English Linguistics MA

London, Bloomsbury

The English Linguistics MA provides students with the theoretical and practical knowledge needed to describe modern English, together with training in academic writing, linguistic argumentation and research methods. Students have access to a rich range of corpus resources to expand their understanding of syntax, pragmatics, semantics, and historical linguistics.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2023/24)
£14,100
£7,050
Overseas tuition fees (2023/24)
£29,000
£14,500
Duration
1 calendar year
2 calendar years
Programme starts
September 2023
Applications accepted
All applicants: 17 Oct 2022 – 31 Mar 2023

Applications open

Entry requirements

Applications are welcome from candidates who have at least a second-class Bachelor's degree in English Language or Literature from a UK university, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

Some prior knowledge of English language studies is expected for the programme.

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Level 2

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

Equivalent qualifications

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below. Please note that the equivalency will correspond to the broad UK degree classification stated on this page (e.g. upper second-class). Where a specific overall percentage is required in the UK qualification, the international equivalency will be higher than that stated below. Please contact Graduate Admissions should you require further advice.

About this degree

The MA introduces students to the core areas of the study of English Linguistics, including morphology, syntax, phonetics, phonology, pragmatics, and corpus linguistics. The programme develops students' critical thinking skills through interactive class discussions based on authentic linguistic data to explore how the English language works, facilitating students' growth as a researcher.

Who this course is for

The programme is of interest to those who wish to continue to a research degree in English language or linguistics, those who wish to become teachers or lecturers of English, or those intending to pursue a career in writing, publishing, editing, or communication.

What this course will give you

The department has exceptional resources for the study of English linguistics. Most of the staff teaching on the MA is based at the Survey of English Usage. Research at the Survey over many decades has resulted in several important publications and important studies on the grammar, semantics, and vocabulary of present-day English. The Department also regularly hosts visiting seminar speakers from other institutions. Our degree helps you develop your understanding of the English language from theoretical and practical perspectives through a combination of seminars, group activities, one-to-one tutorials, and special events such as trips to the Oxford English Dictionary and the British Library. Excellent library facilities are provided by the UCL Library, Senate House Library, and the British Library.

The foundation of your career

This degree develops your awareness of how the language choices we make have an impact in our professional and personal lives, and thus improves your communication skills. It also teaches you to carry out research projects, critically analyse data, and consult primary and secondary materials, and therefore become adept at consolidating and presenting information from a variety of sources. The theoretical and practical knowledge acquired about the English language also greatly helps teachers and educators by giving them a more solid foundation in the subject matter. These are all relevant transferable skills for a wide variety of career destinations.

Employability

The programme provides an ideal foundation for those wishing to continue to a research degree in English language or linguistics; students who obtain good results in their MA examinations may be considered for the MPhil/PhD programme at UCL (subject to places being available). Graduates may also become teachers or lecturers of English, or pursue a career in writing, publishing, communications, or editing.

Teaching and learning

The programme is taught through seminars and individual tutorials. Student assessment is through a portfolio of essays (two 2,000-word essays on English linguistics), and other written assignments (two 750-word research methodology assignments, and a 4,000-6,000 word essay for the option module), two three-hour written papers and the dissertation. 

Across the course of the year, at least 80 hours of a student's time is spent in seminars and in four 30-minute one-to-one tutorials with their personal tutor. Additional hours are spent in option courses. Students also attend approximately four research seminars across term one and term two, given by visiting linguists. Typically, 1715 hours are spent in independent study, which will include self-study, coursework and dissertation writing.

Modules

The MA English Linguistics offers two pathways for you to choose from:

Pathway One: English Corpus Linguistics:

You will study Modern English Grammar, English Corpus Linguistics, and Research Methodology in terms one and two. You will study two options over terms one and two. Each option module is taught in ten sessions over one term. Option modules vary each year but typically cover subjects such as morphology and semantics, the sounds of English, the history of the language, and stylistics. The English in Use module offered under Pathway Two can also be taken as an option in term one. You will work on the title of the Dissertation, together with an abstract of the proposed topic, to be submitted to the Programme Convenor on the first day of term three. You will write your dissertation during term three and the summer.

Pathway Two: English in Use:

You will study Modern English Grammar, English in Use, and Research Methodology in terms one and two. You will study two options over terms one and two. Each option module is taught in ten sessions over one term. Option modules vary each year but typically cover subjects such as morphology and semantics, the sounds of English, the history of the language, and stylistics. The English Corpus Linguistics module offered under Pathway One can also be taken as an option in term one. You will work on the title of the Dissertation, together with an abstract of the proposed topic, to be submitted to the Programme Convenor on the first day of term three. You will write your dissertation during term three and the summer. 

Part-time students typically take the Modern English Grammar module in their first year, together with one option module. During the second year, students take their second core module (either English Corpus Linguistics or English Language in Use, as well as a second option module. The Dissertation will be written during the summer of the second year of study. Part-time students are encouraged to work on their dissertations during the summer following the first year. Part-time students should discuss their teaching and learning arrangements with the programme convenor as soon as possible to ensure a balanced distribution of modules, compatibly with the students' other commitments.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded an MA in English Linguistics.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time Part-time
Tuition fees (2023/24) £14,100 £7,050
Tuition fees (2023/24) £29,000 £14,500

The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Where the programme is offered on a flexible/modular basis, fees are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.

Additional costs

Additional costs may include expenses such as books, stationery, printing or photocopying, and conference registration fees.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Next steps

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.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at Application fees.

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study English Linguistics at graduate level
  • why you want to study English Linguistics at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and/or professional background meets the demands of a challenging academic environment
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

Choose your programme

Please read the Application Guidance before proceeding with your application.

Year of entry: 2023-2024

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.