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Masters Degrees (Speech And Language Processing)

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Accredited by the British Computer Society. Speech and language technology graduates are in demand, in areas like machine translation, document indexing and retrieval, and speech recognition. Read more

About the course

Accredited by the British Computer Society

Speech and language technology graduates are in demand, in areas like machine translation, document indexing and retrieval, and speech recognition. Our world-leading language and speech research staff will help you to develop the skills you need.

Prepare for your career

Our courses give you experience of how real-world projects work. We consult with big employers to ensure that you develop the skills and the personal qualities they’re looking for.

You’ll learn about the issues that matter in global business and industry. Our graduates go into academic and industrial research, the software industry, banking and finance. They work for companies such as Logica, IBM, Hewlett Packard, PWC, Vodafone, the BBC and HSBC.

About us

Our challenge is to use computation to understand all kinds of systems: computer systems, living systems and cognitive systems. Our research areas include robotics, machine learning, speech and language processing, virtual reality, computational systems biology and software verification and testing. It’s work that makes a difference to people’s lives.

Network and hardware

We have our own high-performance network so you can access our advanced computing facilities. There are labs for teaching smaller groups, wi-fi coverage throughout the department, and you can connect your own laptop to the network. Mobile devices and tablets are available for you to borrow for project work.

We also use specialised equipment: an immersive virtual reality facility, robotics hardware and an acoustic booth for speech processing research.

Core modules

Research Methods and Professional Issues; Dissertation Project; Text Processing; Natural Language Processing; Speech Processing; Speech Technology; Machine Learning and Adaptive Intelligence.

Examples of optional modules

Object-Oriented Programming and Software Design; Modelling and Simulation of Natural Systems; Theory of Distributed Systems; 3D Computer Graphics; Computer Security and Forensics; Testing and Verification in Safety-critical Systems; Intelligent Web; Software and Hardware Verification; Software Development for Mobile Devices; Virtual Environments and Computer Games Technology; Java E-Commerce; Network Performance Analysis.

Teaching and assessment

We use lectures, tutorials and group work. Assessment is by formal examinations, coursework assignments and a dissertation.

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This programme introduces students to the central concepts and the analytic techniques in speech science and language processing. Read more
This programme introduces students to the central concepts and the analytic techniques in speech science and language processing. It explores the inherent structure of language and how speech is produced and used in communication, addressing both the theoretical issues and the practical skills needed to analyse and model the processes involved. As the programme is situated at an intersection of disciplines, applicants are invited from a variety of disciplines, including engineering, computer science, linguistics, psychology, speech pathology and related areas. Students take six modules and undertake a research project leading to a 15,000 word dissertation. Four core modules are mandatory and two are elective options.

Core Modules:

Speech Processing 1: spectral analysis
Formal foundations of linguistic theories
Laboratory Phonetics and Phonology
Computational theories of grammar and meaning

The elective courses may include:

History and Globalisation of English
Corpus Linguistics
Technology, Language, and Communication
Speech Production, Hearing and Perception
Advanced Syntactic Theory
Speech Processing 2: acoustic modelling
Bilingualism and the Maintenance of Irish
Multilingualism

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This is a twelve-month MPhil programme, taught from within our Information Engineering Division, with a unique, joint emphasis on both machine learning and on speech and language technology. Read more
This is a twelve-month MPhil programme, taught from within our Information Engineering Division, with a unique, joint emphasis on both machine learning and on speech and language technology. The course aims: to teach the state of the art in machine learning, speech and language processing; to give students the skills and expertise necessary to take leading roles in industry; to equip students with the research skills necessary for doctoral study.

See the website http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/egegmpmsl

Course detail

By the end of the programme, students will have acquired:

- a knowledge of the fundamental techniques in machine learning and how to apply these techniques to a range of practical problems;
- a deep understanding of the fundamental problems in speech and language processing and the technologies that form the current state-of-the art;
- a comprehensive understanding of techniques, and a thorough knowledge of the literature, applicable to the area of their chosen research topic;
- presentation skills through presenting their research in progress;
- the methodological and other technical skills necessary for research in their chosen area;
- the ability to critically assess the technical literature in machine learning and speech and language processing and related topics;
- directly marketable skills in computing, speech and language processing, machine learning, and the data sciences;
- collaborative skills through working with other students on the practical exercises and with PhD students and Research Assistants while carrying out their research project;
- experience in large-scale computing for machine learning and speech and language processing;
- an understanding of how to define and conduct a research project.

