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Masters Degrees (Minority Languages)

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Today, there are around 6-7,000 languages spoken in the world and it is widely agreed that at least half of those are under threat of extinction within 50 to 100 years. Read more
Today, there are around 6-7,000 languages spoken in the world and it is widely agreed that at least half of those are under threat of extinction within 50 to 100 years. Language documentation is a new sub-discipline within linguistics that has emerged as a response to the growing crisis of language endangerment. It emphasises data collection methodologies, in two ways: first, in encouraging researchers to collect and record a wide range of linguistic phenomena in genuine communicative situations; and secondly, in its use of high quality sound and video recording to make sure that the results are the best possible record of the language.

The MA programme in Language Documentation and Description is intended for students who wish to specialise in the documentation and description of languages, with a focus on minority and endangered languages. This specialist MA is characterised by an integrated core of subject offerings that are oriented around issues in language documentation and description, plus a series of options in linguistics, applied linguistics, and language studies.

The programme is formulated with two main pathways:

MA Language Documentation and Description [Language Support and Revitalisation] provides an introductory overview of the study of language as well as courses geared at enabling students to support endangered and minority language communities in a number of ways. This pathway is open to students with or without a background in linguistics.

MA Language Documentation and Description [Field Linguistics] provides students with a sound knowledge of state-of-the-art methods and technology for language documentation and description with an emphasis on endangered and minority languages. This pathway is open to students who already hold an undergraduate major in linguistics/applied linguistics, or an MA in linguistics.

This course is part of the Endangered Languages Academic Programme (ELAP), which specifically aims to advance the documentation and description of endangered languages. ELAP also runs seminars, workshops, and intensive courses on the documentation of endangered languages. The programme is funded by the Lisbet Rausing Charitable Fund, and forms part of the Hans Rausing Endangered Languages Project (http://www.hrelp.org/).

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/linguistics/programmes/malangdocdesc/

Structure

The MA Language Documentation and Description (LDD) consists of three components: core courses, option courses and dissertation research. This degree programme is formulated with two different pathways; one specialising in Language Support and Revitalisation and the other specialising in Field Linguistics.

Regardless of the pathway they chose, all students take the equivalent of 2 full units as core courses, and the equivalent of 1 full unit as option courses and submit a Masters dissertation at the end of the year. The MA may be taken part-time, over two or three years, and there is a possibility for transferring between the two pathways for part-time students.

- MA Language Documentation and Description [Language Support and Revitalisation]

This pathway is open for full-time study to students with or without a BA in linguistics and provides an introductory overview of the study of language as well as courses geared at enabling students to support endangered and minority language communities in a number of ways. For part-time options and details please see the MA Handbook.

- MA Language Documentation and Description [Field Linguistics]

This pathway is open to students with a BA in Linguistics and equivalent and provides students with a sound knowledge of state-of-the-art methods and technology for language documentation and description with an emphasis on endangered and minority languages. For part-time options and details please see the MA handbook.

- Optional Courses

Any course/s to the value of 1 unit from the list of running Linguistics PG courses.

Programme Specification

MA Language Documentation and Description - Programme Specifications 2012/13 (pdf; 29kb) - http://www.soas.ac.uk/linguistics/programmes/malangdocdesc/file80773.pdf

Faculty of Languages and Cultures

Six of the academic departments are devoted to teaching and research in the languages, literatures and cultures of Africa, China and Inner Asia, Japan and Korea, the Near and Middle East, South Asia, and South East Asia, with the seventh teaching and conducting research in Linguistics. The Language Centre caters to the needs of non-degree students and governmental and non-governmental organisations. It maintains a huge portfolio of courses, including year-long diploma programmes, weekly evening classes in about 40 different African and Asian languages, and tailored intensive one-to-one courses. The Language Centre also offers courses in French, Portuguese and Spanish.

