Ms Alisa Tian
Associate Lecturer

Ms Alisa Tian

BA (Linguistics & Advanced Chinese Studies), UNSW Sydney; MTI, Western Sydney University, MPhil (Translation pedagogy) UNSW Sydney

NAATI Certified Professional Interpreter & Translator (Chinese-English, both directions)


Arts,Design & Architecture
School of Humanities & Languages

I am an Associate Lecturer in translation and interpreting in the School of Humanities and Languages, Faculty of Arts, Design and Architecture at UNSW. I have a Master of Philosophy in translation pedagogy from UNSW, a Master of Translation and Interpreting from Western Sydney University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Linguistics and Advanced Chinese Studies from UNSW. I am also a PhD candidate at UNSW. 

I am a passionate translation/interpreting practitioner, teacher, and researcher. I have extensive practical experience in T&I since 2006, including translation of official documents, literary works, interpreting for government visits and conferences in both the public and private sectors. I specialise in legal interpreting and subtitling. Since the start of my career as an in-house translator/interpreter at a leading law firm in Australia, I have worked in trials and hearings at different courts and tribunals, including several high-profile trials featured in the news. I also provide expert opinion to court and private law firms. As a subtitler for SBS TV (Australia) since 2016, I have been subtitling programs of various genres, including Insight, The Family Law (Seasons 1-3), Australia in Colour (Seasons 1-2), Meet the Parents (中国式相亲), Midnight Diner (深夜食堂), and History of China (中国通史). 

I have taught across a range of courses in T&I at UNSW since 2010, including legal interpreting, community interpreting, accreditation studies in interpreting, media translation, specialised translation and accreditation studies in translation, as well as the Personalised English Language Enhancement course. My teaching has continuously received positive student feedback for clear structure, constructive feedback and inclusive style, with student satisfaction rates consistently above school, faculty and university averages. I was awarded one of the first Casual Staff Teaching Awards in 2021 by the School of Humanities and Languages at UNSW. 

My research interests include translation pedagogy and systemic functional linguistics (SFL). In my MPhil project, I investigated the usefulness of an SFL-based approach in teaching long sentence translation. My current PhD project extends this into a broader scope by drawing further connections between SFL and translation pedagogy to bridge the gap between theory and practice in the translation classroom. 




Office 269, Morven Brown Building

Casual Staff Teaching Award (2021) issued by School of Humanities and Languages, ADA, UNSW

Highly Commended Award - 3 Minute Thesis Faculty Heat Competition (2021)

2020 Invited Speaker, Interpreting in the courtroom - an Australian practice, Universitas Indonesia, Depok. 

2022 Invited Speaker, Teaching long sentence translation with a systemic functional linguistics perspective, East Asian Translation Pedagogy Network Advance, University of Leeds, UK. 

MPhil project: Tackling the translation of long sentence in the classroom - an investigation of the usefulness of a systemic functional linguistics-based approach in teaching long sentence translation from English to Chinese 

PhD project (current): Developing a toolbox for translation students based on systemic functional linguistics 

Member and UNSW's representative to the Australian Institute of Interpreters and Translators (AUSIT)'s Education Committee 

Co-author of Community Translation Style Guide (English-Chinese Translation) - AUSIT (2021)

My Teaching

Legal Interpreting (MODL5101)

Community Interpreting (MODL5102)

Media Translation (MODL5103)

Specialised Translation (MODL5104)

Text Analysis for Translation (MODL5106)

Certification in Translation (MODL5108)

Certification in Interpreting (MODL5113)

Personalised English Language Enhancement (PELE, ARTS5505/HUMS1005)