BA Linguistics

Year of entry: 2020

Overview

Degree awarded
BA
Duration
3 years
Typical A-level offer

Grades ABB

Typical contextual A-level offer (what is this?)
Grades BBB.
Typical International Baccalaureate offer
34 points overall. 6,5,5 in Higher Level subjects

Full entry requirements

How to apply
Apply through UCAS

Course overview

  • Study the unique human faculty of language and investigate world languages.
  • Explore topics such as how languages arise, change and die, how children acquire their first language, and how adults learn a second or foreign language.
  • Develop transferable skills in quantitative methods.
  • Study at a top 10 UK university for Linguistics (Complete University Guide 2019).
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Discover Linguistics and English Language at The University of Manchester

Open days

Find out what it's like to study at Manchester by visiting us on one of our open days .

Fees

Tuition fees for home/EU students commencing their studies in September 2020 will be £9,250 per annum. Tuition fees for international students will be £19,000 per annum. For general information please see the undergraduate finance pages.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Contact details

School/Faculty
School of Arts, Languages and Cultures
Telephone
+44 (0)161 275 3211
Facsimile
+44 (0)161 275 3031
Email
Website
http://www.alc.manchester.ac.uk/
School/Faculty overview

See: About us

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Compare this course

Entry requirements

A-level

Grades ABB

AS-level

AS level results are not considered as part of the standard admissions process at The University of Manchester.

Unit grade information

The University of Manchester welcomes the provision of unit information where available.  Like all other information provided by applicants this may be taken into consideration when assessing your application.  Unit grades will not normally form part of an offer conditions.

GCSE

Applicants must demonstrate a broad general education including acceptable levels of Literacy and Numeracy, equivalent to at least Grade C or 4 in GCSE/iGCSE English Language and Mathematics. GCSE/iGCSE English Literature will not be accepted in lieu of GCSE/iGCSE English Language.

Please note that if you hold English as a second language iGCSE qualification, we may also require you to offer one of our acceptable equivalent English Language qualifications or achieve a higher grade in your iGCSE than the one stated above. Please contact the academic School for clarification.

International Baccalaureate

34 points overall. 6,5,5 in Higher Level subjects

Scottish requirements

Before reading this, please consult the A-level requirements for this programme and note any subject requirements.

For applicants who have studied under the new Scottish qualification system, the following will apply.

For programmes which have no particular pre-requisite subject , we require the following (in all cases, at least three Highers should be achieved by the end of S5):

  • A*AA at A-level :  Hrs of AAAAAB or AAAB plus Adv Hr Gr. A
  • AAA at A-level   :  Hrs of AAAABB or AABB plus Adv Hr Gr. A
  • AAB at A-level   :  Hrs of AAABBB or ABBB plus Adv Hr Gr. A
  • ABB at A-level   :  Hrs of AAABBB or ABBB plus Adv Hr at min. Gr. B

Where pre-requisite subjects are cited in our A-level requirements , we require the following (in all cases, at least three Highers should be achieved by the end of S5 AND Grade A should be achieved at Adv Hr in the required subject):

  • A*AA at A-level : Hrs of AAA plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs. AA, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs. AA
  • AAA at A-level   : Hrs of AAB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs. AA, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs. AA
  • AAB at A-level   : Hrs of ABB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs. AB, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs. AB
  • ABB at A-level   : Hrs of BBB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs. AB, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs. AB

For applicants who have studied under the old Scottish qualification system , Highers are welcomed but will not be accepted alone.  The minimum requirement is three Advanced Highers, the grades of which will be the same as our stated A-level grades for the course in question.  Any subjects (or other qualifications) required for A-level will also be required for the Advanced Highers, at the equivalent grade.

All applicants must have achieved National 5 English at Grade B.

Welsh Baccalaureate

The University welcomes and recognises the value of the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma/Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate and usually requires two A Levels or equivalent to be included within this.

The minimum grade required will normally be the same as the lowest grade listed in the A Level entry requirements.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

European Baccalaureate

The University of Manchester welcomes applicants with the European Baccalaureate. Acceptable on its own or in combination with other qualifications, applications from students studying for this qualification are welcome and all applicants will be considered on an individual basis.

We normally require: 77% to include a minimum of 8.0 in at least one essay-based subject.

AQA Baccalaureate

The University recognises the benefits of the AQA Baccalaureate and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills.

In making offers, the University will focus on the three A Levels taken within the AQA Baccalaureate. Students need to check the standard A Level requirements for their chosen course.

The units of broader study, enrichment activities and the Extended Project are considered to be valuable elements of the AQA Baccalaureate and we would therefore strongly encourage students to draw upon these experiences within their personal statement.