Format

Students will spend the Michaelmas and Lent terms undertaking taught course modules. There will be an equivalent of ten 'full' core modules (ie, equivalent to a 16 lecture course), in addition to an elective option which can be chosen from a broad variety of modules. From mid-Lent term through the end of the course, students will conduct a substantial research project leading to a dissertation.

The taught modules will be in a range of styles: traditional lecture courses, lecture courses with associated practical classes, reading clubs, and seminar style modules. The course will emphasize coursework in several of the taught modules. Software projects aimed at implementing algorithms and modelling methods will be central to the practical modules and the research project.

Students can expect to receive reports at least termly on the Cambridge Graduate Supervision Reporting System. They will receive comments on items of coursework, and will have access to a University supervisor for their dissertation. All students will also have personal access to the Course Director and the other staff delivering the course.

Assessment

Students will write a dissertation of no more than 15,000 words. An oral presentation will be compulsory, and will contribute to the assessment of the dissertation.

Several of the core courses are examined wholly or mainly through coursework. Some elective options will also be examined through coursework.

Several of the core courses are examined wholly or mainly through written examination. Some of the elective options will also be examined through written examination.

At the discretion of the Examiners, candidates may be required to take an additional oral examination on the work submitted during the course, and on the general field of knowledge within which it falls.

Continuing

Students wishing to apply for continuation to the PhD would normally be expected to attain an overall mark of 70%.

How to apply: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying

Funding Opportunities

There are no specific funding opportunities advertised for this course. For information on more general funding opportunities, please follow the link below.

General Funding Opportunities http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance/funding

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The combined specialisation in language development provides a thorough multidisciplinary introduction to modern knowledge and current research in the inter-related aspects of human spoken communication. Read more

The combined specialisation in language development provides a thorough multidisciplinary introduction to modern knowledge and current research in the inter-related aspects of human spoken communication. It prepares students from different backgrounds for work in the rapidly developing fields of language development research, and their technological applications.

About this degree

Students take a core set of modules building a foundation to study current issues and research in the language sciences, specialising in language development. 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 two mandatory modules (45 credits), three specialisation modules (45 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and a research project (60 credits).

Mandatory modules

  • Introduction to the Brain and Imaging the Brain
  • Research Methods: Principles, Skills and Applications
  • Students select three specialisation modules from those below:
  • Developmental Language Disorders and Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Developmental Disorders of Language, Learning and Cognition
  • Development of Speech Perception and Production
  • Language Acquisition
  • Introduction to Children's Language Development
  • Semantic and Pragmatic Development

Optional modules

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:

  • Neuroscience of Language
  • Deafness - Cognition and language
  • Speech Processing
  • Conversation Analysis
  • Second Language Speech Learning
  • Phonetic Theory
  • Phonetic Theory
  • Foundations of Linguistics
  • Issues in Pragmatics
  • Current Issues in Syntax
  • Stuttering

Not all modules will run every year; some modules may require a minimum number of registered students.

Dissertation/report

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 Language Development) MSc

Careers

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, and in other UK 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, and statistics - are transferable skills that are very highly sought after outside academia.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Secondary School Teacher (Greek Language), Lysse Lanco Hellenique
  • Speech and Language Therapist, West London Mental Health NHS Trust
  • PGCE Early Years Teaching, Canterbury Christ Church University
  • PhD in Biomedical Science - Speech and Hearing, Harvard University

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.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Division of UCL 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.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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.



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Strongly interdisciplinary in nature, the Institute for Language, Cognition and Communication (ILCC) is dedicated to both basic and applied research in the computational study of language, communication, and cognition, in both humans and machines. Read more

Strongly interdisciplinary in nature, the Institute for Language, Cognition and Communication (ILCC) is dedicated to both basic and applied research in the computational study of language, communication, and cognition, in both humans and machines.