Their teaching is in three main areas:
- language competence acquisition;
- textual and cultural studies - both comparative and language-specific, and covering not only 'literature' in a strict sense but also visual media, performance, folklore, translation etc.;
- language studies with linguistics at its core - including the prestigious Hans Rausing Endangered Languages Project.

The Faculty is also home to the Centre for Cultural, Literary and Postcolonial Studies (CCLPS) (http://www.soas.ac.uk/cclps/).

While SOAS as a whole represents the most substantial concentration in the Western world of expertise dedicated to African, Middle Eastern and Asian studies, the Faculty of Languages and Cultures is heavily committed to teaching and research grounded in a knowledge of the principal languages and cultures of two thirds of humankind.

Department of Linguistics

The department is a centre for linguistic study in an unparalleled range of languages, many of which we are documenting for the first time. They include languages of Africa, the Near and Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia, Central Asia, Australia, the Pacific, and Siberia. The department has close academic ties to the rest of our faculty, the Departments of Africa, China and Inner Asia, Japan and Korea, the Near and Middle East, South Asia, and South East Asia, as well as the Language Centre.

The research interests of members of staff cover a wide range of theoretical and applied aspects of linguistics, including syntax, phonology, semantics, information structure, sociolinguistics, historical linguistics, linguistic typology, language documentation and description, language contact and multilingualism, language support and revitalisation, language archiving, lexicography, language pedagogy, translation studies, and the studies of individual languages and language families.

View Degree Programmes - http://www.soas.ac.uk/linguistics/programmes/

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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The Modern Languages MPhil is a research-based programme. You can specialise in topics in the languages of. Chinese, French, German, Japanese and Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American studies. Read more
The Modern Languages MPhil is a research-based programme. You can specialise in topics in the languages of: Chinese, French, German, Japanese and Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American studies. Specialism is also possible in translating and interpreting.

The Modern Languages MPhil is offered through the School of Modern Languages. We offer expert supervision in the following areas:

Chinese

-Chinese translating and interpreting
-Chinese numerology, number and gender in nursery rhymes (Dr V Pellatt)
-Cross-cultural studies between China and the West
-Chinese modernity studies
-Modern Chinese literature and culture
-Chinese-English translation
-Global Chinese diaspora studies
-Chinese-American studies
-Cultural theory (Prof J Qian)
-Contemporary society, especially identity, ethnicity and religion
-Minority nationalities (eg Xinjiang or Uyghur studies)
-Chinese state or popular nationalism and national identity
-Islam in China
-Performing arts, music cultures and popular culture in mainland China (Dr J Smith Finley)
-Transnational Chinese cinema
-Stardom
-Independent documentary filmmaking
-Gender and sexuality in Chinese media (Dr S Yu)

French

-Contemporary women's writing (Dr Robson, Dr El-Maïzi)
-19th century literature and culture (Prof Harkness, Prof Cross)
-Dialectology (Dr Hall)
-French and Algerian cinema (Prof Austin, Dr Leahy)
-History, politics and gender (Prof Cross, Prof Harkness)
-Language change (Dr Hall, Dr Waltereit)
-Popular culture (media, sport, music) and public policy (Dr Dauncey)
-Postcolonial cultures (Prof Austin, Dr El-Maïzi)
-Trauma and culture (Prof Austin, Dr Robson)

German

-20th century German and contemporary literature (Dr T Ludden, Dr B Müller)
-GDR literature and censorship (Dr B Müller)
-Representations of the Holocaust and/or World War II (Dr B Müller)
-Literature and philosophy - cultural and critical theory (Dr T Ludden)
-Women's writing (Dr T Ludden)
-Medieval German and comparative literature (Dr E Andersen)
-Morphological theory - morphology, phonology and dialectology of German and Dutch (Dr C Fehringer)

Japanese

-Gender studies (Dr G Hansen)
-Popular culture, film and media studies (Dr G Hansen, Dr S Yoshioka)
-Political studies (Dr G Hansen, Dr S Yoshioka)
-Literary studies (Dr G Hansen)

Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American studies

-Anthropology, anthropological linguistics and sociolinguistics of Latin America, including Quechua language (Prof Howard)
-Semantics, philosophy of language, history and spread of Spanish in Latin America, Latin American dialects and Creole (Prof Mackenzie)
-Political, social and intellectual history of Latin America in the 19th and 20th centuries, especially Brazil and Southern Cone (Prof Hentschke)
-History of education in Latin America in 19th and 20th century Latin America (Prof Hentschke, Dr Oliart, Prof Howard)
-Discourses of race and identity in Latin America (Prof Howard, Dr Oliart, Dr Morgan)
-Latin American film, literature and theatre (Dr Page)
-Spanish and Latin American cultural history and popular culture (Dr Catala Carracso, Dr Morgan, Dr Oliart, Dr Fernández)
-Catalan nationalism (Dr Catala-Carrasco)
-Spanish novel (Dr Catala Carrasco)

Translating and Interpreting

We can offer supervision for projects involving English plus Catalan, Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Quechua, Spanish, Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian.

Our research specialisms are:
-Interpreting (Dr Y Chen, Dr M Jin, Dr V Pellatt, Dr F Wu)
-Psycholinguistics of interpreting and translating (Dr M Jin)
-Translating literature (Dr F Jones, Dr V Pellatt)
-Translation and culture (Dr Y Chen, Dr F Jones, Dr V Pellatt)
-Translation and ethics, ideology and power (Prof R. Howard, Dr F Jones, Dr V Pellatt)
-Translation products, processes and strategies (Dr Y Chen, Dr M Jin, Dr F Jones, Dr V Pellatt)
-Translator and interpreter training and assessment (Dr Y Chen, Dr V Pellatt, Dr F Wu)
-Reflective/autonomous learning and educational psychology (Dr Y Chen, Dr F Wu)
-Audiovisual translation studies (Dr Y Chen)

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The MA in Comparative Literatures and Cultures gives you the opportunity to study the encounters and exchanges between literatures and cultures across Europe and beyond. Read more
The MA in Comparative Literatures and Cultures gives you the opportunity to study the encounters and exchanges between literatures and cultures across Europe and beyond. We welcome graduates of all arts and humanities disciplines.

You will become acquainted with the theory and practice of comparative cultural study, and consider how concepts of national cultures cross borders and interact with ideas of the global and transnational. You will gain a thorough grounding in cultural theory, critical reading and research skills, and put this theoretical knowledge into practice by studying topics and themes that span the disciplines, national contexts and time periods taught by experts in the School of Modern Languages.

While knowledge of a foreign language is not a requirement for this programme, you will have the opportunity to learn a language at a variety of levels, from beginner to advanced, and to engage with material in foreign languages throughout the MA. The programme culminates in a dissertation, an extended piece of original academic research.

As a postgraduate, you will be considered a full member of the academic community, with the opportunity to participate in the many research seminars and conferences taking place within the Faculty of Arts.

Programme structure

Core units
-Institutions of Culture
-Cultural Encounters
-Research Skills

Optional units
You will take two additional optional units from the wide range available in the School of Modern Languages, or more broadly across the faculty. Optional units can vary but may include:
-Global Cultures of the Book
-The Cultural Imagination of Gender
-Theories of Visual Culture: Text and Image
-The Rise of the Novel in 19th-century Europe
-Tradition and Experimentation in 20th-century Literature
-Language and Society in Present and Past
-Regional and Minority Languages
-Foreign Language Skills for Graduate Students
-Supervised Individual Study
-Theorising Violence: Colonial Encounters and Anti-colonial Reactions

Following successful completion of the taught part of the programme, you will be required to complete a dissertation of 15,000 words.

Careers

Studying comparative literatures and cultures allows you to develop a range of analytical skills and a multi-cultural and interdisciplinary awareness that will allow you to excel in many different professions. Graduates of this programme will be well prepared for doctoral studies in the humanities and arts, as well as careers in business, publishing, law, the civil service, teaching and journalism.

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The MA in Welsh and Celtic Studies offers you the chance to explore the relationship between literature, language, culture and identity across the centuries. Read more
The MA in Welsh and Celtic Studies offers you the chance to explore the relationship between literature, language, culture and identity across the centuries. From medieval literature to contemporary language planning and policy, the exact content of the course will be tailored to suit your individual research interests and based on our areas of expertise.

The areas of research that we offer and which are available to you include: creative writing through the medium of Welsh, language policy and planning, language acquisition, sociolinguistics, performance theory, medieval and modern prose and poetry, translation theory and methodology, ethnology and folk studies, creative writing, children’s literature, gender studies and literary theory and criticism. Great emphasis is set on placing the School’s academic research within a comparative international context.

Working with leading experts in these fields will allow you to develop advanced academic skills in your chosen area of study and undertake original research. Examples of ground-breaking MA research in recent years include linguistic landscape mapping, creative literary criticism, intertextuality and medieval Welsh literature, and digital technologies and minority languages.

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The global era has stimulated transnational cultural flows (of people, practices and products) and local cultural complexities that were inconceivable even a generation ago. Read more
The global era has stimulated transnational cultural flows (of people, practices and products) and local cultural complexities that were inconceivable even a generation ago. Nowadays, individuals increasingly recognise not only their own cultural complexity but also the need to function effectively in culturally-diverse contexts ranging from the home and neighbourhood, to places of worship and recreation, to organisations and workplaces, and to societies and regions.

Through face-to-face interactions at home and overseas, through the media, and through digital communications, the need to live interculturally is fast becoming the norm for more and more of us rather than the exception experienced by a few. As a consequence, intercultural awareness and communication skills are now a necessary part of life for most people in most aspects of their lives.

This MA programme is run jointly by the School of Arts, Languages & Cultures, and the Manchester Institute of Education. It brings together a wide range of expertise, in order to explore the cultural complexities and diversity of our current times, from a variety of conceptual, disciplinary and professional perspectives. It invites students to consider what these complexities might mean for individuals in a variety of contexts and also to further develop their own intercultural awareness and skills. The degree is designed for a broad range of students who are interested in intercultural matters, both international and UK / EU students. Some knowledge of a foreign language is preferable although not a prerequisite. Professional experience with an intercultural dimension to it is also valued but is not required. Those successfully graduating from the degree should find that it enhances their opportunities to gain employment in fields where intercultural competence is valued, for example in many multinational organisations, in international projects and NGOs, and in multicultural and immigrant communities. Here are some examples of posts obtained by MAIC alumni: officials in the United Nations agencies UNEP and UNHCR, university study abroad administrators, and administrative officers in cultural organizations with an international outlook.

Aims

Staff research comprises a wide range of areas of relevance for this degree; for example, in the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures we have major interests in languages and cultures including world languages (e.g. English, Chinese, Arabic, Russian, Spanish, French and Portuguese) as well as diaspora and minority cultures. In the Manchester Institute of Education we have major interests in intercultural communication in professional contexts and in intercultural training.

These interests allow us to offer a comprehensive programme which engages with cultural diversity and processes of cultural contact in a wide range of settings. Participation in the programme is, in itself, a valuable intercultural experience.

Teaching and learning

All optional course units are taught on a tutorial or seminar basis, with group sizes varying depending on the course unit. Tutorials give the opportunity for intensive scholarly work, with areas of concentration determined by the participants and their individual interests, which can be investigated in considerable depth. Seminars offer more opportunities for developing group work and presentation skills.

Coursework and assessment

Most course units are assessed by assignments and other marked work, rather than by written examination. Deadlines for assessment are stated in the Programme Handbook.