Other international entry requirements

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For these and general requirements including English language see Accepted entry qualifications from your country

Pearson BTEC qualifications

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma: we require Distinction / Distinction / Merit.

BTEC Level 3 National Diploma: we require Distinction / Distinction, plus an A-level at Grade B.

BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma: we require at least a Distinction, plus one A-level at min. Grade B in an essay-based subject (such as English or History) plus an EPQ or AS at Grade B.

BTEC National Extended Certificate: we require a Distinction, plus two A-levels at Grades BB (one of these A-levels should preferably be in a Humanities subject).

OCR Cambridge Technical qualifications

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Diploma (CTEC): We consider the Technical Extended Diploma for entry.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Extended Diploma with grades DDM.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Diploma (CTEC): Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Diploma with grades DM plus an A Level at grade A in an essay-based subject such as English or History.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Foundation Diploma (CTEC):  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Foundation Diploma with grades DD plus an A-level at min. Grade B in an essay-based subject (such as English or History) plus an EPQ or AS at Grade B.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Certificate (CTEC):  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Extended Certificate with grade D plus two A Levels at grades BB; at least one of these A-levels should be in an essay-based subject such as English or History.

Access to HE Diploma

We require a QAA-recognised Access to HE Diploma (a minimum of 60 credits overall with at least 45 at Level 3), with merit or distinction in a subject area relevant to the chosen course.

The specific course requirements are either GCSEs in both English and Mathematics (at Grade B/6 or higher), or achievement at Level 2 (GCSE-equivalent) by, for example, having six credits each in English and Maths. We also consider other factors such as additional educational achievements, life experience and skills on an individual basis.

We also require a minimum of 30 credits with a Distinction grade, plus 15 credits with a Merit grade, all in a Humanities-related subject. 15 of the Distinction credits should be in the pre-requisite subject required for A-levels.

Cambridge Pre-U

We consider applicants offering Pre-U Principal Subjects, or a mix of Pre-U and A Level subjects, provided a minimum of three distinct subjects overall is taken.

Candidates taking Pre-U principal subjects in conjunction with A levels are expected to achieve a combination of D3, M2, M2 in the Pre-U and ABB at A level in three distinct subjects.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the Academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

The University recognises the benefit of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills. We strongly encourage you to provide information about the EPQ in your personal statement and at interview. For this programme, as well as the regular conditions of offer, we may make students who are currently taking or completed the EPQ an alternative offer.  For this course it would be ABB at A-level plus the Extended Project at Grade A.

Core Maths

The University welcomes and recognises the value of Level 3 core mathematics qualifications (e.g. AQA Certificate in Mathematical Studies). 

Core Mathematics is not a compulsory element of post-16 study and as a result we will not normally include it in the conditions of any offer made to the student. However, if a student chooses to undertake a core mathematics qualification this may be taken into account when we consider their application, particularly for certain non-science courses with a distinct mathematical or statistical element.

We advise students to contact the academic School, who will clarify whether their specific portfolio of qualifications is acceptable for entry on to their chosen course.

Home-schooled applicants

If you are a student who has followed a non-standard educational route, e.g. you have been educated at home; your application will be considered against the standard entry criteria of the course for which you are applying. You will be required to demonstrate that you meet the specified academic entry requirements of the course. We will also require a reference from somebody who knows you well enough, in an official capacity, to write about you and your suitability for higher education. If you are a home schooled student and would like further information or advice please contact the academic School for your chosen course who will be able to help you. 

Non-standard educational routes

Mature students are some of our most well-equipped learners, bringing skills and attributes gained from work, family and other life experiences.  Students come from a whole array of backgrounds, study every kind of course, undertake full-time and part-time learning and are motivated by career intentions as well as personal interest.  There is no such thing as a typical mature student at Manchester.  The application process is the same as for other prospective undergraduates.  If you require further clarification about the acceptability of the qualifications you hold please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.  Further information for mature students can be found here ( http://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/mature-students/ )

English language

All applicants to the University (from the UK and Overseas) are required to show evidence of English Language proficiency.  The minimum English Language requirement for this course is either:

  • GCSE English Language grade C  /  4, or;
  • IELTS 7.0, or;
  • An acceptable equivalent qualification.

Please note that if you hold English as a second language iGCSE qualification, we may also require you to offer one of  our acceptable equivalent English Language qualifications  or achieve a higher grade in your iGCSE than the one stated above. Please contact the academic School for clarification.

The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) requires that every student from outside the UK and the EU must show evidence of a minimum level of English Language in order to be granted a UK visa (Tier 4 visa) to study at undergraduate or postgraduate level. This level is often referred to as the 'B2 level'.