As technology focuses increasingly on language-based communication tools, research into the automation of language processing has become vital. ILCC offers you the broadest research scope in the UK, and a strong computational focus.

Our primary areas of research are:

  • natural language processing and computational linguistics
  • spoken language processing
  • dialogue and multimodal interaction
  • information extraction, retrieval, and presentation
  • computational theories of human cognition
  • educational and assistive technology
  • visualisation

Much of our research is applied to software development, in areas as diverse as social media, assisted living, gaming and education.

You may find yourself working closely with other departments of the University, particularly the School of Philosophy, Psychology & Language Sciences.

Many of our researchers are involved in cross-disciplinary research centres; for instance:

Centre for Speech Technology Research (CSTR)

The Centre for Speech Technology Research (CSTR) is an interdisciplinary research centre linking Informatics and Linguistics. Founded in 1984, it is now one of the world's largest concentrations of researchers working in the field of language and speech processing.

CSTR is concerned with research in all areas of speech technology including speech recognition, synthesis, signal processing, acoustic phonetics, information access, multi-modal interaction and dialogue systems.

The Centre is home to state-of-the-art research facilities including specialised speech and language-orientated computer labs, a digital recording studio, perception labs and a meeting room instrumented with multiple synchronised video cameras and microphones. There is also access to high-performance computer clusters, the University storage area network, a specialist library, and many speech and language databases

Centre for Design Informatics

Data driven innovation is transforming society and the economy. In the Centre for Design Informatics, we design systems for better human data interaction, in diverse settings such as health, culture, mobility and finance. We explore design from, with, and by data: the central concern is the design of flows of data which sustain and enhance human values. Relevant technologies range from the internet of things, through blockchains, to robotics, speech recognition, data visualisation, interaction design, and social computing.

Data Science EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training

The EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Data Science, based at the University of Edinburgh, is training a new generation of data scientists, comprising 50 PhDs over five intake years, with the technical skills and interdisciplinary awareness necessary to become R&D leaders in this emerging area.

Training and support

You carry out your research within a research group under the guidance of a supervisor. You will be expected to attend seminars and meetings of relevant research groups and may also attend lectures that are relevant to your research topic. Periodic reviews of your progress will be conducted to assist with research planning.

A programme of transferable skills courses facilitates broader professional development in a wide range of topics, from writing and presentation skills to entrepreneurship and career strategies.

The School of Informatics holds a Silver Athena SWAN award, in recognition of our commitment to advance the representation of women in science, mathematics, engineering and technology. The School is deploying a range of strategies to help female staff and students of all stages in their careers and we seek regular feedback from our research community on our performance.

Facilities

The award-winning Informatics Forum is an international research facility for computing and related areas. It houses more than 400 research staff and students, providing office, meeting and social spaces.

It also contains two robotics labs, an instrumented multimedia room, eye-tracking and motion capture systems, and a full recording studio amongst other research facilities. Its spectacular atrium plays host to many events, from industry showcases and student hackathons to major research conferences.

Nearby teaching facilities include computer and teaching labs with more than 250 machines, 24-hour access to IT facilities for students, and comprehensive support provided by dedicated computing staff.

Among our entrepreneurial initiatives is Informatics Ventures, set up to support globally ambitious software companies in Scotland and nurture a technology cluster to rival Boston, Pittsburgh, Kyoto and Silicon Valley.

Career opportunities

While many of our graduates pursue an academic career, others find their skills are highly sought after in the technology industry. A number of our students serve internships with large UK and international software developers, while others take up positions with major social media companies.



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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. Read more

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, learning and assessment

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.

Teaching hours and attendance

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.

Links with industry/professional bodies

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.

Modules

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).

Careers

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.

Quick Facts

  • The diploma course is the only postgraduate pre-registration course of its kind in Scotland. 
  • This course is the only one in the UK whereby speech and language therapists and audiologists are in the same department. 
  • Both these awards qualify you to register to work as a speech and language therapist in the UK.