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The “Master in Advanced European and International Studies” provides an overarching and extensive view of the political, social, economic and cultural issues of the present times. Read more
The “Master in Advanced European and International Studies” provides an overarching and extensive view of the political, social, economic and cultural issues of the present times. Its encompassing teaching method and study-trips help the students to gain a complete understanding of international politics. The programme follows an original approach that distinguishes it from other Master's courses in European Studies and International Relations: the Trilingual branch is taught in three different languages -English, French and German- and in different study-locations -Nice, Canterbury and Berlin-.

Programme

Nice

The programme of the trilingual branch starts in Nice.
The first term encompasses introductory classes to all of the five modules (International Relations, European Integration, Economy and Globalisation, Federalism and Governance, and Professional Skills), completed by international conferences and seminars dealing with current world politics events.
This term is concluded with a mid-term exam at the beginning of January.

Canterbury

The second term takes place in Canterbury (UK), in co-operation with the University of Kent.
During this term, students choose three courses among the curriculum proposed by the School of Politics and International Relations of the University, in line with their specialisation.
At the end of the term, students write an essay for each of the three courses, as required by the University of Kent.
A one-week study trip to the European and international organisations in Strasbourg, Brussels and Luxembourg is organised during the second term.

Berlin

During the third term in Berlin, the programme aims at deepening the students’ knowledge of European integration and contemporary problems in international relations, through several thematic workshops.
Our partner in Berlin, the Institut für Europäische Politik provides a dialogue with European integration experts and offers an insight into political life in Berlin.Moreover, one of the workshops takes place at the University of Rostock, in North-East Germany.
The third term concludes with a final oral examination.

Master thesis

From September to December, students will write a substantial thesis based on original research, on a topic chosen with the permanent staff of the programme. This thesis is assessed by a board of examiners.

Internship

From January onwards, students will do an internship of a duration of at least three months. The internship can be accomplished in a European institution, an international organisation, national diplomacy, consultancies, non-governmental organisations or research institutes. At the end of the internship, students submit a substantial internship report, which is assessed by a board of examiners.

Curriculum

International Relations

Complex interdependency, dynamic power figurations and imbalances characterise today's world politics, an arena that is influenced by diverse actors in multi-level processes. Since its establishment in the early 20th century, the academic discipline of International Relations (IR) has been shaped by different schools of thought. Therefore, we will explore the major theories that draft a comprehensive or holistic explanation of international politics, in order both to identify presuppositions in public debates and to apply those theoretical tools to academic analysis.

European Integration

At the beginning of the new millennium, the European Union can look back at considerable achievements such as the completion of the monetary union. On the other hand, the EU remains confronted with greater challenges: new member states need to be fully integrated, the EU institutions must be reformed, a common identity for foreign and security politics must be reinforced, the acceptance of the EU amongst its Member States’ populations needs to be strengthened.

Federalism and Governance

This seminar attempts to provide an original perspective of contemporary political societies, especially concerning problems such as sovereignty, minority questions, democratic representation, and economic coordination.
This perspective is inspired by methods and different currents of federalist thought.

Economy and Globalisation

This course aims at giving an overview of the forces that drive world trade. International economics analyses the exchanges of goods, services and capitals between countries. It also analyses the conditions under which these exchanges take place. If the rule of free trade appears to have priority, in actuality, many countries resort to protectionism, in spite of WTO rules. Globalisation is at the heart of the concerns (or fears) of various players, such as political leaders, unions, businesses, households, civil society, etc. Are we witnessing the shifting of the world’s centre in favour of South and East Asia?

Professional Skills Workshops

This module equips the participants with the professional skills and competences that will enable them to work in the context of the European and international organisations. They will take actively part in several simulation games and follow workshops on project cycle management, intercultural management, as well as on mediation and negotiation.

Applications and Scholarships

Candidates can submit their application dossier by using the form available on the Institute’s website. They should also include all the relevant documents, or send them by post or e-mail. An academic committee meets regularly in order to review complete applications.
A limited number of scholarship funds can be awarded to particularly qualified candidates to cover some of the costs related to studies or accommodation. The deadline is 1 July of the current year.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for any enquiry.

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