Additionally, our individual Schools may ask for specific English Language proficiency levels that are necessary for their academic programmes. In most cases these requirements are likely to be higher than the B2 level. Further information about our English Language policy, including a list of some of the English Language qualifications we accept, can be found  here .

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Apply through UCAS

Advice to applicants

Mitigating Circumstances

Mitigating circumstances may be personal or family illness, other family circumstances, change of teachers during a course, problems with school facilities or an unusual curriculum followed by your school or college.  We recommend that information on mitigating circumstances that have affected or are likely to affect your academic performance should be included in the referee's report.  We cannot usually take into account information that is supplied after an adverse decision has been made on an application by the admitting School.  If you encounter mitigating circumstances after you have submitted your application, please inform the admissions staff in the School to which you applied as soon as possible.

Where mitigating circumstances have already been taken into account, for example by the relevant Exam Board, we will not be able to make further allowances.

How your application is considered

You will be invited to an interview prior to an offer being made for this course.

Interview requirements

You will be invited to an interview prior to an offer being made for this course.  This will be one element of a Visit Day specifically tailored to you, where you will sample aspects of your chosen programme, meet academics individually, hear from current students and find out about the latest Year Abroad options. We strongly encourage all offer-holders to come for a Visit Day.

Returning to education

We welcome applicants who are seeking a return to study.  We may be able to make alternative offers in light of your experience but it is important that you have studied languages to an advanced level (please see entry requirements for subject specific criteria).  We may interview you if you have not studied languages recently.

Deferrals

Applications for deferred entry are considered equally to other applications up to the point of confirmation.  Deferred entry is granted on the discretion of admissions staff, and is normally granted for one year only and two years at the maximum. Some English Language test results, such as IELTS or TOEFL are only valid for two years from the test date.

Policy for applicants who resit their qualifications

If you have re-sat individual modules to improve your grades, we will consider your application according to the standard selection process. If you are planning to re-sit the final Year 13 examinations, or have already done so, the University will consider your application, but we may require further information in order to make an informed judgment on your application.

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again. Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry.  In your new application you should demonstrate how your application has improved.  We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.If you are applying for a place for the same year of entry through UCAS Extra, you should provide additional evidence of your suitability for the course. If you are applying through clearing you are required to meet the clearing requirements. In both UCAS Extra and clearing the places will be subject to availability.

Course details

Course description

Our BA Linguistics course will enable you to delve into the science of language - an everyday phenomenon which impacts our lives on an individual and a global scale.

Through our course, you will explore the sounds and structure of languages across the globe, studying topics such as:

  • how languages arise, change and die;
  • how children acquire their first language;
  • how adults learn a second or foreign language;
  • differences between the speech of men and women;
  • how we communicate as individuals and within groups;
  • what happens when speakers of different languages come into contact.

With its diverse local communities, Manchester is an ideal site for carrying out research on linguistic variation and multilingualism. We conduct empirical and theoretical research and particularly a combination of the two.

You'll have access to one of the largest holdings of linguistics texts in the UK, and the opportunity to conduct research using English manuscripts held in our prestigious Special Collections. We have two laboratories, where you'll have the chance to use ultrasound imaging, laryngography and eye tracking technology.

You'll also be able to use quantitative methods in the study of large language corpora. This is a skill which you'll then be able to apply to other fields throughout your life.

Linguistics at Manchester is unrivalled in its breadth of subject areas and theoretical approaches. Our particular strengths include, among others, phonetics and phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics and pragmatics, historical linguistics, forensic linguistics, and quantitative corpus-based approaches.

You'll be encouraged to take an active role in funded teaching-enhancement projects. For example, some of our students have developed an online atlas of dialect variation in the UK.

Special features

Placement year option

Apply your subject-specific knowledge in a real-world context through a placement year in your third year of study, enabling you to enhance your employment prospects, clarify your career goals and build your external networks.

Study abroad

You may apply to spend one semester studying abroad during Year 2. Exchange partners are offered through the Erasmus Exchange scheme (in Sweden) and the Worldwide Exchange scheme (eg USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Singapore).

Study an additional subject

Flexible Honours may allow you to study an additional arts, languages or cultures subject.

Teaching and learning

You'll be taught through a mixture of:

  • formal lectures
  • tutorials
  • one-to-one supervision.

You'll spend approximately 12 hours each week in formal study sessions and further time in independent study.

In your independent study time, you may be reading, producing written work, revising for examinations or working as part of a team of students. You'll also have the opportunity to study a modern language.

Coursework and assessment

Our courses are assessed in various ways, for example, written examinations, oral presentations and different types of coursework.