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The combined specialisation in Speech and Hearing Sciences provides a thorough multidisciplinary introduction to modern knowledge and current research in the inter-related aspects of human spoken communication. Read more

The combined specialisation in Speech and Hearing Sciences provides a thorough multidisciplinary introduction to modern knowledge and current research in the inter-related aspects of human spoken communication. It prepares students from different backgrounds for work in the rapidly developing fields of speech and hearing research, and their technological applications.

About this degree

Students take a core set of modules and then have the opportunity to specialise in speech and hearing sciences. 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 two core modules (45 credits), three specialisation modules (45 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and a research project (60 credits).

Core modules

  • Introduction to the Brain and Imaging the Brain
  • Research Methods: Principles, Skills and Applications
  • Students select three specialisation modules from those below:
  • Development of Speech Perception and Production
  • Intermediate Phonetics
  • Experimental Phonetics
  • Phonetic Theory

Optional modules

Students select two modules from all those offered within UCL Psychology & Language Sciences, subject to availability and agreement with the Programme Director. Options include:

  • Deafness, Cognition and Language
  • Second Language Speech Learning
  • Web Programming for Psychology and Language Sciences
  • Stuttering
  • Advanced topics in Speech Perception
  • Current Issues in Production, Perception and Neural Processing of Speech

Not all modules will run every year, some modules may require a minimum number of registered students.

Dissertation/report

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 dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Language Sciences (with specialisation in Speech and Hearing Sciences) MSc

Careers

The majority of students who graduate from the 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

  • Early Stage Researcher, UCL and studying PhD in Linguistics, Karl-Franzens-Universitハt Graz (University of Graz)

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.

Why study this degree at UCL?

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.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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.



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This interdisciplinary MRes is aimed at applicants whose interest in language spans more than one discipline. Read more

This interdisciplinary MRes is aimed at applicants whose interest in language spans more than one discipline. Building on a first degree in linguistics, speech sciences, psychology, cognitive science, or a cognate discipline, students plan their own programme of study, selecting from a range of modules in several different UCL departments.

About this degree

Students are introduced to academic and key skills essential for all fields of research in speech, language and cognition, gain research training with relevant supervisors from the UCL Centre for Human Communication, and are able to assess and critically appraise theoretical and applied research relevant to speech, language and cognition.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of two core modules (30 credits), four options (30 credits), a research project (105 credits) and plan (15 credits).

Core modules

  • Foundation Course in Research
  • Research Methods
  • Theoretical Frameworks
  • Research Plan

Optional modules

In the Theoretical Frameworks module students choose and follow teaching from a total of four modules across the Division of Psychology and complete two cross-disciplinary projects examining aspects from two modules each term. These modules are chosen from at least two of the following fields of study:

  • Auditory Processing
  • Speech Processing: Perception and Production
  • Phonetics and Phonology
  • Syntax and Morphology
  • Semantics and Pragmatics
  • Language Development
  • Language Processing and Pathology
  • Cognition and Communication
  • Neurobiology of Language
  • Theory Construction and Modelling

There is no set list for these modules and students will choose modules which complement their intended research in consultation with the Programme Director.

Dissertation/report

All students undertake an independent research project on an aspect of speech, language and cognition which culminates in a research plan of 3,000–6,000 words and a dissertation of 10,000 words.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of small group teaching, seminars, student-led research tutorials, self-study materials, supervised laboratory placement, lectures and computer-based practical classes. It is largely assessed by coursework, with only the statistics component being assessed by exam. The research project is assessed by dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Speech, Language and Cognition MRes

Funding

A small number of ESRC studentships may be available each year. These are generally based on a combined application for PhD and taught postgraduate study over four years. Students interested in these studentships should contact the research department where they are interested in PhD study.

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

Careers

A large proportion of our students go on to study for a PhD and pursue a career in academia. The MRes is excellent preparation for a PhD degree and we have been very successful at getting candidates on to funded programmes. A number of graduates have returned to clinical practice as specialised speech and language therapists, or have gone on to work as researchers. Others go on to work in other fields ranging from business to education. The skills that the MRes develops – independent research, presentation skills, and statistics – are very highly sought after outside academia.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Speech And Language Learning Therapist, Whittington Health NHS
  • PhD in Education, University of Oxford
  • PhD in Psychology, University of Nottingham
  • PhD in Speech, Language and Cognition, UCL
  • Researcher, University of Cambridge and studying PhD Autism, University of Cambridge

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL Psychology & Language Sciences undertakes world-leading research and teaching in mind, behaviour, and language.

