3 years full-time (plus optional placement year)
AAB (full entry requirements)
September 2021 (term dates)
£9,250 per year
£18,350 per year
QS World Rankings by Subject 2021
Language is a window on the mind. It is how we express ourselves, and is the essence of what makes us human.
In studying linguistics you will be learning the science behind how we communicate. You’ll engage with the study of language on a conceptual level as well as the detailed level of raw linguistic data. You'll study syntax, semantics, phonetics, phonology and sociolinguistics, taught by world-leading academics whose expertise covers a range of areas of linguistics.
The combination of theory and practice will stimulate your critical thinking skills, foster your originality, and enable you to become a uniquely skilled analytical thinker and problem-solver. Your knowledge and understanding of how a language works, and how we communicate, will give you a solid foundation for many careers. This flexible course gives you opportunities to customise your studies from the second year onwards.
Our Department has the second highest proportion of world-leading linguistics research in the UK. (Research Excellence Framework 2014). The strength and diversity of our research is reflected in our teaching.
We are in the world top 100 for Linguistics (QS World Rankings by Subject 2021).
The beauty of linguistics is that it is so varied. There are so many aspects to the course which means it’s very easy to find something that interests you. The structure of the course allows you to choose what path you would like to go down and explore in more detail.Laura, BA Linguistics
Read more on Laura's blog
You’ll focus primarily on spoken language data, using tools from the core areas of linguistics: syntax, phonetics and phonology, semantics, and sociolinguistics. You'll learn to notice and describe fine-grained details - the kind of detail that the human brain subconsciously pays attention to - while at the same time developing an eye for the underlying pattern in a set of data.
The course builds from developing core skills in analysis and linguistic investigation, to applying these skills in advanced-level modules by the final year. There are opportunities to customise your programme of study from the second year onwards according to your own interests.
You'll be able to take elective modules from other departments over the course of your degree. All electives are offered subject to departmental approval and timetable availability. You may also take certain language courses offered by Languages for All (LFA) as electives, but there may be restrictions on which LFA levels can be taken at each stage of your degree. Ask us for further details.
There are opportunities for you to spend time abroad during your course:
In the first year, alongside the core linguistics modules, you can choose to study a new language, develop your skills in a language you already know, add one or two English Language modules, or choose electives in other departments.
You'll take six modules.
You'll choose two options from English Language modules or electives.
Example English Language modules
In addition to the above you will also need to complete our online Academic Integrity module.
This module covers some of the essential skills and knowledge which will help you to study independently and produce work of a high academic standard which is vital for success at York.
This module will:
In the second year, you'll apply your core linguistic knowledge to new types of linguistic data, such as child language or regional varieties of English. At the same time, you will gain deeper theoretical knowledge in the core areas that you choose to pursue.
You'll take six modules.
You'll choose five option modules, including at least one of the following two:
Example Linguistics modules
In your final year, you can choose freely from a wide range of modules. You will have the opportunity to become proficient in all aspects of managing small-scale linguistic projects, from identifying the research questions, to communicating the findings. You can choose to specialise, follow your own interests and carry out original research
You'll take six modules of your choice, with up to two electives.
Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Every course at York has been designed to provide clear and ambitious learning outcomes. These learning outcomes give you an understanding of what you will be able to do at the end of the course. We develop each course by designing modules that grow your abilities towards the learning outcomes and help you to explain what you can offer to employers. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
The fees and funding figures below are for 2021/22 entry. If you take a year abroad or year in industry you'll pay a reduced rate of fees for that year
|UK (home)||International and EU|
UK (home) or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status
For more information about tuition fees, any reduced fees for study abroad and work placement years, scholarships, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs see undergraduate fees and funding.
Set texts are available from the Library or online, but you may wish to buy your own copy for some modules. These typically cost between £10 and £30.
We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2021/22 throughout the year.
Find out more about funding specific to .
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.
“Students from all backgrounds achieve consistently outstanding outcomes”
The TEF Panel, Office for Students, June 2018
Our Gold Teaching Excellence Framework award demonstrates our commitment to the delivery of consistently outstanding teaching and learning for our students.
You’ll study and learn with academics who are active researchers, experts in their field and have a passion for their subjects. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
You'll be taught in different ways, from lectures to small-group discussions and individual work. Our different teaching formats equip you to be an effective independent learner. In your first year we offer you extra study support in several ways. Our Peer Assisted Learning programme gives you the opportunity to work with other students. You can also add an optional contact hour with one of our staff each week and receive additional support with easing into university life.
