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Sociolinguistics (Research) MA, PGDip

This Sociolinguistics Master's course explores the 20th-century history of linguistics and the philosophy of linguistics.

You are currently viewing course information for entry year:

Start date(s):

  • September 2024

Important application information

This course is only available to ESRC applicants applying for a 1+3 (Master's plus PhD) funded route.

We are unable to accept applications from independent candidates.


Join us for this Sociolinguistics Master's course. You'll examine:

  • tensions between different conceptions of language
  • the issues surrounding research methodology in linguistics
  • sociolinguistics
  • the sociology of language

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) recognises this course. It is designed to prepare you for doctoral study. The course combines a mixture of generic research training modules with more specialised modules covering research training and specific linguistic knowledge.

Although your focus will be on your specialist study, our aim is for you to develop a broad range of research and project management skills that will support you in your career ahead. We have nurtured a multi-cultural, multi-disciplinary and supportive environment where staff and students from across the world can come together and share their research experiences.

We offer supervision in the following areas:

Important information

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Qualifications explained

Find out about the different qualification options for this course.

What you'll learn

You'll gain a working knowledge of the methodology and skills in quantitative and qualitative research in language and linguistic studies.

As part of this Sociolinguistics MA, you'll carry out a literature review and independent fieldwork. You'll undertake sociolinguistic analysis using a variety of mathematical and computational tools.


You will study modules on this course. A module is a unit of a course with its own approved aims and outcomes and assessment methods.

How you'll learn

Your development

Research skills

You have a unique opportunity to acquire a wide range of methodologies and exposure to diverse theoretical perspectives to enrich your own research. We have a wide range of research supervisors you can work with.

We offer subject-specific research training, including specialised practical workshops on statistical packages and software used in corpus linguistic methodologies. This specific training complements the research training programme you will be part of as a postgraduate research student.

Student work-in-progress meetings

Our 'student work in progress' meetings give you the opportunity to present your work to a student audience. You'll get instant feedback and discussions around your research.

Special interests group

Our special interests groups also facilitate researchers with common interests to share ideas, develop new skills and gain feedback on their work. The groups meet regularly and include topics like:

  • language variation and change
  • theoretical phonology
  • corpus linguistics
  • syntax
  • language and cognition

Guest lectures

Internationally renowned linguistic researchers have previously given guest lectures, recent speakers include:

  • Professor Alex D’Arcy, University of Victoria
  • Professor Sali Tagliamonte, University of Toronto
  • Professor Jenny Culbertson, University of Edinburgh

Your future

Our Careers Service

Our award-winning Careers Service is one of the largest and best in the country, and we have strong links with employers. We provide an extensive range of opportunities to all students through our ncl+ initiative.

Visit our Careers Service website

Quality and ranking

All professional accreditations are reviewed regularly by their professional body


The School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics is a lively and diverse community. We have over 700 undergraduates and 200 postgraduates.

We are based in the Percy Building. Our purpose-built postgraduate suite has dedicated computer clusters, meeting rooms, a kitchen and a lounge.

Linguistics researchers also have access to the LingLab. This space provides access to linguistics and experimental software, such as:

  • ELAN and CLAN
  • Praat
  • SONA
  • LabVanced
  • Gorilla
  • ShinyApps

There is also a range of specialised equipment available for loan or use, including professional-quality recording equipment:

  • a portable eye tracker
  • a portable ultrasound machine
  • a portable electroglottograph
  • ultrasound tongue imaging
  • multiple sound booths
  • iPads

Finally, the lab also has access to several linguistic corpora, including:

  • Transana
  • ICE-GB Corpus of English
  • ICE-GB Great Britain Sound Files
  • BYU Corpora

We have two postgraduate research student study rooms. The larger room was recently upgraded with more workstations and a soft seating area. We have a Resource Centre and two on-site clinics:

The School also houses the Language Resource Centre. It has an extensive range of language learning facilities and resources, including:

  • access to 24 satellite television channels from around the world
  • listen and record facilities for speaking practice
  • interactive language learning software
  • an international film collection of over 800 titles

The award-winning Philip Robinson Library has an extensive audio-visual collection.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees for 2024 entry (per year)

What you're paying for

Tuition fees include the costs of:

  • matriculation
  • registration
  • tuition (or supervision)
  • library access
  • examination
  • re-examination
  • graduation

Find out more about:

Search for funding

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Entry requirements

The entrance requirements below apply to 2024 entry.

Qualifications from outside the UK

English Language requirements

Admissions policy

This policy applies to all undergraduate and postgraduate admissions at Newcastle University. It is intended to provide information about our admissions policies and procedures to applicants and potential applicants, to their advisors and family members, and to staff of the University.

Download our admissions policy (PDF: 201KB)
Other policies related to admissions

Credit transfer and Recognition of Prior Learning

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) can allow you to convert existing relevant university-level knowledge, skills and experience into credits towards a qualification. Find out more about the RPL policy which may apply to this course

How to apply

Open days and events

You'll have a number of opportunities to meet us throughout the year including:

  • campus tours
  • on-campus open days
  • virtual open days
  • webinars

Find out about how you can visit Newcastle in person and virtually

Overseas events

We regularly travel overseas to meet with students interested in studying at Newcastle University.

Visit our events calendar for the latest events

Get in touch

Questions about this course?

If you have specific questions about this course you can contact:

Scott Burdon
Learning and Teaching Assistant
School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 3177


For more general enquiries you could also complete our online enquiry form.

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