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, and cognition.

Opportunities for graduate students to work with world-renowned researchers exist in all areas of investigation, from basic processes to applied research. The division offers a supportive environment including numerous specialist seminars, workshops, and guest lectures.



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This intensive programme offers an exciting opportunity to learn from world leaders in both informatics and linguistics. Read more

This intensive programme offers an exciting opportunity to learn from world leaders in both informatics and linguistics. Drawing from our cutting-edge research, the programme’s content covers all areas of speech and language processing, from phonetics, speech synthesis and speech recognition to natural language generation and machine translation.

This flexible programme provides research or vocational training and can be either freestanding or lead to PhD study. The modular nature of the programme allows you to tailor it to your own interests.

Taught by leading researchers from Linguistics & English Language, the Centre for Speech Technology Research and the School of Informatics, this programme combines elements of linguistics, computer science, engineering and psychology.

You will develop up-to-date knowledge of a broad range of areas in speech and language processing and gain the technical expertise and hands-on skills required to carry out research and development in this challenging interdisciplinary area.

Programme structure

You study two semesters of taught courses, followed by a dissertation.

Most core compulsory courses have both computational and mathematical content. A few optional courses need a stronger mathematical background. Courses in the second semester can be tailored to your own interests and abilities.

Compulsory courses:

  • Accelerated Natural Language Processing
  • Computer Programming for Speech and Language Processing
  • Speech Processing
  • Univariate Statistics and Methodology Using R

Option courses may include:

  • Introduction to Phonology and Phonetics
  • Automatic Speech Recognition
  • Machine Learning and Pattern Recognition
  • Machine Translation
  • Natural Language Understanding
  • Simulating Language
  • Speech Synthesis

Learning outcomes

This programme aims to equip you with the technical knowledge and practical skills required to carry out research and development in the challenging interdisciplinary arena of speech and language technology.

You will learn about state-of-the-art techniques in speech synthesis, speech recognition, natural language processing, dialogue, language generation and machine translation.

You will also learn the theory behind such technologies and gain the practical experience of working with and developing real systems based on these technologies. This programme is ideal preparation for a PhD or working in industry.

Career opportunities

This programme will provide you with the specialised skills you need to perform research or develop technology in speech and language processing. It will also serve as a solid basis for doctoral study.



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The combined specialisation in Neuroscience and Communication provides a thorough multidisciplinary introduction to modern knowledge and current research in the inter-related aspects of neuroscience, speech processing and language impairments where students have completed related previous study which may not include demonstrable experience in theoretical linguistics. Read more

The combined specialisation in Neuroscience and Communication provides a thorough multidisciplinary introduction to modern knowledge and current research in the inter-related aspects of neuroscience, speech processing and language impairments where students have completed related previous study which may not include demonstrable experience in theoretical linguistics.

About this degree

Students take a core set of modules building a foundation to study current issues and research in neuroscience and communication such as neurobioliogy, speech processing, developmental and acquired language disorders and linguistics. 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 dissertation (60 credits).

Core modules

  • Introduction to the Brain and Imaging the Brain
  • Research Methods: Principles, Skills and Applications
  • Introduction to Syntax
  • Students select two specialisation modules from those below:
  • Intermediate Phonetics
  • Neurobiology of Speech Processing
  • Neuroscience of Language
  • Seminar in Neurolinguistics

Optional modules

Students select two modules from all those offered within UCL Psychology & Language Sciences, subject to availability and agreement with the Programme Director. Possible options are listed below:

  • Conversation Analysis
  • Current Issues in Production, Perception and Neural Processing of Speech
  • Deafness - Cognition and Language
  • Designing and Analysing an fMRI Experiment
  • Developmental Disorders of Language Learning and Cognition
  • Developmental Language Disorders and Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Introduction to Event-Related Potential Techniques
  • Language Acquisition

Not all modules will run every year, some modules may require a minimum number of registered students.

