The English Language and Linguistics MA aims to provide you with a thorough understanding of the linguistic features of English from a wide range of perspectives: theoretical and applied, synchronic and diachronic. It will enable you to understand and evaluate critically a wide spectrum of ideas put forward in the study of the English language (particularly in connection with linguistic variation in terms of space, time, communicative context and linguistic contact) and will equip you with the intellectual perspectives and the scholarly skills that will prepare you to conduct independent research.
The English Language and Linguistics MA is suitable for students who have taken English language and/or linguistics modules at undergraduate level, and others who have taken allied disciplines such as psychology, philosophy or TESOL. It is of particular interest to those wishing to pursue further study and those teaching English who wish to gain a further qualification and investigate recent and current developments in the field.
If pursuing the degree full-time, you will study 180 credits in one academic year; if part-time, you will normally complete 180 credits in two academic years. You will study three core modules (including a 60-credit dissertation on a topic of English language and/or linguistics), as well as two modules from the list of options. The core modules English Language in Use and English Worldwide examine linguistic variation from a wide range of perspectives and many of the options complement this approach. You can explore TESOL issues as part of your options.
The teaching is mainly through weekly two- or three-hour sessions for each module, which include tutorials, seminars, practical sessions and workshops. There is also independent self-directed study, and you will be prepared for the Dissertation via structured sessions in research methodology. Assessment methods include submitted coursework such as essays, reviews and exercises; there are no formal examinations.
The Dissertation gives you the opportunity to conduct autonomous work with supervisory support on a topic you feel passionate about. At the beginning of the module you will have a series of practical seminars on the different issues involved in the process of writing a dissertation, such as finding a topic, the role of the supervisor, research methodology and the conventions of academic writing.
ENGLISH LANGUAGE IN USE: TIME, TEXTS AND CONTEXTS
In this module you will study English historical linguistics and stylistics, literary linguistics and cognitive poetics. Thus, you will gain a good knowledge of the ways in which the language has changed overtime and the stylistic effects of particular linguistic choices, as well as an in-depth understanding of the theoretical frameworks that can be used to describe the interaction between language and literature.
This module explores the interaction between the English language and other languages throughout the world, examining such varied but closely interrelated topics as world varieties of English, creole linguistics, multilingualism, intercultural pragmatics, and London English.
Course-specific entry requirements
Applicants are normally required to have a good first degree (2. 1 or above) or equivalent experience in a relevant subject (eg English language, linguistics or TESOL). Students whose first language is not English must have an IELTS certificate with an overall score of 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component, or be able to demonstrate an equivalent level of proficiency. Applicants will also be required to submit two academic references and they may be invited to an interview (either face to face or via Skype).
Applications from candidates without a first degree in a relevant subject are also welcomed. These applicants can submit professional or academic references.
Teaching and assessment
Assessment methods include submitted coursework such as essays, projects or reports. There are no timed written examinations.
The Department of English, Linguistics and Cultural Studies at the University of Westminster boasts a long established research culture in linguistics, with international reputation in the fields of creole linguistics, phonetics and syntax. More recently, the Department has also developed the English language and creative writing areas, appointing internationally renowned experts in these fields. Work on the English language focuses broadly on its history, its presence worldwide, multilingualism, stylistics, discourse analysis, semantics, translation and TESOL.
The English Language and Linguistics MA will provide you with sophisticated analytical skills and a widely applicable knowledge base, which will enable you to study at MPhil or PhD levels with a view to pursuing an academic career. The course is also particularly relevant to teaching English as a first or foreign language, and to a range of professions involving language and communication.
While studying the MA, you will also benefit from the careers workshops organised by the departmental employability coordinator.
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Last updated April 14, 2016