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Forensic Linguistics (MA/PgDip)


Course Description

The MA/Diploma in Forensic Linguistics is an innovative programme which provides students with theory and techniques to critically analyse the use of language in a variety of legal contexts and to critically evaluate expert testimony on forensic matters. Students receive a grounding in research methods and issues and debates in forensic linguistics. They acquire tools for evaluating and examining a range of legal language in relation to issues such as power and comprehensibility. They develop skills in research and writing at higher degree level and learn to engage with the legal system as a site of social life where important decisions are made through language.


On successful completion of the MA programme graduates will have achieved the following outcomes:
• the application of descriptive data analysis skills in a wide range of spoken and written discourse contexts within the legal process, including emergency calls, police interviews, courtroom interaction, judicial judgment
• a critical understanding of investigative data analysis skills in both spoken and written discourse contexts, including such areas as speaker identification, disputed authorship and plagiarism detection;
• critical understanding of the work of linguists as advisers and activists on legal systems and settings.

Course Structure:

The MA/Diploma in Forensic Linguistics is a modular programme with modules taught over two semesters (PG Diploma or for the MA, Stage 1), followed by a supervised dissertation (for the MA, Stage 2) of between 14,000 and 20,000 words between May and September when taken as a 1 year, full time degree programme.

Assessment of the taught component is by coursework only.

The part-time modular programme involves following the same modules over two years with the dissertation being completed between May and January.

Students take the four compulsory modules listed below which provide a thorough and wide-ranging view of language and the law and forensic linguistics from a variety of methodological and theoretical perspectives along with a vital grounding in research methods and processes:

• Forensic Linguistics I: Language in the Legal Process
• Forensic Linguistics II: Linguistic Expertise in the Legal Process
• Project in Forensic Linguistics
• Foundation module: Core Skills, Principles and Issues involved in Language and Communication Research
Below is an indicative list of optional modules:
• Discourse and Social Interaction
• Multimodality
• Phonology
• Language Description
• Second Language Development and Pedagogy
• Qualitative Research Methods
• Lexis
• Quantitative Research Methods

Further information about the MA can be found on the school website.

Visit the Forensic Linguistics (MA/PgDip) page on the Cardiff University website for more details!

Videos
(Student Profile)

Amy Osmun (MA Forensic Linguistics)

"I decided to pursue postgraduate study because of the advantages it would afford me in seeking employment after completion and also because I wanted to pursue further study in linguistics. Cardiff University is the only university in the world to offer a taught postgraduate degree in Forensic Linguistics and I wanted to be a part of this exciting new venture. The staff here at Cardiff have been incredibly open and friendly, as well as understanding of my initial confusion as to how exactly the university system worked in the UK. They were readily available for questions and discussion outside of lectures and truly wanted to see me succeed in my degree."

(Student Profile)

Chris Müller (MA in Critical and Cultural Theory)

Since starting the MA in Critical and Cultural Theory I have been encouraged to explore a vast array of different ideas and have been given space to develop my interests. The staff are very supportive; they are always open to discuss my work and point me toward material I would not have normally considered. I thoroughly enjoy this open yet rigorous engagement with my studies.

The course is a great opportunity to meet students with similar interests but from a variety of backgrounds not confined to the UK or a single discipline. I have enjoyed this diverse and challenging environment and I plan to continue my studies at PhD level and fully recommend the Critical and Cultural Theory MA programme.

(Student Profile)

David Evans

I've thoroughly enjoyed my MA course in Ethics and Social Philosophy at Cardiff. There's a good choice of modules and a great range of expertise across the department, spanning the analytic / Continental divide, so whatever your interests you'll have plenty of support. I've taken modules on Marx, Feminism, the Frankfurt School and the history of Political Philosophy, and whether I was studying something I did at undergraduate level in greater depth, or encountering something completely new, I found the modules stimulating and the staff very supportive. Highly recommended!

(Student Profile)

Heather Strange

I chose the MA course because there was a balance between taught elements and independent research-there were plenty of modules to choose from, and having studied in the department before knew the quality of teaching was high.

The MA was challenging and stimulating, I feel I have expanded my philosophical knowledge and most of all improved analytic skills and writing skills. Also the demands of a one-year course meant time management was essential. The qualification has certainly helped me gain employment (I am working as a researcher for Cardiff University) and could also lead on to further academic study.

The staff are all very supportive and willing to spend time discussing issues with students, also students are made to feel like they are contributing to philosophical discussion in general, and perhaps helping lecturers develop their own ideas.

The modules were all very interesting and taught with enthusiasm - lecturers seem to have very genuine interest in the subject and this passes on to students.

