Why do languages change? Why does your mobile device suggest funny completions for words you are typing? How did it happen that Finnish is spoken mostly in Finland, but its linguistic relatives are scattered over a larger area? How can you study a language that does not have a standard orthography? Why can you sometimes tell where other people come from just by their accent? Why do some people stick to their dialect, but others give it up when they move to the city? Should you try to support language diversity? Can we save languages that are spoken by a very small number of people? How can computer-synthesised speech be made to sound more human? Why do some languages seem so much more difficult to learn - are they inherently more complex?
This Master's programme will provide you with an understanding of the nature and diversity of human language and with the theoretical tools for working with language material. If you are interested in languages but are unable to decide which of them you want to study, this Master's programme offers several fields of specialisation. One of them might be just perfect for you.
During your studies, you will:
After completing your studies, you will be able to work independently in various fields that require multidisciplinary expertise in linguistic sciences. You will have the theoretical knowledge and skills that are required for postgraduate studies in the doctoral programme in language studies.
Further information about the studies on the Master's programme website.
Linguistic Diversity in the Digital Age is an integrated international programme that offers you a comprehensive view of all subfields of the science of language. As a student in the programme you will be able to choose among four specialist options: (1) General Linguistics, (2) Phonetics, (3) Language Technology, and (4) Diversity Linguistics.
General Linguistics gives you comprehensive in-depth training in a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches to language structure and language in use. Special emphasis is put on language typology in a global perspective as well as the documentation and description of endangered and previously undocumented and under-documented forms of speech.
Phonetics will introduce you to the tools for working with the articulatory, acoustic and perceptional aspects of human speech from a multidisciplinary perspective. At the more advanced level, you will become acquainted with the methods of experimental phonetics.
Language Technology combines linguistics with digital technology in an interdisciplinary approach with close links to computer science. The focus areas include natural language processing (NLP) for morphologically rich languages, cross-lingual NLP and language technology in the humanities.
Diversity Linguistics encompasses all aspects of linguistic diversity in time and space, including historical linguistics as well as the extralinguistic context of languages: ethnicities, cultures and environments. The areal foci in Diversity Linguistics are Eurasia and Africa.
These four specialist options interact at all levels. There is a study module common to all students in the programme regardless of the specialist option they choose. The integration of these four perspectives into one programme is unique - no similar programme exists anywhere else.
In the context of “Humanities”, the programme has the closest relationship to natural sciences, and many subfields of the programme involve methods directly linked to laboratory sciences, including digital technology and neurosciences.
The teaching in the programme includes lectures and seminars, practical exercise sessions, reading circles, fieldwork excursions, as well as work practice (internship). The broad spectrum of teaching methods guarantees optimal support for your learning processes.
This programme looks at language from a sociocultural perspective. It's designed for anyone with an interest in the relationship between language, culture and society but also provides a solid understanding of English language and linguistics.
The MA develops your understanding of historical and contemporary debates in (socio)linguistics and discourse analysis and enhances your analytic and linguistic skills by introducing different approaches to the analysis of written and spoken language use from a range of everyday and institutional contexts.
Topics covered include:
You're encouraged to engage with these topics by drawing on your own social, cultural and occupational backgrounds in class discussions and in your written work.
You're also encouraged to collect your own samples of written and spoken language use and learn to subject those to in-depth critical analysis.
This MA will draw on findings, theories and methodologies from: sociolinguistics, semantics, pragmatics, spoken and written discourse analysis, ethnography, semiotics, feminist stylistics; multimodal analysis; interactional sociolinguistics, conversational analysis, membership categorisation analysis, performativity and narrative analysis.
The programme’s distinct interdisciplinary ethos is also reflected in your opportunity to choose from a selection of relevant option modules in other departments in Goldsmiths.
On this programme you will complete two core modules, two option modules and one dissertation.
You may choose two linguistic options or one linguistic option and one option from other MA programmes within the College, where specifically approved by the Programme Co-ordinator.
You may also choose one non-linguistics module, either from our own department (English and Comparative Literature) or from another department. Please note that availability of options across the College varies, but typically you can choose from the following selection.
Please note that your choice of option module from another department needs to be discussed with the Programme Co-ordinator of the MA Sociocultural Linguistics in advance.
