius. In 2012 I won the David Crystal Award for fostering the study of languages from the Chartered Institute of Linguists.

I hold a visiting post at the University of Vilnius.


-          PhD (Literature and Politics), Bradford

-          BA equiv (English, Translation and Interpreting), Voronezh State University, RU

Research interests and Collaborative work

My research and scholarship interests include course design and pedagogy, the methodology of teaching interpreting, OERs and learning theories. Collaborative work on the two projects which I have led, the NNI and ORCIT, focuses on the development of on-line resources for interpreter-training.

Other collaborative work includes setting up professional development programmes for conference interpreters with the Interpreting Directorate of the European Parliament, the UN, Lithuanian Parliament and the Latvian Group of the European Parliament. Until 2011, I co-chaired (together with the DG for Interpretation, SCIC) the Universities Contact Group (UCG), which is a forum of 14 universities across the world and 19 major international organisations. The forum addresses the problem of the shortage of skills and linguists in the language industry.


I have an extensive experience of supervising UG dissertations in Russian Studies and MA theses in Translation Studies. I have experience in co-supervising PhD theses.

Publications related to the  NNI and ORCIT projects

‘In Defence of Interpreting’, The Linguist, 2013, 52/1 pp 16-17.

'Classroom Without Walls: online open resource for conference interpreter training’, with Llewellyn Smith, S. and Perret, M., The Linguist, 2012, 51/5, p.7.

‘A Mixed Picture: assessing the activities of the National Network for Interpreting,’ ITI Bulletin, September-October, 2011, pp 14-15.

Fluency in Sarcasm’ and Routes into Languages, ITI Bulletin, May 2008, pp 16-17.

Routes into Languages, UK’, DG – Interpretation, Universities Conference, European Commission, Brussels, 24 April 2008 http://scic.cec.eu.int/europa/display.jsp?id=c_7486

Language Learning Trends in the UK in the Context of Multilingualism’, DG – Interpretation, Universities Conference, European Commission, Brussels, 10 March 2006 http://scic.cec.eu.int/europa/display.jsp?id=c_7486

 Invited Lectures

‘Interpreting as an Engaging Language Learning Activity,’ Moscow State University, March 2013.

‘Pedagogical Approaches to Interpreter Training’ – IATIS Webinar (key note), Salford, 30 January 2013

‘Interpreter Training: is there a right way?’, Universidade Lusófona, Lisbon, May 2012

‘Training in Consecutive Interpreting –Alternative Approach’, Moscow State University, March 2008.

‘Interpreter training approach in Leeds’, China Foreign Affairs University, Beijing, May 2006.

‘Interpreter training: is there a right way?’, University of Iasi, Iasi, Romania, April 2005.

‘Training in Consecutive Interpreting’, Defence School of Languages Conference, Beaconsfield, April 2002.