Linguistics with a Specialisation in Syntax MA

London, Bloomsbury

The Linguistics with a specialisation in Syntax MA is a research-oriented programme designed for students looking for a concentrated, advanced course in theoretical syntax, couched broadly within the Principles and Parameters approach to syntax and its offshoot: the Minimalist Program.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2023/24)
£14,100
£7,050
Overseas tuition fees (2023/24)
£26,200
£13,100
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

Normally a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard is required.

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

Students gain knowledge and understanding of current research in theoretical 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.

Who this course is for

The programme is designed for students with a background in linguistics or cognitive science, who wish to pursue an interest in theoretical syntax. Applicants will usually have taken at least a one-year course in generative syntax or equivalent.

What this course will give you

The UCL Division of Psychology and Language Sciences undertakes world-leading research and teaching in linguistics, language, mind, and behaviour. More specifically, UCL Linguistics is one of the leading departments for research in theoretical linguistics in the UK and its staff include world-leaders in theoretical syntax, semantics, pragmatics, phonology, and experimental linguistics.

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, cognition, and communication.

Our world-class research is characterised by a tight integration of theoretical and experimental work spanning the full width of the linguistic enterprise and forms the bedrock of the department’s eminent reputation which is also reflected in other markers of excellence such as its editorial involvement with top journals in the field.

The foundation of your career

This Linguistics MA equips graduates with the necessary skills to carry out research in the specialised subject of syntax.

Employability

Although the degree can be an end in itself, this advanced programme is an excellent preparation for independent doctoral research in syntax. Graduates from our specialised Linguistics Master's programmes  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.

Teaching and learning

The teaching and assessment of this programme is strongly research-oriented. It is delivered through a combination of lectures, small-group teaching and a virtual learning environment. Some modules also involve workshops or practical classes. Assessment is through take-home and unseen examination, essays, presentations, assignments and the dissertation.

Modules

The Linguistics MA programme consists of four obligatory core modules, a selection of two further core modules out of a group of three choices, two option modules, and the dissertation. In the first term, you will take three obligatory modules focused on the core areas of linguistics: phonetics/phonology, syntax, and semantics/pragmatics.

The fourth core module (Foundations of Linguistics) focuses on the intellectual foundations of linguistics and the connection between linguistics and other related fields, and it runs over term 1 and term 2. In the second term, you will take two further core modules from a selection of three choices: phonology, syntax, or semantics/pragmatics. In addition, you will take two option modules from a range of choices. These can be taken in term 1 or term 2, but they are mostly taken in term 2. You will begin working on the dissertation in May and continue to work on it over the summer months. The due date for the dissertation is in late August or early September.

The Linguistics MA programmes with a specialisation also involve a combination of core modules, option modules, and the dissertation. However, the core modules in the specialisation programmes focus on advanced study in the area of specialisation.

Compulsory modules



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 are 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 Linguistics with a Specialisation in Syntax.

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.

Online - Open day

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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) £26,200 £13,100

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

This programme has no additional costs.

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 Linguistics with a specialisation in Syntax at graduate level
  • why you want to study Linguistics with a specialisation in Syntax at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this rigorous programme
  • 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.