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Dr Isabel Santafé

Lecturer in Hispanic Studies (E&S)


01392 723818

Isabel Santafé was appointed Associate Lecturer in Spanish (Education & Scholarship) in 2012. She originally joined the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures in 2008 as a PhD candidate and Postgraduate Teaching Assistant. She graduated from the University of Zaragoza in 2002 with a degree in Filología Inglesa (English Linguistics and Literature) and then completed her Teacher Training course (equivalent to PGCE). Isabel holds an MA with Distinction in Applied Translation and a PhD in Translation Studies from the University of Exeter. Her doctoral thesis looked at multimodal translation applied to global standardised campaigns in international women's magazines.

Isabel is also a translator from English into Spanish. She is a Career Affiliate Member of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting (ITI) and part of the regional ITI South West committee since February 2014.

Isabel is an accredited DELE examiner (all levels) and an ASPIRE Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. See

Employablity and Student Engagement

2014-2018 Isabel successfully co-run with Richard Mansell the extra-curricular Translation Business Project for Humanities undergraduate and postgraduate students. The purpose of the project was to help students build and improve transferable intercultural, linguistic and entrepreneurial skills to develop their employability attributes. For more information about the events organised, presentations at conferences and the student’s work, please check the project's blog

Teaching and E-assessment

Isabel teaches Spanish language at undergraduate level (Year 1, 2 and 4) and designs e-assessment material. At a postgraduate level, she teaches translation methodology lectures and seminars in the MA in Translation Programme and has supervised masters dissertations.





Research interests

Translation of advertising material and Transcreation

My research centres on the translation of advertising material covering various interdisciplinary fields including linguistics, advertising, visual and cultural studies.Through a comparative analysis of Spanish-English pairs of standardised print ads, I explore text-image relationships to demonstrate that the image can communicate as much as written text and challenge the idea that images are not part of the translator’s domain. In my doctoral research I developed a multimodal method of analysis of print ads consisting of different stages integrating visual analysis as a part of the translation process. I have also a particular interest in the concept of ‘transcreation’ to define translation procedures and concepts in advertising.  

Gender stereotypes in global advertising

I am exploring the presence and portrayal of women in international advertising and how both discourse and visual features are used to target women and construct and reinforce global gender stereotypes. I look into the applicability of feminist translation strategies in commercial messages.


2018 (8 Feb.) 2nd Valencia/Napoli Colloquium on Gender and Translation. University of L'Orientale Naples. Paper: 'Are You Beach Body Ready? Gender Stereotyping in Contemporary Print Advertising'. Paper co-authored with Professor Emilia Di Martino.

2016 (5 Nov.) 14th Annual Portsmouth Translation Conference. University of Portsmouth. Paper: 'How can we teach students to interact in the online translation industry?'

2016 (7-8 Oct.) Translation and the Creative Industries International Conference. University of Westminster. Paper: 'The invisible role of translation in global advertising' 

2016 (30 June) Third Colloquium on Innovation in Modern Languages Education. University of Bristol. Paper: ‘The Student Translation Business Project: Developing Intercultural Skills in the Global Marketplace.’ (Presented with ML students).

2015 (6-8 Nov.) 5th International Conference Applied Linguistics and Professional Practice (ALAPP). Università degli Studi di Milano. Panel on 'The talk of professional communities and its role in identity-shaping'. Paper: 'The social power of advertising in the construction and distribution of the feminine identity. A case study of beauty and cosmetic ads in UK women’s magazines'.

2015 (7 May) ASPIRE Development Day: Education Matters.University of Exeter. Workshop: 'Work-based Learning and Assessment: the Translation Business Project in HUMS'.

2015 (6 Feb.) European Graduate Placement Scheme Conference. Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Spain. (Representative for the Exeter MA Translation)

2015 (21 Jan.) Using Technology to Enhance Students’ Learning. College of Humanities in partnership with EQE. University of Exeter. E-assessment and E-marking

2014 (8 Nov.) 14th Portsmouth Translation Conference, University of Portsmouth. Paper: 'Bridging professional practice and education: The Translation Business Project at the University of Exeter'.

2014 (8-9 July)  2nd International Conference on Research into the Didactics of Translation. Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Spain. Poster: 'Student Translation Agency: Bridging Professional Practice, Collaborative Work and Employability at an Undergraduate Level. A Case Study'.

2014 (13 June) I Colloquium on Innovation in Modern Languages Education, University of Bath. Paper: 'The Translation Business Project at the University of Exeter' (Presented with ML students).

2014 (6 May) College of Humanities. Education Away Day, University of Exeter. 'Translation Agency Simulation Exercise'.

2014 (19 Feb.) Staff Development sessions for Modern Languages, University of Exeter.Teaching Translation: shared suggestions and reflections'.

2014 (12 Feb.) Centre for Translating Cultures, University of Exeter. Paper: 'Do images travel well across cultures? The relevance of visuals in the translation of international print ads as a multimodal process on the translation of images in advertising material'.

2014 (28 Jan.) Modern Languages Department, University of Exeter. Speaker at the Research Stories Event

2013 (1 -2 July) New Research in Translation & Interpreting Studies. Universitat Rovira i Virgili. Paper: 'A Multimodal Method of Analysis to the Translation of Standardised International Print Advertisements'.

2012 (May) 1st International Conference of Non-professional Interpreting and Translation. University of Forli, Italy. Paper: 'Natural Translation in Non-professional Fashion Blogs at the Service of Globalisation'.

2010 (Nov.) 10th Portsmouth Translation Conference. University of Portsmouth. Paper: Translating Images: Images as Part of the Translation Process International Print Advertising Campaigns'.


Research collaborations

I am part of the Lexicography and Lexicology Research Group from the University of Alicante, Spain, directed by Professor Félix Rodríguez González.

Research supervision

I am a Visiting Lecturer (tutor and dissertation supervisor/marker) for the MA Translation Studies (Distance Learning) at the University of Birmingham since 2017.

I have also carried out supervision work for the MA in Translation at Exeter and for the MA in Translating Popular Culture (Audiovisual Translation) at City University London.

External impact and engagement

I collaborate as a volunteer and trustee with Charity Translators, a registered Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO) founded by the trustee and coordinator Cari Bottois, alumna of the MA Translation.

Charity Translators is a growing network of volunteers offering support to charities, NGOs and community groups that need translation and interpreting services. Volunteers use their linguistic skills to help support the work of organisations working in the international field and within our local multicultural communities. Charity Translators looks to innovative relationships with external institutions and enterprises to promote volunteering with students and multilingual employees. We aim to develop the volunteer network so that many more charities can benefit from the support we can offer.

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I started teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language in 2003. At Exeter I teach Spanish oral, grammar, writing skills and translation (into Spanish) classes to undergraduate students in the Hispanic Unit. At a postgraduate level, I occasionally teach on research-led modules in the MA Translation and supervise dissertations. I have also taught theoretical and practical aspects of the translation profession such as marketing and social media in the Translation Summer School, Translation: A Global Business.


I am also particularly interested in the use of translation in language teaching and learning, always researching new ideas to incorporate to my seminars.


In 2018 I won Best Feedback Provider at the University of Exeter Teaching Awards.


Modules taught

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