This programme will develop your understanding of how knowledge of language changes as people acquire or lose language at various points in their lifespan.
It is designed primarily for graduates with a background related to linguistics and/or psychology who wish to develop their knowledge of current research on language acquisition (first, second, bilingual, and impaired) and language change from a cognitive perspective and from the point of view of current linguistic theories.
Joining a vibrant research community of developmental linguists, you will have the opportunity to carry out advanced research to try to answer questions related to the area of language development and bilingualism, such as ‘how do children learn language?’ or ‘what happens when we forget a language?’
You will benefit from the programme's strengths in:
This programme comprises two semesters of taught courses, followed by a dissertation.
Option courses may include:
This programme will provide you with the specialised skills you need to perform research in language learning and development. It will also serve as a solid basis for doctoral study.
How do children learn to reason in increasingly abstract ways? How do they learn language with such remarkable speed and fluidity? How do children use their reasoning and language skills to help them explain and understand people’s behaviour and emotions? Why does the amount of information that we can hold in mind at once increase from early childhood to adulthood? Why does children’s ability to control their own thinking, attention and behaviour improve as they get older? How does the development of children’s brains affect their behaviour, memory and ability to learn?
In this taught programme on Developmental Cognitive Science, you will learn how questions like these can be addressed using research techniques from several inter-related disciplines (e.g., Developmental Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, Computational Science, Neuroscience, Linguistics).
This programme aims to enhance your understanding of key theoretical and practical issues about typical and atypical development in children and young people, from a cognitive science perspective. It also aims to equip you with the skills required to conduct independent scientific research that addresses key issues in developmental cognitive science.
The University of Edinburgh has a long tradition of research expertise in developmental psychology and in cognitive science. This programme brings these two strands together focusing on a developmental cognitive science approach to both typical and atypical development in children and young people.
You will benefit from the breadth and strength of the interdisciplinary academic community at Edinburgh, for example by having the opportunity to select option courses and attend research seminars across different disciplines.
You will undertake the following:
Core courses (worth 100 credits in total):
2 option courses worth 20 credits in total:
And a Dissertation in Developmental Cognitive Science (60 credits)
The overall aim of the proposed programme is to advance students’ understanding of how questions about developmental changes in children’s cognitive abilities can be addressed using scientific methods drawn from a range of fields, including developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, computational modelling, neuroscience and linguistics. More specifically, the programme aims to:
Students who successfully complete the programme will be able to:
Career opportunities for graduates from this programme include:
Find out more about scholarships and funding opportunities:
This specialisation is designed for students with a background in linguistics who are interested in applying their knowledge in understanding language impairments in individuals with brain damage and/or carrying out neuroscientific research on language processing, or in pursuing theoretical linguistics research using psychological science methods, such as eye-tracking and imaging.
Students take a set of core modules as a foundation to one of the following areas of linguistics: phonology, syntax, semantics-pragmatics. In selecting the modules for their specialisation, students will be able to take full advantage of the breadth of expertise in language research in the UCL Division of Psychology & Language Sciences.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of three core modules (60 credits), two specialisation modules (30 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and a research project (60 credits).
Students select two modules from all those offered within UCL Psychology & Language Sciences, subject to availability and agreement with the Programme Director. A list of possible options is listed below:
All students undertake an independent research project in an area of language science which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000 words.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, small-group teaching and a virtual learning environment. Some modules also involve workshops or practical classes. Student performance is assessed through coursework, examinations and the research project.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Language Sciences (with specialisation in Linguistics with Neuroscience) MSc
The majority of students who graduate from Language Sciences MSc programmes go on to further study or research. Recent graduates have gone on to PhD study in UCL, other UK institutions and overseas institutions. Others have gone to work in related industries (for example in speech technology industries, cochlear implants manufacturers) or in education. The skills that the MSc develops – independent research, presentation skills, statistics – are transferable skills that are very highly sought after outside academia.
Recent career destinations for this degree
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
The UCL Division of Psychology & Language Sciences undertakes world-leading research and teaching in mind, behaviour, and language. Staff and students benefit from cutting-edge resources including extensive laboratories for research in speech and language, perception, and cognition.
Opportunities for students to work with world-renowned researchers exist in all areas of investigation. The division offers a supportive environment including numerous specialist seminars, workshops, and guest lectures.
The Language Sciences MSc provides the opportunity for in-depth study of one or more areas of the language sciences. The programme is an 'umbrella degree', with a number of specialisation strands that follow a common structure.
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Division of Psychology & Language Sciences
83% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
This programme will give a comprehensive grounding in the theory and practice of phonetics. Students will learn the core phonetic topics of speech production, speech acoustics, and speech perception, and will learn how phonetics relates to many other language-related disciplines.
The programme has a strong practical emphasis. It is designed primarily for graduates wishing to continue studying phonetics at PhD level, and for those wishing to use phonetics as a tool for investigation in related fields, e.g. historical linguistics, phonology, developmental linguistics, psychology, speech technology, etc.
The taught MSc in Phonetics will provide students with an intensive grounding in phonetics and related disciplines, its methodologies, research questions, and techniques of research.
Students will take options from a wide range of courses offered in Linguistics & English Language and related subject areas, and will write a dissertation project.
All students will be required to take the core courses. Those students who do not have a strong background in phonetics and phonology may also be required to take an introductory course in Phonology & Phonetics.
Courses will include lectures, tutorials, and lab practicals.
Assessment is by coursework, project, and/or exams and a dissertation project.
At the dissertation stage, students are assigned a supervisor with whom they meet to plan their reading and to discuss their work.
