MA in Linguistics


Program Description

Programme Overview

  • This programme is designed for students with a background in linguistics, or a comibined background of langauge studies or communication, and linguistics.
  • Gain the theoretical insights for further research in the field, or for practical application in desigining language or communication coaching programmes.
  • Opportunity to study a broad range of topics, from how the brain processes langauage, to how language influences people and society.
  • This programme prepares you for a career as a researcher, teacher, editor or journalist, or consultant.

Why study Linguistics at Radboud University?

As a student at Radboud, you will be surrounded by some of the best Linguists in the world. Radboud University's Linguistics programme was ranked #1 in the world in 2017 according to CWUR. Radboud is home to two of the best Linguistics research programmes: The Max Planck Institute and the Donder's Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour.

The Master's programme in Linguistics gives you immense freedom to choose your focus, and the courses that interest you. Radboud encourages you to take a multidisiciplinary approach to your education. This means you will be studying and doing research on the topics that you are passionte about, and preparing yourself for a future career in the field of linguistics.

What will you learn?

This Master's focuses on the intricacies of language, how people learn and use it, and about the different types of variation in everyday language use. Language studies at Radboud University have a strong empirical focus.

You will study real language in situations where it is actually being used and only on the basis of your observations, you will formulate theories to be tested against the data. In this way, you will discover the richness of language. Besides research, you will also be able to focus on language skills, improving your English skills as well as your skills in a second lanugage.

Career Prospects

Graduates from this programme can find work as:

  • Journalist, Copywriter or Editor
  • Communication consultant
  • Teacher or Educational developer
  • Translator
  • Researcher
  • Language specialists


  • General Linguistics
    This specialisation offers a wide range of advanced topics in fields as diverse as psycholinguistics, sociolinguistics, (second) language learning, language description, language testing and linguistic diversity.
  • Language and Communication Coaching
    This specialisation combines a solid theoretical basis in Language for Specific Purposes, Second Language Acquisition and Language Testing. It offers you challenging opportunities to design language courses and practise your coaching skills.

Admission requirements

As an international student, your prior education must meet certain requirements.

Master's specialisation in General Linguistics
A completed Bachelor's degree from a Research University in Linguistics or Languages: In order to be admitted to this Master's you’ll need a completed Bachelor’s degree from a Research University in Linguistics. Students with a Bachelor’s degree in a specific language such as German or Dutch, or with a Bachelor’s degree in Communication and Information Studies can also apply, provided they have successfully completed at least 30 EC worth of real linguistics courses (language proficiency courses, for instance, do not count). The exam board will evaluate whether your linguistic background is sufficient for enrolment.

Master's specialisation in Language and Communication Coaching
A completed Bachelor's degree in a modern language, Linguistics or a related area: In order to gain admission to this Master's you’ll need a completed language or linguistics Bachelor’s degree from Radboud University. Students with a Bachelor’s degree in Languages or Communication and Information Studies from another research university need to have at least 60 EC worth of courses in the field of linguistics. Given the selective nature of the programme, the admission committee will in all cases evaluate whether your background and language proficiency are sufficient for enrolment.

Language Requirements

Fluency in English, both written and spoken. Non-native speakers of English without a Dutch Bachelor’s degree or VWO diploma need one of the following:

  • A TOEFL score of ≥ 600 (paper based) or ≥100 (internet based) and ≥ 22 subscore writing
  • An IELTS score of ≥7.0 (overall band) and ≥6.5 (writing)
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) or Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) with a mark of C or higher
  • A Bachelor’s degree in English Language and Culture from a research university.


For programmes starting in September

  • Non-EEA students: 1 April
  • EEA students: 1 May

For programmes starting in February (General Linguistics only)

  • Non-EEA students: 1 November
  • EEA students: 1 December

Quality label

This programme was recently rated ‘Best Programme’ in the Netherlands in the Keuzegids Masters 2016 (Guide to Master's programmes).

Last updated Oct 2019

About the School

At Radboud University in the Netherlands, you can obtain a high-quality and internationally accredited Master’s degree. Leading academics and excellent professors offer you what you need a a top-200 r ... Read More

At Radboud University in the Netherlands, you can obtain a high-quality and internationally accredited Master’s degree. Leading academics and excellent professors offer you what you need a a top-200 research university. We offer 11 English-taught Bachelor's programmes and 35 English-taught Master’s programmes with many specialisations which will give you the necessary skills and insights into research and practice within your own subject area. You will benefit from our personal teaching style, our top research institutes, and a green and friendly student city. Read less