Our MA in Phonetics and Phonology will give you the opportunity to consider the fine details of everyday speech, and the information that these convey. You can study the sounds and sound patterns of the languages of the world from cognitive and social angles, combining theory and data. You can explore why sounds of language change over time and why we have different accents, and investigate how we learn the phonologies of our first and second languages.
The Department of Language and Linguistics has the second highest proportion of world-leading linguistics research in the UK. (Research Excellence Framework 2014).
The Department is part of our Faculty of Arts and Humanities, ranked 34th in the 2019 Times Higher Education World University Rankings.
We offer modules on articulatory and impressionistic phonetics, bilingualism, learning mechanisms in phonological development, and prosody of English, among others.
The core modules provide good grounding in the prevalent theories and research methods, and the optional modules cover a comprehensive set of specific areas, so there is a great deal of freedom to specialise further during the course. The faculty and staff at York are enthusiastic and knowledgeable. They go out of their way to help students and make the programme a really enjoyable experience.Yinglun Sun, MA in Phonetics and Phonology
In the Autumn Term, you'll consolidate your background in phonetics and phonology by taking two 10-credit core modules and an elective module (also for 10 credits). The Spring Term allows you to focus on particular subfields within phonetics and phonology and develop your own specialism, and you'll choose two option modules (for 20 credits each). At the same time, you will develop statistical analysis skills through the Quantitative Methods module. You'll study the Research Training module across all three terms, and complete your dissertation over the summer vacation. You'll take 180 credits overall.
Your core modules will equip you with skills in the data analysis used to provide empirically based evaluation of theoretical claims and hypotheses in phonology. You'll also learn how speech acoustics relates to production and perception in articulatory terms, and will develop your research skills, in order apply them in your dissertation project.
and one option from among:
Two option modules (20 credits each) which may include the following:
Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
In Summer Term and over the vacation you'll prepare and complete your dissertation of between 12,500 and 15,000 words (80 credits), supervised by a member of staff. You'll submit your dissertation in September.
Topics have ranged from:
|Full-time (1 year)||£7,810||£17,370|
|Part-time (2 years)
Fees for subsequent years are subject to confirmation.
year 1 fee
year 1 fee
Students on a Tier 4 Visa are not currently permitted to study part-time at York.
For courses which are longer than one year, the tuition fees quoted are for the first year of study. Fees for subsequent years are subject to increase (no more than 2% each year).
UK/EU or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK/EU or international student.
Discover your funding options to help with tuition fees and living costs.
If you've successfully completed an undergraduate degree at York you could be eligible for a 10% Masters fee discount.
Find out more about funding specific to Language and Linguistic Science.
You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.
Studying phonetics allows me to appreciate the fine details of human speech: the rhythms, intonations, sudden stops and breathy starts. It trains your ear to identify sounds you’ve always heard, yet never really heard before. It equips you with the skills to transcribe these sounds and share them with others. Believe me: after taking phonetics, you'll never view conversation in the same way again.Daniel, MA Linguistics
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You’ll work with world‐leading academics who’ll challenge you to think independently and excel in all that you do. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace.
You'll be taught with a mixture of lectures, seminars, workshops and practical training. You'll have approximately three contact hours a week for each module. For some modules you’ll complete collaborative group work outside your classes. You’ll be set essential reading, and will complete weekly assigned exercises.
A Research Training module runs throughout the Autumn, Spring, and Summer Term teaching periods, to support your development in academic skills as a linguist.
All modules, including the Research Training module, offer developmental assessments that do not contribute to your final mark. These provide a chance to practice your skills and gain useful feedback on your progress and understanding, before you take the final assessments. A member of the teaching staff will act as your supervisor throughout the degree, to help guide your studies and monitor progress.
We encourage you to be an active part of the research community here at York. You'll have the opportunity to interact with researchers, and to attend departmental events where you can broaden your view of phonetics, phonology and linguistics in general.
All of our modules have Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) websites where all crucial materials—reading lists, handouts, discussion boards—are accessible.
We have our own departmental e-Lab for the teaching and study time of our students. Here you will have access to a variety of resources, including specialist linguistics software, corpora of different varieties, and online language-learning materials.
You will be based in the Department of Language and Linguistic Science on Campus West. Most of your contact hours will be in or close to Vanbrugh College, with some additional teaching in other locations on Campus West.
Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
A range of assessments formats are used. You’ll submit exercises or short essays, or take examinations, for your Autumn Term modules. You'll produce 5,000 word essays for your Spring Term option modules. For the Research Training module you'll take one examination, and write a methodological critique of a linguistics research paper. You will also complete a dissertation.
The support from the staff and lecturers who I had contact with has been excellent. I have always been welcome to talk about both academic and personal aspects. During the Masters degree, I constantly asked myself a question: and now? what's next? Staff in the department have given me excellent advice and encouraged me to trust myself.Eloi, MA Linguistics
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Effective communication, critical thinking and project management skills are central to most careers. The study of linguistics at York equips you with these skills and others, which translate readily into any work context.
Our graduates have an excellent record of pursuing fulfilling paths after graduation, often going directly into employment. Their work spans advertising, teaching English as a foreign language, IT, accountancy, broadcasting, clinical and forensic linguistics, retail management, and other careers.
Apart from your knowledge of linguistics, you will leave with the confidence and skills that come from successfully completing a demanding course and participating fully in university life.
You should have, or be about to complete, a 2:1 undergraduate degree or equivalent qualification, which should include formal training in phonetics and phonology.
If you are unsure about your eligibility, or want an informal chat about whether this course would be suitable for you, please contact us.
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
For more information see our postgraduate English language requirements.
You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.
The length of course you need to take depends on your current IELTS scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.
After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.
You can apply and send all your documentation electronically through our online system. You don’t need to complete your application all at once: you can start it, save it and finish it later.
Get in touch if you have any questions
If you are new to the field or have only minimal prior background:
If you have considerable prior background we offer other specialist MA programmes:
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