Dissertation/report

All students undertake an independent research project on an aspect of speech, language and cognition which culminates in a research plan of 3,000-6,000 words and 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 Neuroscience and Communication) MSc

Careers

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.

Employability

This MSc is full of opportunities for students to improve reading, writing and communication skills generally. These opportunities include writing essays, oral presentations, critical reading of scientific articles, and group discussion. These skills are critical for success in a wide range of jobs. Likewise, the programme will help to improve critical thinking skills through the critical evaluation of scientific research. This skill is applicable to those careers requiring problem-solving. Lastly, the programme provides practical experience in conducting research, which is highly valuable to those interested in pursuing a research career.

Why study this degree at UCL?

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.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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.



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As a postgraduate researcher in Speech and Language Sciences you will carry out a major research project working with supervisors who are experts in your field. Read more
As a postgraduate researcher in Speech and Language Sciences you will carry out a major research project working with supervisors who are experts in your field.

We offer expert supervision in the following research areas:
-Links between the production and perception of speech
-Monolingual/bilingual speech and language development in children for a range of language(s), particularly Arabic
-Early years policy with a focus on language and communication
-Relation of socio-economic factors to language development
-Assessment, diagnosis and intervention for speech, language and communication impairment, including: primary speech and language impairment in children (including specific language impairment); verb and sentence processing deficits in people with aphasia; memory disorders following stroke; effectiveness of interventions for speech and language impairments; the psycholinguistics of word production; computational modelling of word retrieval

Our website provides further information on research areas. Our supervisors' current research interests, projects and publications are available from our staff profiles. The majority of our staff have hands-on professional experience in speech and language therapy, teaching, or English language teaching prior to entering academia.

We advise that you contact Carolyn Letts, Director of Postgraduate Research, or a member of our staff as a potential supervisor before applying. You will be asked to submit a short research proposal (1000 words max).

Delivery

Your attendance at Newcastle is flexible, depending on your field work or if you are away collecting data. You will have regular meetings with your supervisory team, supported by email and Skype.

You can choose to enter the annual competition for ESRC funded studentships through the ESRC Northern Ireland/North East (NINE) Doctoral Training Partnership. You should contact us well in advance of the February deadline if you are planning to apply.

You will be based in the School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences, which is very diverse with a high number of international students. You will have opportunities to attend seminars across the disciplines of speech and language sciences, education and applied linguistics and to engage with staff and fellow-students from all over the world. Many of our students already have well-developed professional careers and are inspired to explore research questions arising from their experience.

If you are based in the UK and wish to maintain your professional employment, part time study is a flexible option.

Our links with research centres and institutes provide opportunities for collaboration and cross-disciplinary seminars and interest groups. Our most important connections are with:
-Institute for Health and Society
-Centre for Research in Linguistics and Language Studies
-Centre for Research in Learning and Teaching

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This Masters in Speech, Language & Sociolinguistics will enable you to explore the links between producing and processing speech and language as part of everyday social interaction. Read more

This Masters in Speech, Language & Sociolinguistics will enable you to explore the links between producing and processing speech and language as part of everyday social interaction. The range of courses available for this programme provide the key linguistic, technical, and research skills to investigate different aspects of spoken and written language, to carry out your own sociolinguistic studies, and to design and implement speech and language experiments of your own.

Why This Programme

  • You'll be taught by expert academic staff who have directed and are currently directing research projects in speech, language and sociolinguistics (e.g. Seeing Speech, Sounds of the City, One Speaker Two Dialects, the Scots Syntax Atlas (SCOSYA), Scottish Corpus of Texts and Speech (SCOTS))
  • The flexibility of the Masters programme means that it is suitable for students who have little or no background in linguistics and also for students with some background who wish to carry out more sophisticated independent research in a particular area.
  • Our facilities include the Glasgow University Laboratory of Phonetics (GULP), which includes a speech recording studio.
  • English Language and Linguistics is currently within the Linguistics Pathway for the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Doctoral Training Partnership, which is based at the Scottish Graduate School of Social Science (SGSSS). The SGSSS offers excellent additional training courses for graduate students working in the social sciences in Scotland. 
  • You’ll also have access to the Scottish Graduate School for Arts and Humanities (SGSAH), providing you with relevant training courses for graduate students in speech, language and sociolinguistics.