The taught MSc in Phonetics will give students all of the intellectual and practical skills to engage in phonetics research, either for its own sake, or as part of research in another sub-area of linguistics, speech technology, or speech pathology.
Students graduating from our programme will understand basic anatomy and physiology of speaking and hearing, phonetic typology, current theories of phonetics and its relationship to phonology and other parts of grammar, and how to test these theories using empirical data.
We offer a strong focus on practical skills: students will learn how to elicit and collect phonetic data, the mechanisms involved in recording sound, how to measure and analyse acoustic and articulatory components of speech, how to create and analyse perceptual experiments, as well as core elements of scripting and statistical analysis.
This course is primarily as a conversion course for students looking to do serious postgraduate work in phonetics, speech pathology, speech processing, forensic linguistics or related fields.
Students will also receive training in practical skills, e.g. statistics and computational techniques, which could be relevant for a variety of different fields.
This MSc gives students all of the intellectual and practical skills to engage in linguistics research, either for its own sake, or as part of cross-disciplinary research.
Students graduating from our programme will understand how to analyse key data in syntax, semantics, phonology, and morphology, how to theorise such data, and how to exploit empirical methods to test their theories.
The key aims of the programme are to:
We offer a strong focus on theoretical understanding: students will learn how to analyse data in the context of current theoretical understanding of linguistic structure at all levels, drawing on the expertise of the department, which is particularly strong in theory development, and will be well placed to compare and evaluate competing proposals, both from within the same theoretical model, and from competing models. Additionally, students will acquire the necessary data-elicitation skills, and skills in naturally occurring data in corpora.
All of these skills provide a firm foundation for further PhD study, either in Linguistics or in a related discipline that makes heavy use of core Linguistics (e.g. Developmental Linguistics, Sociolinguistics, etc.).
The programme is best suited to applicants whose academic background is in Linguistics, English Language, Philology or Cognitive Science.
The programme (a total of 180 credit points) requires students without a background in Linguistics to take the following five core courses totalling 50 credits:
Students with a background in Linguistics may be exempted from any or all of the courses at the Programme Director’s discretion.
Students will also need to choose, under the guidance of the programme director, additional course options (totalling 70 credits for students with no background) from an approved list of level 11 courses; students who are exempted from any of the courses listed will have to choose courses to ensure that their total number of credits excluding the dissertation comes to 120.
It is possible for students to take up to 20 credits of their optional courses from other MSc options offered within the School subject to the Programme Director’s approval.
All students will be required to write a dissertation of approximately 8,000 words.
Students graduating from this new programme will understand how contemporary research approaches the study of language.
Students will acquire and enhance the following professional/subject-specific/practical skills:
Further entry requirements: International applicants should be aware that full registration with the RCSLT entails completion of a probationary period of clinical practice in the UK after the successful completion of the degree. It may be necessary to confirm with the professional body in your home country that this qualification is recognised and that full registration in the UK will entitle you to practice in your home country.
This course is for people with a relevant degree seeking to refocus their studies into the area of speech and language therapy. It will enable you to register with the Health and Care Professions Council and the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT) to practise as a speech and language therapist in the UK.
As a speech and language therapist, you will assess, diagnose and treat children and adults with a wide range of communication difficulties. This will include developmental disorders and speech and language problems resulting from injury, stroke and disease. You will also develop strong practical skills as well as a sound understanding of the theory of speech and language therapy.
There is a major clinical studies (ie placement) element to this course and clinical work is underpinned by modules in linguistics, psychology and biological and medical sciences. Although every effort is made to arrange summer block placements to suit students’ circumstances, this is not always possible and students must be prepared to be flexible about placement location and timing. Students are responsible for any travel and/or accommodation costs incurred during placements.
Teaching will include a mix of lectures, tutorials, student-led seminars, clinical placement experience, case study analysis and individual project work. Emphasis will be placed on integrating clinical and university based learning opportunities and on independent study. Your performance will be assessed by a combination of course work including essays, reports, presentations, vivas and examinations, as well as clinical practical assessments.
Each module which you study on campus will require you to attend classes and carry out independent work. Your attendance at placement is compulsory and your attendance at QMU-based modules is expected. Classes will be spread over the whole week, except for placement days when you will be off campus. This is a full-time course, with the expectation that classes, independent study and placement together require 35 - 40 hours of dedicated time each week.
The course provides graduates, including those who complete the PgDip, with eligibility to register with the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists and the Health and Care Professions Council to practice in the UK.
Foundations for Speech and Language Therapy/ Linguistics 1: Introduction to Linguistics/ Neurology for SLT and Audiology/ Adult Acquired Language and Cognitive Communication Disorders/ Linguistics 2: Clinical Linguistics/ Disorders of Speech and Fluency/ Manual Handling/ Dysphagia (Developmental and Acquired)/ Within-Semester Clinical Placement 1/ Professional Practice for SLT 1/ Biological and behavioural Science for SLT: Typical Processes/ Developmental Disorders of Language and Communication/ Intellectual Disability, Physical and Sensory Impairment/ Linguistics 3: Linguistic Processing and Variation/ Within-Semester Clinical Placement 2/ Motor Speech Disorder, Voice Disorder, Cleft Lip and Palate/ Clinical Contexts/ Within-Semester Clinical Placement 3/ Professional Practice 2/ Research Methods
If studying for the MSc, you will also complete a dissertation (60 credits).
Most graduates work within the NHS in community clinics, schools and hospitals. Some graduates have gained research posts and some have gone on to achieve higher degrees. Some graduate Speech and language therapists may wish to seek employment outside the UK. For further information about how and where this qualification can be used outside of the UK please contact the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists.