Official Master's Degree in Conference Interpreting

Submission of applications
July 1 to September 26, 2016.

Duration: 1 year.

Study in Universidad Pontificia Comillas, 3-5

Open Days

Information session
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Credits 60 ECTS

In today's globalized world, conference interpreters act as conduits for intercultural communication; and through their work, they enable the proper development of diplomatic, commercial, cultural or scientific exchanges on an international scale. Spanish, along with English, is one of the main working languages in the world of interpreting.

Conference interpreting differs from liaison or bilateral interpreting, both in terms of the crucial aspects of the communicative situation, and of the techniques and strategies of information processing that the professionals employ. Conference interpreting is conducted either consecutively or simultaneously. Both are used in different scenarios: lectures, conferences, debates, presentations, workshops, tours, workshops and round tables.

The level of responsibility held by professional conference interpreters requires specialized postgraduate training, tailored to the specific needs of their daily work, as recommended by the National Agency for Evaluation and Accreditation in its White Paper on Bachelor's Degree programs in Translation and Interpreting. The evolution of international current affairs and technological advances especially determine the circumstances of the interpreting profession, who must be able to adapt to new situations and demands constantly.

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Who is it intended for?

This Official Master's Degree in Conference Interpreting is ideally suited for holders of a Bachelor's or Licentiate Degree in Translation and Interpreting, who must have strong language skills and be interested in communication in the realm of large multilingual conferences.

Candidates must pass an oral test for admission, in which to demonstrate their analytical and synthesis skills, communication skills, a perfect command of their mother tongue and an in-depth knowledge of the other working languages.



Admission application filing period:

  • The first period begins on March 1 and ends on May 31, 2016.
  • The second period begins on July 1 and ends on September 26, 2016.

Information notice on the documents to be submitted.



October - June.


Course times:

Monday - Friday, 9:30 - 15:30.



C/ Universidad de Comillas, 3.
28049, Madrid.


Classes begin on:

Wednesday, October 1, 2016



The fees come to € 12,665 (€ 1,860.00 for registration fees plus 8 installments of € 1,350.60), and options 3, 4 and 5 entail an additional charge.

Any Mexican students admitted onto our Master's program whose studies are funded by FIDERH will receive a scholarship from Comillas equivalent to 10% of the total fees of the course of study in which they are enrolled.

Comillas Pontifical University alumni may benefit from a 10% discount over the total Master's fees.


Financial support:

There are official Ministerial grants available to students enrolled in the Master's program and partial scholarships from the European Commission, provided that the application is submitted within the relevant period.


Master's Course Director:

María Dolores Rodríguez Melchor 
Tel.: 34 917 343 950 ext. 4275 
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Master's Program Coordinator:

Elena Zubiaurre Wagner 
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C/ Universidad de Comillas, 3.
28049, Madrid.


The Master's program aims to train professional Conference Interpreters that are ready to directly enter the labor market. In this regard, the Master's program offers:

  • Most classes are dedicated to the practice of consecutive and simultaneous interpreting.
  • All interpreting classes are taught by currently active professional interpreters.
  • The program includes lectures on the Theory of Interpreting, European institutions and International Organizations.
  • Special emphasis is placed on the use of new technologies and their applications to the field of interpreting.
  • Permanent contact with the professional world.
  • Training assistance from major institutions and international organizations.

Our faculty staff is composed of professional interpreters that are members of the International Association of Conference Interpreters (AIIC) and are accredited by various national and international institutions.


Subject 1.
Conference Interpreting
Consecutive Interpreting techniques Compulsory Annual 18
Simultaneous Interpreting techniques Compulsory Annual 18
Theory of Interpreting and Documentation Compulsory Annual 6
Subject 2.
Subjects related to Interpreting
International Organizations for interpreters Compulsory 1er. term 3
European Institutions for interpreters Compulsory 2º term 3
Subject 3.
Final Master's Project or Dissertation
Final Master's Project or Dissertation Compulsory 2º term 6
Subject 4.
Interpreting Internship
Interpreting Internship Compulsory Annual 6
Private sector:

Many conference interpreters are freelancers, i.e. working on a self-employed basis, who render their services in domestic or international markets. As such, they may also work for public institutions and organizations, whether national and international, as you can see in the next section, and also in the private sector.

Work in the private sector often takes place in the context of private companies (visits, meetings of shareholders, boards of directors, etc.) or of large conferences and fairs. Language combinations that include two or more active languages are the most sought-after in this market. The combinations most commonly used in Spain are undoubtedly English into Spanish, and Spanish into English.

Public sector:

National and international institutions, such as the United Nations, the European Commission, the European Parliamentand the Court of Justice of the European Union, are some of the main employers of professional conference interpreters. Interpreters working in the institutional sector have normally passed a competitive examination or engage in self-employment after being included in the lists established to such end.

In Spain, inclusion in the list of official translators and interpreters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation takes place via a competitive examination consisting of a translation paper and an interpreting test. The list of interpreters who work as freelancers for the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation is centralized through the Official Register of Sworn Translators and Interpreters.

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El Máster Universitario en Interpretación de Conferencias surje como complemento perfecto al grado en Traducción e Interpretación, en la Universidad Pontificia Comillas ICAI-ICADE de Madrid.


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