Coursework may include library research, linguistic fieldwork and data collection, or web-based research.

In your final year, you'll have the option to write a 12,000-word dissertation. You'll undertake research on a topic of your own choice under the supervision of a member of staff in English Language and Linguistics.

Course content for year 1

Gain a solid grounding in linguistics, taking core course units including phonetics and phonology, sociolinguistics, semantics and (English) grammar, introductions to the principles of linguistics and to the relation between language, the mind and the brain.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Language, Mind and Brain LELA10201 20 Mandatory
English Word and Sentence Structure LELA10301 20 Mandatory
The Sounds of Language LELA10322 20 Mandatory
Study of Meaning LELA10332 20 Mandatory
History and Varieties of English LELA10342 20 Optional
Speech and Music Processing LELA10701 20 Optional

Course content for year 2

You'll begin to tailor your degree to suit your interests. While studying a small number of compulsory units in subjects like phonology, syntax, or semantics, you'll choose from a wide range of optional units tapping into academic expertise in a number of specialist fields - from typology to experimental phonetics.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
History and Varieties of English LELA10342 20 Optional
Phonology LELA20012 20 Optional
Theory of Grammar LELA20021 20 Optional
Typology LELA20031 20 Optional
Grammatical Semantics LELA20042 20 Optional
Societal Multilingualism LELA20101 20 Optional
Quantitative Methods in Language Sciences LELA20232 20 Optional
Semantics LELA20281 20 Optional
Pragmatics: Meaning, Context, and Interaction LELA20292 20 Optional
Cognitive Linguistics LELA20311 20 Optional
Experimental Phonetics LELA20341 20 Optional
Psycholinguistics LELA20962 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 12 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

Have complete freedom of choice among a wealth of different course options, spanning subjects as diverse as forensic linguistics, sociolinguistics, and formal semantics and syntax.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Phonology LELA20012 20 Optional
Theory of Grammar LELA20021 20 Optional
Typology LELA20031 20 Optional
Meaning in Grammar LELA20042 20 Optional
Societal Multilingualism LELA20101 20 Optional
Quantitative Methods in Language Sciences LELA20232 20 Optional
Semantics LELA20281 20 Optional
Pragmatics: Meaning, Context, and Interaction LELA20292 20 Optional
Cognitive Linguistics LELA20311 20 Optional
Experimental Phonetics LELA20341 20 Optional
The Changing Structure of English LELA20401 20 Optional
Variationist Sociolinguistics LELA20502 20 Optional
Psycholinguistics LELA20962 20 Optional
Dissertation LELA30000 40 Optional
Topics in the Study of Meaning in English LELA30032 20 Optional
Language Contact LELA30292 20 Optional
English Phonology Past and Present LELA30442 20 Optional
Meaning in Grammar LELA30642 20 Optional
Language Policy and Planning LELA30751 20 Optional
Historical Syntax LELA30962 20 Optional
Minimalist Syntax LELA30971 20 Optional
The Grammar of English Noun Phrases LELA31001 20 Optional
Language and Mediality LELA31072 20 Optional
First and Second Language Acquisition LELA31111 20 Optional
Forensic Linguistics in English LELA31631 20 Optional
Romance Linguistics LELA32001 20 Optional
Spanish Linguistics SPLA20772 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 27 course units for year 3

Facilities

Phonetics Lab
Undergraduate students can use the Phonetics Lab under supervision.

You will access resources to enhance your learning, including an extensive collection of linguistics texts and our psycholinguistics and phonetics laboratories, with facilities for:

  • signal analysis
  • speech synthesis
  • laryngography
  • electropalatography.

Find out more on the Facilities page.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk

Careers

Career opportunities

Radina Dobreva - BA Linguistics

"A degree from Manchester is sure to give me a good start for my career. My course has been invaluable in giving me the opportunity to figure out what I enjoy and what I want to do in the future.

"I came to university not knowing where that would take me, and I believe I will graduate with a plan and a renewed motivation for success."

Radina Dobreva / Year 3 student

Study Linguistics with us and you'll develop a range of analytical and problem-solving skills.

Often dealing with granular and complex data, your combination of humanities and scientific understanding will allow you to make connections across multiple fields of employment, including the media, marketing, speech and language therapy, lexicography, and teaching.

Our graduates have pursued successful careers at The Guardian, L'Oreal, Universal Music Group, and Vodafone. Others go on to pursue postgraduate study.

Our award-winning Careers Service provides a wealth of tools, advice, development opportunities, and industry links specific to your subject. You'll have access to dedicated support throughout your studies and up to two years after graduation.

Find out more on the Careers and employability page.