You'll focus on learning the tools of linguistic study. You'll attend large lectures (some with over 100 students) accompanied by set work to complete. You'll have regular smaller group sessions (15-20 students) which gives you the opportunity to discuss your progress, resolve problems and expand upon the set exercises.
You'll engage with group presentations or practical sessions in addition to lectures. You'll also prepare in advance for seminar discussions which may include library-based research.
You'll work with challenging and stimulating primary research papers for some modules. For other modules involving phonetic or grammatical analysis you'll work in the lab. You'll take a primary role in researching and presenting content. You can choose to write a dissertation, and you'll be supervised by a member of staff for this.
Throughout the course you'll typically spend 12 hours per teaching week in the classroom. You should expect to devote at least 30 additional hours a week to independent study, completing set exercises, reading, researching projects, coursework and assessment preparation. You'll have a reading week for independent study twice a year. We'll give you guidance on your goals for the reading week.
In your first year, you can expect:
|Lectures||4-6 hours per week|
|Seminars||6-8 hours per week|
|Workshops||5-6 hours per week|
These figures are based on an average student in an average week. Your contact hours will vary throughout the year due to your module choices, non-compulsory classes, exam periods and changes to scheduled activities.
Outside your timetabled hours, you'll study independently. This may include preparation for classes, follow-up work, wider reading, practise completion of assessment tasks, or revision.
In the UK, full-time students are expected to spend 1,200 hours a year learning. That's about 40 hours of classes and independent study each week during term time. Everyone learns at a different rate, so the number of hours you spend on independent study will be different to other students on your course.
All of our modules have Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) websites where all crucial materials—reading lists, handouts, discussion boards—are always accessible. Most first year modules provide additional self-study practice exercises on the VLE.
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 and online language-learning materials. Several undergraduate modules are taught in this laboratory and you'll receive training in using these resources.
You will be based in the Department of Language and Linguistic Science on Campus West. Your contact hours will be 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.
You'll complete coursework and exams, ranging from short sets of exercises and extended essays, to group projects where you research and present a topic in a team. Some of our advanced phonetics or phonology modules require spoken (oral) and/or listening (aural) assessments. In most modules, the final mark is made up of the marks for more than one type of assessment.
You'll also take formative assessments, which do not count towards your final mark, but offer you feedback on your progress and development. Types of feedback can include in-class discussion of common problems on a particular assignment, model answers, one-on-one discussion of research projects, and online responses on the module discussion board, as well as written feedback on work that you have submitted.
We can make appropriate adjustments to assessment procedures for students with disabilities. See the University's disability support pages for further details.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
The figures above are based on data from 2016/17.
Effective communication, critical thinking and project management skills are central to most careers. The study of language and 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. Learn more about graduate career destinations.
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.
There are specialist careers that lead directly from your degree, after additional postgraduate training, including: clinical linguistics (speech and language therapy), forensic linguistics (forensic speech science), teaching (primary and secondary), teaching English as a foreign language, academic research and higher/further education.
|Access to Higher Education Diploma||Obtain Access to HE Diploma with 36 credits at Distinction and 9 credits at Merit or higher|
|BTEC National Extended Diploma||DDD|
|Cambridge Pre-U||D3, D3, M2|
|European Baccalaureate||80% overall average|
|International Baccalaureate||35 points|
|Other international qualifications||Equivalent qualifications from your country|
Meeting the following additional criteria may qualify you for an alternative offer.
|Widening participation||If you successfully complete one of the following programmes, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to three A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer: Next Step York, Realising Opportunities. More about widening participation.|
|Contextual offers||If you have experience of local authority care or live in an area with low progression to university, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to two A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about contextual offers.|
|EPQ||If you achieve C or higher at EPQ, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.|
|Core Maths||If you achieve B or higher in Core Maths, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.|
|MOOCs||If you successfully complete our online course Accents, attitudes and identity, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about MOOCs.|
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
|IELTS||6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component|
|PTE Academic||61, with a minimum of 55 in each component|
|GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language)||Grade C|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||176, with a minimum of 169 in each component|
|TOEFL||87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in each component|
|Trinity ISE III||Merit in all components|
|Duolingo||110 overall, with a minimum of 100 in each component|
|LanguageCert International ESOL SELT||B2 Communicator High Pass with a minimum score of 33/50 in each component|
For more information see our undergraduate 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 English language test 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.
Get in touch if you have any questions
If you want to study English literature alongside linguistics, see our English and Linguistics course.
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