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Research in language and linguistic science

Our research is cross-disciplinary and collaborative, with a focus on exploring the development, use and acquisition of linguistic systems.

Language is unique to humans and central to virtually all human activity. Studying it provides a window on the mind, on people and on society.

We adopt a pluralistic approach to the language sciences and do not privilege any single theoretical framework or methodological approach.

The Research Excellence Framework 2021

  • We’re ranked 1st in the UK for the quality of our research - according to the Times Higher Education’s ranking of the latest REF results (2021). Also, 100% of our research impact was rated 4* - REF’s highest rating.

Learn more about the 2021 REF results

Research strengths

Understanding the complex nature of language, be it as a means of communication and thought, as a social tool, as an expression of identity, as a multimodal phenomenon, as a window into history and the mind, and as a formal system – is best achieved by the simultaneous pursuit of multiple approaches.


We have state-of-the-art facilities for research and for training:


We promote our research results and wider expertise through annual or cyclic events in a variety of educational channels: