Research course

Linguistics (Modern Languages)

University of Nottingham · School of Modern Languages and Cultures

Entry requirements

A 2:1 (or international equivalent) – we would usually expect you to hold, or be working towards, a masters degree in a relevant subject

Months of entry


Course content

A PhD in linguistics (modern languages) allows you to research a linguistic topic related to one or more modern languages.

You can research any modern language but the school has particular expertise in French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, Serbian-Croatian, as well as expertise in Italian and Chinese.

The course is normally completed in three years full-time or six years part-time. You will follow a course of directed research under the supervision of your supervisors. This will lead to the completion of an 80,000-word thesis.

Research areas

Modern languages at Nottingham is a leading centre for research in French and Francophone studies, German studies, Russian and Slavonic studies, and Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies.

Our internationally-rated research spans eight interlinked, cross-disciplinary areas, with six collaborative research centres and groups and a peer-reviewed journal. Nottingham is also an important centre for the study of Contemporary China.

Our areas of expertise in linguistics include the following:

  • Sociolinguistics (including language standardisation, historical sociolinguistics)
  • History of linguistics (such as history of ideas about language, including the history of grammar-writing of particular languages)
  • Pragmatics and interactional linguistics (including conversation analysis in workplace and institutional settings, politeness studies, intercultural communication studies)
  • Discourse analysis
  • Translation and interpreting studies
  • Corpus linguistics (especially diachronic linguistics)
  • Applied linguistics, especially foreign/second language education and its history
  • Historical linguistics

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Postgraduate Enquiries