Linguistics with specialisation in Syntax MRes

This programme offers a specialised Master's degree in syntax. The Master of Research (MRes) combines the advantages of a traditional taught MA programme with a strong research preparation component. As in a traditional specialised Master's degree programme, you will attend a variety of high level classes exposing you to current internationally recognised research in linguistics undertaken by members of staff.

Mode of study

  • Full-time 1 year
  • Part-time 2 years

Tuition fees

  • UK/EU Full-time: £8,750
  • UK/EU Part-time: £4,400
  • Overseas Full-time: £17,400
  • Overseas Part-time: £9,000

Application date

  • All applicants: 1 August 2014

More details in Application section.

What will I learn?

Students gain knowledge and understanding of current research in generative syntax and are prepared for independent research. On completion of the programme, they will be able to formulate appropriate research questions, find and evaluate relevant literature, develop and test new hypotheses, and produce cogent, structured and professionally presented reports.

Why should I study this degree at UCL?

The Division of Psychology & Language Sciences undertakes world-leading research and teaching in mind, behaviour, and language.

Our work attracts staff and students from around the world. Together they create an outstanding and vibrant environment, taking advantage of cutting-edge resources such as a behavioural neuroscience laboratory, a centre for brain imaging, and extensive laboratories for research in speech and language, perception, and cognition.

Opportunities for graduate students to work with world-renowned researchers exist in all areas of investigation, from basic processes to applied research. The division offers a supportive environment including numerous specialist seminars, workshops, and guest lectures.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of five core modules (75 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and research dissertation (75 credits).

Core Modules

  • Research Skills
  • Research Preparation A
  • Research Preparation B
  • Intermediate Generative Grammar A
  • Interfaces in Syntax


  • Students choose two option modules from a selection that includes the following:
  • Language Acquisition
  • Semantics and Pragmatics
  • Phonetics and Phonology
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Pragmatic Theory
  • Philosophy of Language
  • Current Issues in Syntax
  • Stuttering
  • Semantic-Pragmatic Development
  • Pragmatics and Cognition
  • Neurolinguistics
  • Morphology


All students undertake independent research, under supervision, culminating in a dissertation of 12,000 words.

Teaching and Learning

The programme offers classes in research methodology and professional methods and supports the development of a research proposal. Teaching is delivered through a combination of lectures, small-group teaching (tutorials or backup classes), workshops and a virtual learning environment. Typically, each taught course involves a weekly lecture of one or two hours, a one hour class in which you meet with a group of between five and 12 students and a staff member to discuss topics covered in the lecture, and a virtual learning environment where you can access course material, a course discussion forum and other activities.

Further details available on subject website:


Two awards of £500 are available for Master's programmes in Linguistics. All successful applicants will be considered for these awards at the beginning of June for entry in September of the same year.

Scholarships available for this department

Sully Scholarship

For current students in their final year of a research programme in the Division of Psychology and Language Sciences. This award is based on academic merit. Students must contact the Division of Psychology & Language Sciences for application information.

Linguistics Departmental Award

Awarded for academic merit

MRes Speech, Language and Cognition Awards

To reward academic merit.

Childcare Support Grant

Selection based solely on financial need.

Graduate Support Bursary

For a prospective UK Master's student from under-represented background enrolling on a participating programme . Selection based solely on financial need.

Further information about funding and scholarships can be found on the Scholarships and funding website.

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

International equivalencies

Select your country for equivalent alternative requirements

English language proficiency level: Good

How to apply

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

The deadline for applications is 1 August 2014.

Who can apply?

The programme is designed for students with a background in theoretical linguistics who wish to pursue an interest in syntax. Although the degree can be an end in itself, it is an excellent preparation for independent doctoral research in syntax, and both the teaching and assessment are strongly research-oriented.


Graduates from our specialised Master's programmes in Linguistics have a very strong track record of securing funded doctoral studentships at institutions and have in recent years gone on to research at MIT, Cambridge, UCL, University of Massachusetts in Amherst, and the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona.

Top career destinations for this programme

  • International SOS, Operations Coordinator, 2011
  • Maart, Proof Reader, 2010
  • University of Cambridge, PhD in Linguistics, 2012
  • UCL, PhD in Linguistics, 2011
  • Aarhus University, MA in English Languge and Literature, 2009


The Linguistics MRes equips graduates with the necessary skills to carry out research in the subject of specialisation.

Next steps


Mrs Stefanie Anyadi

T: +44 (0)20 7679 4224

W: Division of Psychology & Language Sciences



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