(Student Profile)

Ruth T Calway (MA in Teaching and Practice of Creative Writing)

"Cardiff is a beautiful and exciting city, with a dynamic dialogue between heritage and aspiration. The University is at the heart of this dynamic, with thriving schools of academic and artistic endeavour, and therefore the ideal place for a writer to develop his or her talent.

Cardiff’s Creative Writing MA offers a rich programme, combining personal mentoring with writer’s workshops; inspirational guidance from in-house teacher/writers and from visiting writers; and performance opportunities. Most uniquely, it also offers training and direction for the teaching of Creative Writing in the academy and in the community. For a mature student seeking a new career that will be personally fulfilling as well as practically based, it is ideal.

The department somehow manages an intensive programme with a light touch; enjoyment is the key word of the whole enterprise. The support and friendliness of the staff has been extraordinary; they intuit the needs of each and every member of the group. The experience of being part of my particular group - diverse in culture, age and gender - has been a tremendous privilege and will undoubtedly enrich my writing and teaching."

(Student Profile)

Sam Austen

I chose to study for my MA in Applied Linguistics at Cardiff because of the excellent reputation of the department and the combination of modules offered...The experience of studying for an MA at Cardiff was invaluable for me. I learned a lot and enjoyed my time, thanks to the expertise and friendly approach of the staff in the department. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it!


(Scholarship)

Cardiff University Masters Excellence Scholarships - No. of awards TBC

“This scholarship package will give high-calibre students the opportunity to study at a world-leading, research-intensive university and help ease the associated financial burdens.”Professor Colin Riordan, Vice-ChancellorWe are pleased to announce that the Taught Master's Excellence Scholarship Scheme for 2016/17 entry has been confirmed.We are committed to invest up to a total of £500,000 in this high value competitive scholarship scheme to support UK and EU students who are planning to start an eligible master's programme in September 2016.The scholarships are each worth a minimum of £3,000 and will be awarded in the form of a tuition fee discount.Scholarships will be awarded based on academic excellence.

Value of Scholarship(s)

from £3,000

Eligibility

Eligible programmes include taught full-time and part-time taught programmes leading to a master's. Not included are our distance learning programmes and taught programmes leading to a postgraduate certificate, postgraduate diploma, as well as research master's such as the MPhil and MRes.‘Home’ and ‘EU’ students only (as classified for fee paying purposes, tuition fee status is determined after submitting an application to study) who are accepted on to an eligible postgraduate taught programme leading to a master's degree, and with a firm focus on academic excellence.For applicants from countries outside the European Union, we also offer a range of highly prestigious international scholarships.

Application Procedure

We have two deadlines after which scholarship decisions will be made:6 April and 27 July 2016.The Masters Excellence Scholarship application form can be accessed once you have submitted an application to study to an eligible postgraduate taught programme leading to a master’s degree. Please note the additional details on our website and in the guidance documents provided.

Further Information

http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/funding-and-fees/masters-excellence-scholarships


(Scholarship)

Santander Bursary - 3 Awards

Cardiff University School of English, Communication and Philosophy is pleased to announce three partial-fees bursaries of £4k each towards taught postgraduate studies in the academic year 2016-2017. The bursaries, funded by Banco de Santander, will be attached to one of the following programmes:
- MA in Language and Communication Research
- MA in Forensic Linguistics
- MA in Applied Linguistics.

Value of Scholarship(s)

4000

Eligibility


To be eligible for the bursary you must be accepted onto one of the MA programmes listed in this article. For more details of the programme and how to apply see the link attached:

Application Procedure

Guidelines for making an application:
There is not a dedicated application form for this award; instead you just need to have made an online application (hard copy applications are also available via the website) stating that you wish to be considered. If you have already applied to us, then please contact Tim Collins ([email protected]) to let us know that you wish to be considered.
As part of an online application you must ensure that the necessary documents have been uploaded. These are described in detail below
We may sometimes ask for additional documents to be considered, but the main items for both an academic decision for the award of the scholarships are listed on your application web page for your chosen MA. These items should coincide with both the formal application form (where the personal statement is also included):For new applicants: On the application form you should state in the section headed “Intended Method of Funding” that you are applying for the Santander bursary. For students already accepted onto one of the programmes: Please write to Tim Collins at the following address stating that you would like to be considered for the award:
[email protected]



Entry Requirements

A 1st or upper 2nd class UK honours degree, or equivalent is usually required. The MA/Diploma in Forensic Linguistics is suitable for graduates in degrees related to language, linguistics or law-related disciplines. No legal background will be assumed.

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