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Personal profile


I started learning Japanese at school in New Zealand, and spent Year 12 in Japan, which was a life-changing experience. I then went on to study Japanese and Law at university, during which time I spent a second year in Japan and grew to love the language and culture even more. After graduating, I again travelled to Japan where I worked as a translator on the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme for 3 years. This experience motivated me to explore the process of translation and cross-cultural communication in greater depth, and this brought me to Melbourne in 2005 to pursue postgraduate study.

My PhD research investigated Japanese-English literary translation strategies focussing on how metaphorical expressions are translated. During my candidacy I began teaching Japanese and translation/interpreting at Monash. I find my own experiences useful to draw upon when teaching, and I enjoy seeing students develop their skills and become enthusiastic about Japanese and translation.
After completing my PhD in 2009 I first took up a position with Translation and Interpreting Studies at Monash, where, as well as teaching translation, my primary role was to design curriculum and implement a program of professional development short courses for translation and interpreting practitioners in collaboration with the Victorian Multicultural Commission. I was also the Project Manager for courses in basic interpreter skills training that we offered in regional Victoria. Coordinating these programs was a very rewarding experience, as I was able to work with people from a wide variety of cultural, linguistic and professional backgrounds.

Since 2011 I have been employed full time with Japanese Studies, and I am currently also the Honours Coordinator for Asian Languages and Studies.

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2010 2012

Research Output 2006 2016

  • 6 Article
  • 1 Commissioned Report

Tawada Yoko: translating from the 'poetic ravine'

Tobias, S. L., 2015, In : Japanese Studies. 35, 2, p. 169 - 183 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Traversing textual terrains: the translation of metaphor in "Rashomon"

Tobias, S. L., 2015, In : Translation Review. 92, 1, p. 8 - 22 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

'Vegemite, possums and BYO': Translation strategies in the formation of Japanese perceptions of Australia

Tobias, S. L., Gerber, L. T. & Sell, C. A., 2013, In : New Voices in Translation Studies. 10, p. 21 - 38 18 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Intake tests for a short interpreter-training course: Design, implementation, feedback

Hlavac, J., Orlando, M. & Tobias, S. L., 2012, In : International Journal of Interpreter Education. 4, 1, p. 21 - 45 25 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review



Rita Wilson (Recipient) & Shani Tobias (Recipient), 2010

Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)