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Course content

The Linguistics MA advances your knowledge of critical theory in theoretical linguistics and the philosophy of language, specifically with regard to the syntax/semantics interface, the semantics/pragmatics interface and grammar.

The MRes is designed for students who already have some background in linguistics and intend to progress to PhD study. It is designed as an enhanced route of entry to a PhD programme, giving you an opportunity to develop research skills early in order to be fully prepared for your doctorate.

Course structure

The programme is designed for both full-time and part-time students, with a flexible framework that can fit in with your professional and personal commitments. Modules are taught across the two semesters, usually in nine sessions per semester.

In addition, you are expected to work independently and engage with reading and research in your subject area. You will be offered support through tutorial supervision and the university's online virtual learning environment.

Areas of study

The Linguistics MA covers semantics, pragmatics (minimalism and contextualism), the philosophy of language, grammar, language variation and attitudes, language and identity (class, age, gender, ethnicity, social networks), language in interaction (politeness, speech accommodation, cross-cultural communication), feminist theory and linguistic theory, and ethnocentrism/racial prejudices in colonial discourse.

You approach these topics by: analysing and evaluating different approaches to studying the structure of the English language; engaging with theoretical frameworks which attempt to account for meaning in language; and examining the relationship between the philosophy of language and linguistics on one hand, and the influence of philosophical theories on the analysis of language on the other.


  • Grammar and the English Language
  • Semantics: Word Meaning
  • Pragmatics, Meaning and Truth
  • Topics in Sociolinguistics
  • Research Methods
  • Dissertation

One from:

  • Discourses of Culture
  • Semantics/Pragmatics Interface: Approaches to the Study of Meaning
  • Cultural and Critical Theory module

Careers and employability

The Linguistics MA prepares you for careers in linguistics, linguistic anthropology, forensic linguistics, speech therapy, sign language, journalism, writing, English language teaching, politics and sociology.

Visit the Linguistics (MA/MRes) page on the University of Brighton website for more details!




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Recipient: University of Brighton

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