You also produce a dissertation. Dissertation topics in the past have included:
The best (UG or MA) linguistics dissertation is rewarded every year with the Hayley Davis Prize.
Approach to teaching
Our lecture/seminar sessions are designed to combine discussions of preparatory reading materials with tutor-led input and hands-on analyses of data/texts by students. We also tend to invite guest lectures as part of option modules and GoldLingS Seminar Series.
Our MA group is usually very tight-knit, students and student reps organise study/revision groups, online discussion forums, outings to lectures across London, and a number of social events.
Coursework; essays; examinations; dissertation; presentation
Transferable skills, including enhanced communication and discussion skills in written and oral contexts; the ability to analyse and evaluate a wide variety of spoken and written texts from informal as well as institutional settings; an understanding of the concept of communicative competence; the ability to organise information, and to assimilate and evaluate competing arguments.
Publishing, journalism, british council roles, public relations, teaching, research, translation, advertising, the civil service, business, industry, the media.
Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.
This course involves combining communication studies, applied linguistics, international management and intercultural communication.
Economic globalisation and rapid developments in ICT mean that many organisations now operate on an international scale, or at the very least interact with consumers, clients and/or partner organisations in other countries. Even ‘local’ companies and organisations may have a multicultural workforce, or offer their services or products abroad. As a result, communication has become increasingly international and intercultural.
Organisations seek to create communication strategies that support their overall strategy and objectives. In doing so, they need to interact with stakeholders who may have a variety of linguistic and cultural backgrounds. These stakeholders may include employees, customers, suppliers, financial backers or even local governments. In the Master’s specialisation in International Business Communication, you’ll learn about the all factors, including cultural and linguistic ones, that play a role in communication and need to be taken into account in order to create effective communication strategies.
In your future career as a business executive or communication specialist, you’ll need to be able to assess the quality, reliability and validity of the research that informs your practical decisions ‘on the job’. In other words, you’ll need to be able to judge whether existing research – as well as your own – complies with the ground rules of academic rigor. The programme therefore places emphasis not only on training your research skills but also on developing your awareness of what ‘good research’ entails.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/ibc
- This is one of very few programmes in Europe (and the only programme in the Netherlands) that also focuses on the cultural and linguistic dimensions of international business communication.
- The specialisation deals with theory and insights that are relevant to achieving effective communication in various organisational contexts; from interpersonal communication in a meeting with (multicultural) colleagues, to marketing communication aimed at reaching international target audiences.
- Students do a (group) internship in which they work towards solving a particular communication issue or answering a specific communication question for a company or organisation. This provides hands-on experience in a relevant organisational setting.
- This specialisation attracts students from different countries and because admission to the programme is selective (max. 50 students per year), you’ll be part of a small group of highly motivated Dutch and international students. This means that to a certain extent, your learning environment is international as well.
- Guest speakers are regularly invited to share their knowledge about current developments in business, management and organisational communication.
- Although the main focus is on international communication in larger, multinational companies, graduates of this programme will be able to apply what they’ve learned in a variety of organisations – for profit, non-profit or governmental institutes.
Languages form the heart of communication and that is why this Master’s specialisation is taught within Radboud University’s Faculty of Arts. The programme places a strong focus on the role that languages play in effective corporate communication. Of course, the languages used are not the only factor to consider in a multicultural environment - which is why you will be encouraged to also consider communication issues and strategy from an international management perspective.
In short, you’ll explore the impact of globalisation on business communication, the role of linguistic and cultural diversity in corporate communication, and the human and operational consequences of organisations’ language policy or strategies. In doing so, you’ll also come to understand how such issues can shape and affect an organisation’s performance.
With a Master’s specialisation in International Business Communication, you could pursue a career in government, semi-government, business or academia. For example, our graduates work as internal or external communication managers or press spokespeople in companies, government departments, health institutions or non-profit organisations. Many work in marketing communications at multinational companies, as communication trainers for consultancies, as social media managers or as PR consultants.
- International perspectives
Since the programme focuses on communication in international contexts, and on communication with international target groups, a sizable number of graduates have found jobs outside the Netherlands or with international organisations operating from the Netherlands.