Programme Structure

You will take:

  • Two core courses
  • Four optional courses

You will also produce an independent, small-scale research project.

Semester 1: September to December

  • English language and linguistics research training
  • Optional course
  • Optional course

Semester 2: January to March

  • Experimental design and data analysis
  • Optional course
  • Optional course

Summer: April to September

  • Independent research project

Career Prospects

Some students take our programme as a secondment from an ongoing teaching or professional education position held either here, or elsewhere in the world. Others continue into employment in language teaching, journalism, or other kinds of industrial or commercial research related to speech, language and sociolinguistics. The programme is also an excellent foundation to doctoral research either at Glasgow or elsewhere, and/or further training in speech and language therapy. 



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Discover how insights from linguistics help to explain how humans learn, understand and use languages. Read more
Discover how insights from linguistics help to explain how humans learn, understand and use languages. Our MA Psycholinguistics provides you with a thorough grounding in research from the perspective of linguistics on human language processing, the representation of language in the brain, and first and second language acquisition.

You cover the processing and acquisition of sounds, words and sentences, look at different kinds of language disorders, and investigate the relevance of data from human language processing to our understanding of the nature of language. You also learn how to design and conduct experiments, and analyse the results from them.

Our researchers are using experimental techniques to understand how children learn language, how adults process language, and what happens when language ability is impaired by brain disorders. We combine a wide range of methodologies: corpora, infant behavioural studies at the babylab, response time and eye movement measures for adults

You can choose areas of special study including:
-How words are represented and accessed in the mind
-How speakers understand sentences in real time
-Music, language and the brain
-Children’s English

We are one of the largest and most prestigious language and linguistics departments in the world, a place where talented students become part of an academic community in which the majority of research is rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’, placing us firmly within the top 10 departments in the UK and ranked among the top 150 departments on the planet according to the QS World [University] Rankings [2016] for linguistics.

If you want a global outlook, are interested in human communication, and want to study for a degree with real-world practical value in a world-class department, welcome to Essex.

Our expert staff

Our staff maintain excellent student-staff ratios with capped language-specific seminars.

In psycholinguistics, Sonja Eisenbeiss, Claire delle Luche and Fang Liu use experimental techniques to understand how children learn language, how adults process language, and what happens when language ability is impaired by brain disorders.

Specialist facilities

-An exciting programme of research seminars and other events
-Our Languages for All programme offers you the opportunity to study an additional language alongside your course at no extra cost
-Our ‘Visual World’ Experimental Lab records response times and eye movements when individuals are presented with pictures and videos
-Our Eye-Tracking Lab monitors eye movement of individuals performing tasks
-Our Psycholinguistics Lab measures how long it takes individuals to react to words, texts and sounds
-Our Linguistics Lab has specialist equipment to analyse sound
-Our Albert Sloman Library houses a strong collection of books, journals, electronic resources and major archives

Your future

Our MA Psycholinguistics can lead to further research in the form of a PhD, or can lead you to a career in areas such as speech therapy, teaching, publishing, journalism, administration and public service.

We work with the University’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Within our Department of Language and Linguistics, we also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil. We offer supervision in areas including language acquisition, language learning and language teaching, culture and communication, psycholinguistics, language disorders, sociolinguistics, and theoretical and descriptive linguistics.

Our graduates are successful in a wide variety of career paths. They leave Essex with a unique set of skills and experience that are in demand by employers.

Several of our MA Psycholinguistics graduates have taken up academic posts at top universities including the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics and the Universities of Tübingen, Hamburg, Kobe, and Thessaloniki.

