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Course Content

Course content

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.


Visit the Language Sciences (with specialisation in Language Development) (MSc) page on the University College London website for more details!

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