- Wide range of communication functions
Job openings for our graduates can cover a wide range of communication functions, organisational types and (business) sectors. This is because organisations have increasingly come to realise that effective communication is essential to all organisational functions (e.g. marketing, PR, HRM, R&D, finance), and have made a real effort over the past decades to professionalise communications, making (international) business communication an increasingly important discipline.
Corporate communication involves orchestrating internal and external communication instruments to support an organisation’s core activities and to manage its relationship with different types of stakeholders. Due to the internationalisation of markets and businesses, corporate communication has gone global in recent years. Organisations that operate internationally need to take different cultures and language backgrounds into account when designing their communication. Culture and language(s) may affect international communication at three levels:
- The management level: e.g. when CEOs communicate with internal or external audiences
- The organisational level: e.g. when a company communicates about its Corporate Social Responsibility policy
- The marketing level: e.g. when products or services are promoted to an international audience in (corporate) advertising.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/ibc
This course helps you become a competent linguist who has an understanding of a wide array of topics ranging from how people learn and use language, to how the brain processes language, and how language and people influence each other.
Radboud University is renowned for its research and teaching in the field of linguistics. We have a dedicated research institute Centre for Language Studies (CLS) and also work closely with the Max Planck Institute and Donders Institute. You can choose from a wide range of advanced topics in fields as diverse as psycholinguistics, sociolinguistics, second language acquisition, language description, language testing and linguistic diversity. There is also a range of combined courses that allow students to learn about the very latest findings in interdisciplinary areas such as cognitive neuroscience.
All of our courses offer a nice mix of theoretical and practical knowledge: the courses situate insights from linguistic and language acquisition theory within the context of everyday communication and contemporary language use.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/english/education/masters/linguistics
Linguistics research at Radboud University was recently rated number 1 in the world wide university ranking. The Center for World University Rankings (CWUR) publishes annual rankings of the best universities world wide. Withing the subject field of Linguistics, our research topped the list. Research and education are closely intertwined in Nijmegen: in lectures and through research internships and assignments, students become familiar with the latest developments in linguistics research.
Radboud University offers two specialisations within the Linguistics programme.
- General Linguistics: With no mandatory courses, this specialisation gives you the most freedom to create your own programme.
- Language and Communication Coaching: This specialisation is for students wishing to learn how to teach English for specific purposes and to a wide range of target groups. You’ll learn to analyse a client's needs, how to design a training module to fit those needs, and how to teach it. Your knowledge in English linguistics will also be enhanced.
- You’ll be part of a truly international classroom with students from all over the world, speaking and learning all different languages. This will not only provide you with an interesting experience on the social and cultural front, it will also allow theoretical and practical insights into the linguistic issues you’ll be studying, as you consider how these apply to the various languages and language learners represented in your class.
- This programme offers the opportunity to do an internship in the second half of your programme. If you wish, this can also be done abroad. Our professors have access to a large national and international network and can assist you in finding a position that fits your interests.
- At Radboud University we can ensure that you’ll get plenty of one-on-one time with your thesis advisor.
- We pay special attention to the (practical) needs of international students. We have considerable experience with students from all over the world coming here to study and we help you settle into life in the Netherlands.
If you choose to study Linguistics in Nijmegen you will have a unique opportunity to put together your own programme. With the exception of your thesis, all subjects are optional. You can choose from a wide range of interesting advanced topics in fields as diverse as psycholinguistics, sociolinguistics, second language learning, language description and linguistic diversity. You will be working closely with top researchers. In fact, you will be in the middle of a research environment where important discoveries are being made and the chances are high that you will be involved in some of them.
We take care of our students and pay special attention to the (practical) needs of international students. We have a lot of experience with students from all over the world coming here to study and we help you to hit the ground running. The courses are very intensive and you will learn a great deal in one year. You can also expect to ‘grow' academically. There are great opportunities for internships at leading institutes in the Netherlands.
Linguistics is taught at a very high level in Nijmegen, and we are known for our excellent teaching and research. We have our own dedicated research institute and also work closely with the world-renowned Max Planck and Donders Institutes. There are a range of combined courses that allow students to incorporate the very latest insights in crossover areas such as cognitive neuroscience. The great thing about studying here is the integrated approach. There are no purely theoretical courses; everything is taught in the context of every-day communication.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/english/education/masters/linguistics