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COVID-19 update: This course will start online and continue on campus later. Read more

What will I learn?

The research master’s programme in Linguistics at Leiden University combines leading expertise with a flexible programme format.

Why study Linguistics (research) at Leiden University?

During this two-year research master’s programme you will be able to choose from the largest selection of languages offered in Europe and an exceptional range of linguistic approaches including historical, descriptive, formal, cognitive, sociolinguistic, experimental and corpus-based studies. You will be able to explore sub-fields including phonetics, phonology, morphology, semantics, syntax, discourse, or pragmatics.

Develop your research skills

An important aspect of this programme is developing your ability to conduct original and innovative research. You will have to opportunity to attend conferences, workshops and lecture series organised in Leiden, all of which will help you forge an outstanding start to your career. Small classes ensure that you have plenty of direct contact with your lecturers and a high level of guidance and support throughout your studies.

Programme structure

The two-year research master’s programme in Linguistics consists of core courses, short topics courses, electives and an academic thesis.

During your studies you will take:

  • Two core courses: one will introduce you to the cutting-edge research of leading scholars in linguistic sub-disciplines present at Leiden University, and the research methods employed in them, while the other provides overviews of the structure of five non-European languages by experts working on languages all over the world.
  • Two short topics courses taught by experienced researchers on recent developments in the field.
  • Courses from Summer and Winter Schools of the Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics (LOT).
  • Electives from any of the specialisations within the Master's in Linguistics programme with a worth of 50 EC (of the 120 EC). You may also replace an elective course with an internship in a research project or at an organisation.
  • A thesis based on original research.

Career prospects

Create a world of opportunities with a master's degree from Leiden University.

What our graduates do

Our graduates pursue careers at research agencies or in the research departments of companies or government organisations. Many enter PhD programmes at Leiden or another university, both in the Netherlands or abroad.

Outside of research, your knowledge of linguistics and advanced analytical and problem-solving skills can be applied within a range of vocations, from publishing and translating to teaching.

Examples of the roles of our graduates include:

  • PhD Candidate at universities in the Netherlands or abroad, such as the US, the UK, Sweden, France and Germany
  • Junior advisor at an institute for linguistic research and language teaching
  • Editor at a publishing house
  • Freelance translator
  • Consular officer at a ministry of foreign affairs
  • Technical writer
  • Content manager, editor, translator at NGO's
  • Translator within EU organisations
  • Author of digital educational materials
  • Research assistant at an university in Canada
  • Project manager at a translation agency
  • Teacher at a secondary school

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Humanities

Study options

Full Time (2 Years)

Tuition fees
€17,716.00 (14,47,386) per year
Application deadline

Expected October 2022

More details

Start date

Expected September 2022

Venue

Leiden University

Rapenburg 70,

LEIDEN,

Zuid-Holland,

2311, Netherlands

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Applicants need a BA or BSc degree (or equivalent) to be admitted to any of Leiden University’s master’s programmes. English-language proficiency: IELTS - 6.0; Toefl (internet based): 80 (component score: 20); Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE), or C1 Advanced (CAE): Cambridge component score of 169.

For international students

  • A copy of a valid passport or ID card
  • A copy of a Dutch residence permit (if applicable)
  • CV (résumé)
  • Language proficiency (if applicable)
  • Copies of diplomas and transcripts
  • Letter of motivation

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.

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