Universiteit Leiden

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Translation (MA)

Career prospects

Create a world of opportunities with a master's degree from Leiden University.

Where do our graduates work?

Because of the extensive curriculum and specialisations, you will be well-prepared to find a job related to the language industry. Our graduates have landed jobs in various sectors of the job market, such as education, communication and marketing, government and cultural institutions. Examples of the diverse roles of our graduates include:

  • Translator at a ministry of the interior
  • English teacher at Dutch high schools
  • Copywriter
  • Technical translator
  • Project manager at a translation agency

Nina van Ruijven

Graduated in Translation in Theory and Practice (Dutch/English) (MA Linguistics)

Nina van Ruijven

"I have my own small translation company and last August I started my first job as an English teacher at a high school. I chose to do this MA course, because I love the interplay between languages and making another language accessible for people who do not speak that particular language."

Dive into your personal interests

"During my studies, I learned a lot about both English and Dutch and I use this knowledge every day both as a translator and as a teacher. As a translator I obviously use the learned skills and knowledge the most. I know how to translate text and I know why I do this in a certain way. In my classroom I try to use as much of this knowledge as well, as I try to make a new language accessible for students. I thoroughly enjoyed my MA course, as the course was really personal. You can really dive into your personal interests and have access to lots of personal attention from the teachers."

The graphs below are based on alumni data from the MA Translation 2016-2020.

In which sector do students find jobs?

  • 21 % Education
  • 16 % Communication and marketing
  • 11 % IT
  • 11 % Wholesale and retail
  • 5 % Government and semi-government organisations
  • 5 % Business services
  • 5 % Culture, sports and recreation
  • 5 % Industrial sector
  • 21 % Other

How successful are they in finding a job?

  • 47 % found a job within two months
  • 79 % found their first job at academic level

Teacher qualification

If you are interested in a career in teaching, you can apply for the Dutch-taught teacher-training MA at the ICLON Graduate School of Education after graduating from the master’s programme. To be admitted, you need to have a master’s degree in the  relevant discipline. Fluency in Dutch is mandatory, and additional entry requirements may apply.

An academic career

Graduates interested in pursuing an academic career have gone on to do research internships or to pursue a PhD. If you are interested in pursuing an academic and research career, you can consider applying for the two-year Research Master's in Linguistics. Please keep in mind that this programme has additional admission requirements. You can explore the possibilities with the programme coordinator.

Career preparation

Find out how this programme prepares you for your future career and check our career preparation activities.

The Master's programme in Translation at Leiden University equips you with a range of transferable skills and knowledge that will help you stand out in your future career. Your specialised knowledge is complemented by a broad and contextual understanding as well as critical-thinking skills that can be applied to complex conceptual problems. Other skills you may encounter in the various Linguistics courses are:

  • Oral and written communication
  • Project management
  • Creative thinking
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Intercultural skill

You have the opportunity to do an internship at an organisation in the Netherlands or abroad. This experience is a great way to gain work experience or to explore the professional field. Organisations that our students have interned at include:

  • Leiden University Academic Language Centre
  • Global Voices
  • MediLingua
  • Taalmuseum (Language Museum)
  • The European Parliament
  • Dutch Tax Administration

Our staff can help you identify both the career that is right for you, and the necessary steps to get you there. Our team at Humanities Career Service provide all Leiden University humanities students with professional advice and guidance on everything from internships and career planning to job applications. Humanities Career Service also organises regular workshops on topics such as effective interview skills and creating a successful CV.

The Humanities Career Service offers you various (online) workshops, webinars and info sessions. Check our overview of career activities

The Leiden University Career Zone is an online career portal that helps you to prepare for the job market. Here you can find information, tools and tips to help you gain more personal insight, learn about the job market, develop your application skills, plan your academic and professional career, find job vacancies and discover what the Career Service can do for you.

Join the Mentor Network to contact alumni with experience on the labour market and ask them for advice. More than 1200 alumni are happy to help you!

Jelle on finding an internship via Leiden University's Mentor Network

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