Example structure

-Phonological Development
-Sentence Processing
-Experimental Design and Analysis
-Assignment Writing and Dissertation Preparation
-The Role of Age in Bilingual Development
-MA Dissertation
-Advanced Phonology (optional)
-First Language Acquisition (optional)
-Second Language Acquisition and Linguistics Theory (optional)
-American Languages (optional)
-Varieties of English (optional)
-Language Rights (optional)
-Semantics (optional)
-Language Learning (optional)
-English Syntax 1 (optional)
-Individual Differences in L2 Learning (optional)
-Syntactic Theory I (optional)
-Variationist Sociolinguistic Theory (optional)
-Sociolinguistic Methods 1: Data Collection (optional)
-Research Methods I (optional)
-English Syntax 2 (optional)
-Syntactic Theory II (optional)
-Sociocultural Linguistics (optional)
-Variation in English II (optional)
-Sociolinguistic Methods: Data Coding and Analysis (optional)
-Research Methods II (optional)
-Graduate Research Assignment (optional)
-Language Attrition (optional)
-Language in Context: From Pragmatics to Conversation Analysis (optional)
-Intercultural Communication: communicating across languages and cultures (optional)

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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. Read more

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.

About this degree

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).

Core modules

  • Introduction to the Brain and Imaging the Brain
  • Neuroscience of Language
  • Research Methods: Principles, Skills and Applications
  • Students select two specialisation modules from a group in one of these core areas:
  • Phonology
  • Semantics-Pragmatics
  • Syntax

Optional modules

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:

  • Deafness: Cognition of Language
  • Developmental Language Disorders and Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Language Acquisition
  • Rehabilitation of Acquired Neurogenic Communication Difficulties
  • Seminar in Neurolinguistics
  • Not all modules will run every year; some modules may require a minimum number of registered students.

Dissertation/report

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

Careers

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

  • Research Assistant and Patient Co-Ordinator, Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging
  • PhD in Linguistics, UCL
  • PhD in Psychology, University of Sheffield
  • PhD Researcher, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics and studying PhD in Neurobiology of Language, International Max Planck Research School
  • Research Assistant, University of Cambridge

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.

Why study this degree at UCL?

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.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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.



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This course is for teachers, speech and language therapists, and other professionals working with children with special educational needs. Read more

About the course

This course is for teachers, speech and language therapists, and other professionals working with children with special educational needs. You’ll develop your understanding of speech, language and communication and build on your existing skills. The course is delivered online, by distance learning, so you can gain a specialist qualification without having to leave your current job.

Your career

Your masters will give you the skills and knowledge to make a difference. Our MMedSci course provides the necessary training to meet the requirements of the UK Health and Care Professions Council which is the accreditation body for UK speech and language therapy. Our other courses provide professional development training. They can also lead to careers in university teaching and research.

How we teach

We have a reputation for high quality research in the field of human communication and its disorders. That research informs our teaching. We offer professional training for students who are considering speech and language therapy as a career. If you’re interested in a research career, we can prepare you for a PhD.

We also run professional development courses for students already working in the field, so you can study alongside your current job. We have links with the NHS, special schools and specialist charities to ensure that what we teach you is in line with current developments in the field.

We work with other departments across the University including the School of Education, the Department of Psychology, the Department of Computer Science and the School of English Language and Linguistics.

Core modules

PGCert, PGDip and MSc

Children’s Learning; Language and Communication; Spoken and Written Language; Developing an Evidence Base for Practice.

PGDip and MSc

Research Methods A; Research Methods B (optional for PGDip).

Examples of optional modules for PGDip and MSc levels only:

Case Study; Speech Difficulties 1: nature and investigation; Speech Difficulties 2: intervention and management; Research Methods B; Literacy 1: assessments and constructs; Literacy 2: difficulties and intervention; Developmental Disorders.

For Developmental Disorders, you can choose up to two specialist topics for further study, such as: Autism Spectrum Disorders; Specific Language Impairment; Language and Behaviour; Language and Environment; Learning Difficulties; Hearing Impairment; Auditory Processing Difficulties; Alternative and Augmentative Communication; Dysfluency; Dyslexia; Multilingual Contexts; Early Years; Adolescence.

MSc students also complete a dissertation.

Teaching

We provide material online for weekly study across the full calendar year. There are two or three (optional) study weekends per year in Sheffield. Essential reading material is available electronically. Online activities support your study and build links with tutors and other students.

Assessment

Modules are normally assessed by written assignments. MSc students are also assessed on their research dissertation.

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