UCL Psychology and Language Sciences


Study Linguistics

You can study linguistics at UCL at both undergraduate and graduate level.

lecture theatre

We pride ourselves in the quality of our teaching and our ability to provide small-group teaching alongside lecture-based instruction. Almost all classes take place in Chandler House, a short walk from UCL’s main campus, in the heart of London, which is home to Linguistics, as well as to two other Language Sciences departments, namely Speech, Hearing and Phonetic Science, and Language and Cognition. Chandler House boasts state-of-the-art experimental facilities and a dedicated Language Sciences library.

Undergraduate programmes (BA and BSc)

At undergraduate level, the department offers a 3-year BA Linguistics, a 4-year BA Linguistics International with a year abroad, and a 3-year BSc in Experimental Linguistics. All three programmes are constructed from modules that provide a broad introduction to theoretical linguistics. The BSc Experimental Linguistics additionally introduces you to experimental methods used in investigations into how language is acquired, represented and processed in the brain. Further information about these programmes can be found through the links below.

* BA Linguistics
* BA Linguistics International Programme
* BSc Experimental Linguistics

Postgraduate programmes (MA and MSc)

At graduate level, the department offers a 1-year MA in Linguistics, which can be taken as a conversion programme, but which also offers suitable applicants specialized pathways in Phonology, Pragmatics, Semantics and Syntax. In addition, we contribute to the MSc Language Sciences, which offers specialisations in Language and Development, Linguistics with Neuroscience, Neuroscience and Communication, Sign Language and Deaf Studies, and Speech and Hearing Sciences, and to the MRes Speech, Language and Cognition. Further information about these programmes can be accessed through the links below.

* MA Linguistics (conversion programme)
* MA Linguistics with a specialisation in Phonology
* MA Linguistics with a specialisation in Pragmatics (will not run in 2020/21)
* MA Linguistics with a specialisation in Syntax
* MSc Language Sciences with specialisation in Language Development
* MSc Language Sciences with specialisation in Neuroscience and Communication
* MSc Language Sciences with specialisation in Sign Language and Deaf Studies
* MSc Language Sciences with specialisation in Speech and Hearing Sciences

Research Degree (MPhil/PhD)

UCL Linguistics has an eminent reputation for its research in theoretical and experimental linguistics. Research students in our department play an integral role in our research community. We encourage students to get involved with cutting-edge research from the beginning of the programme. In addition to working on their own research projects, MPhil and PhD students frequently collaborate on staff members' research. Students are also encouraged to attend research seminars, reading groups, and lab meetings in the department and across the division. As part of the Division of Psychology and Language Sciences (and sharing Chandler House with the departments of Speech, Hearing & Phonetic Sciences and Language & Cognition), our students have the opportunity for a truly interdisciplinary experience here at UCL.

For students with research interests involving experimental methods, we have excellent facilities in Chandler House for running experimental studies, including two eyetrackers, several soundproof booths, and access to electroencephalography (EEG) equipment.

Our goal is to prepare our PhD students with the skills and knowledge necessary to be competitive on the academic job market in the UK and abroad. In addition to the one-on-one guidance that students receive from their supervisors, students have several opportunities for further education. Our students are invited to take part in the yearly Advanced Core Training in Linguistics (ACTL) seminars and summer school. Research students are also welcome to audit advanced classes, both in our department and in other departments. Given UCL's central location, students can readily take advantage of seminars at other nearby universities with linguistics programmes (including SOAS, QMUL, Oxford, and Cambridge). In terms of teaching experience, our students generally have ample opportunity to work as paid teaching assistants on undergraduate and postgraduate (MA) modules.

We offer a full-time (3 year) or part-time (5 year) MPhil/PhD linguistics programme.

For the MPhil/PhD any of our full-time academic staff members will consider applications to supervise new research students. Upon identifying a staff member who shares your research interests, the first step in applying for the MPhil/PhD programme is contacting your potential supervisor with a CV and a research proposal. Note that we generally do not admit applicants who have not previously identified (and received confirmation from) a potential supervisor.

Here you can find more information on the MPhil/PhD Linguistics programme (including funding options).

A list of our research PhD alumni can be found here

Research Degree (standalone MPhil)

The two year MPhil Linguistics is the first Research Masters degree in the UK with the specific aim of training students to a level where they can produce impactful research in theoretical linguistics. The programme is provided through a combination of research seminars, auditing of modules, a comprehensive range of research methods development and supervisions for the main research project.

The programme is ideal for students who want to do further research in Linguistics over and above their undergraduate or Masters degree – but may feel unprepared for applying directly to a PhD or are not ready to commit to studying for a full PhD. Completing the MPhil programme will enhance your chances of being successful in applying for PhD positions.

It is not necesssary to have identified a potential supervisor at the time of application. 

Here you can find more information on the MPhil Linguistics only programme