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Phonetics and Phonology Integrated PhD

Our iPhD is for students who wish to develop an advanced theoretical and experimental grounding in phonetics and phonology.

You are currently viewing course information for entry year:

Start date(s):

  • September 2024
PG virtual open day. Wednesday 15 May, 13:00-18:00 (BST). Book your spot


The focus of this iPhD is the application of phonetics and phonology in:

  • first and second language acquisition
  • sociolinguistics
  • speech science
  • language patterning

The Phonetics and Phonology integrated PhD has a large taught and assessed component as well as a supervised research element. The foundation is a common core of modules dealing with essential theoretical issues and research methods. You are also offered specialised modules which act as the basis for your thesis.

You'll have an individual course of study based on your needs and the sponsor's requirements.

One of the strengths of the course is that it brings together the teaching and research expertise of staff belonging to the Phonetics and Phonology Research Group. This group is composed of students and staff working in phonetics and phonology across three of our academic schools:

This widens the pool of modules that are available. It enables you to interact with staff and students from a wide variety of backgrounds and expertise. Our particular areas of strength are in:

  • phonetics and phonology in first/second language acquisition and bilingualism
  • sociophonetic perspectives on speech perception and production
  • role of voice quality in speech processing
  • laboratory phonology and links between phonetics and phonology
  • phonetic and phonological characteristics of languages and language description in segmental and suprasegmental aspects
  • prosody and timing in the world's languages
  • neurocognition of speech and language processing with focus on phonetics, phonology, and prosody

The cross-cutting theme within these areas that we are all interested in is the link between:

  • perception
  • production
  • learning

Our perception research looks at the role of speakers and listeners in shaping linguistic systems and sound change.

Work on production and learning covers our interest in investigating meaningful sound patterning. This includes:

  • how it's acquired
  • stored
  • produced within a social context

Our work also investigates categorical and graded aspects of speech and the role of language-specific factors in shaping these categories.


Important information

We've highlighted important information about your course. Please take note of any deadlines.

What you'll learn

In year one you'll take 6 core modules. You'll also be able to select one optional module from one of the following areas:

  • sociolinguistics
  • language development
  • second language acquisition


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

When you reach the research stage, you are encouraged to become a member of the British Association of Academic Phoneticians (BAAP). This is the professional organisation for phoneticians in Britain.

Its members are involved in research in:

  • phonetics
  • teaching phonetics in higher education
  • the application of phonetic knowledge in areas such as speech and language therapy, speech technology and forensic science

The Association holds a Colloquium every two years. This provides an opportunity for members and invited participants to:

  • meet
  • present their research
  • discuss issues of concern to the academic community

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (HaSS) researcher development programme 

Each faculty offers a researcher development programme for its postgraduate research students. We have designed your programme to help you:

  • perform better as a researcher
  • boost your career prospects
  • broaden your impact

Through workshops and activities, it will build your transferable skills and increase your confidence.

You’ll cover:

  • techniques for effective research
  • methods for better collaborative working
  • essential professional standards and requirements

Your researcher development programme is flexible. You can adapt it to meet your changing needs as you progress through your doctorate.

Find out more about the Researcher Education and Development programme

Your future

Graduate destinations

Recent graduates of phonetics and phonology at Newcastle University have worked on a variety of languages and dialects, including:

  • Arabic (a range of dialects)
  • Chinese
  • English
  • German
  • Japanese
  • Malaysian
  • Malayalam
  • Polish
  • Serbian
  • Thai

Our graduates go on to work in:

  • academic institutions across the world
  • public and private institutions specialising in health sciences, media and communication, speech technology and forensic science

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 Phonetics Lab forms part of Newcastle's linguistics laboratory that received recent funding from the UKRI World-Class Science Laboratories (c.80K for improvements and new purchases of equipment and software). This is one of the UK's largest groupings of speech and language specialists. Alongside standard acoustic analysis software and high-quality recording equipment, our facilities include:

  • ultrasound tongue imaging (UTI) (fixed and portable)
  • electropalatography (EPG)
  • nasometry and airflow measures
  • electroglottography (EGG) (fixed and portable)
  • eye-tracking
  • Electroencephalography (EEG)

This provides the means of undertaking a wide range of acoustic, articulatory and perceptual investigations.

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

Find funding available for your course

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

Using the application portal

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You can choose to start your application, save your details and come back to complete it later.

If you’re ready, you can select Apply Online and you’ll be taken directly to the application portal.

Alternatively you can find out more about applying on our applications and offers pages.

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

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

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

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Get in touch

Questions about this course?

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

Frances Cook
PGR Programme Secretary
The School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6569


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

Fill in our enquiry form

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