Undergraduate 

English Language & Linguistics MA

English Language students

English Language & Linguistics combines the study of the structure and meaning of the English language, past and present, to see what all this tells us about our culture, our society and ourselves.

Over 50 years, we created the world-leading Historical Thesaurus of English. You will also have access to dedicated laboratories for analysing spoken and written language.

  • September start
  • Session dates
  • English Language & Linguistics MA (Hons): Q300 4 year degree

What our students say

“I had not originally planned to take English Language & Linguistics but the course content and incredible enthusiasm of the lecturers converted me very quickly to take it to Honours. The course is so broad and with fascinating content that there is something for everybody to get excited about.”

“Being in the English Language & Linguistics department at Glasgow is massively exciting. The opportunity to discover and pursue your interests, taught by such an enthusiastic and inspiring group of academics, is beyond compare.”

Programme structure

You will learn about the structure, meaning and history of the English language – how our language both now and in the past influences our interactions with each other and with the world.

Year 1

In your first year we give you a taster of every part of language study: how language can be analysed systematically and scientifically, and how meaning is created through manipulating sounds, words and sentences. You will look at how different varieties of English and Scots, a particular speciality at Glasgow, can convey identity across Scotland and the world, and examine how English as a language developed from its earliest roots, through Chaucer and Shakespeare, to its current form.

Year 2

Here we explore the use and history of English in more depth. You will learn how we colour our speech with melody and rhythm; convey unspoken meaning in conversation; and transform thought into words in our minds. You will also trace the earliest forms of the language through texts, artefacts and the histories of the words and names themselves and discover what it all reveals about society, culture and the labels we assign to the world.

You will also study other subjects in Year 1 and 2: see flexible degrees.

Years 3 and 4

At Honours you choose from a variety of advanced courses, including sociolinguistics, discourse and conversation, phonetics, semantics, psycholinguistics, corpus linguistics, digital humanities and textual editing, the history of English, the language of laws, manuscript studies and book history, medieval literature, name studies, Old Icelandic, and the Scots language. All courses are taught by staff who are active researchers and leading scholars in their fields.

Course details

Year 1

In year 1, you will study two courses from English Language & Linguistics with courses from two other subjects. See flexible degrees

If you intend to study English Language as a Single Honours degree, you will need to study Level 1 Scottish Literature in Year 1 or Level 1 English Literature in Years 1 or 2.

Year 2

In Year Two, you will study two courses from English Language & Linguistics with courses from two other subjects. See flexible degrees.

If you intend to study English Language as a Single Honours degree, you will need to study Level 1 Scottish Literature in Year 1 or Level 1 English Literature in Years 1 or 2.

Years 3 and 4

If you progress to Honours (Years 3 and 4) you choose from a variety of advanced courses.

You will complete a dissertation on a topic of your choice in your final year of English Language & Linguistics.

You will take courses making up 120 credits each year in years 3 and 4 in Single Honours English Language & Linguistics.  For Joint Honours, you will take 60 credits in English Language & Linguistics each year, alongside 60 credits from your other degree subject.  See

Example courses

These are examples of courses you may study in Years 3 and 4. Courses may not run every academic year due to staff research interests, student interest, timetabling etc.


Programme alteration or discontinuation
The University of Glasgow endeavours to run all programmes as advertised. In exceptional circumstances, however, the University may withdraw or alter a programme. For more information, please see: Student contract.

Our international links

We have a well-established exchange programme with opportunities to study for a year at universities including Alcalá (Spain), Groningen (The Netherlands) and Helsinki (Finland). Some of our students spend their third year in North America or Australasia, though special arrangements apply in these cases. Recent placements have been in Toronto, Auckland and Montreal.

Entry requirements

for entry in 2022

Applicants to subject-combinations with Psychology must meet the Psychology degree programme entry requirements.

Summary of entry requirements for English Language & Linguistics

SQA Higher Entry Requirements (by end of S6)

  • AAAAA Higher or AAAA Higher+B Advanced Higher (BBBB S5 minimum for consideration)
  • Additional requirements: Higher English and a Higher Humanities subject.

SQA Higher Adjusted Entry Requirements* (by end of S5 or S6)

  • MD20 – BBBB (also other target groups*)
  • MD40 – AABB*
  • Additional requirements: Higher English and a Higher Humanities subject. Successful completion of Top-Up or one of our Summer Schools.

* See Access Glasgow for eligibility.

A-level Standard Entry Requirements

  • AAB – BBB
  • Additional requirements: one A-level Humanities subject.

IB Standard Entry Requirements

  • 36 (6,6,5 HL) – 32 (6,5,5 HL)
  • Additional requirements: HL English and HL Humanities subject.

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

English language requirements

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • 6.5 with no sub-test under 6.0.
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission to this programme:

TOEFL (ib, my best or athome)

  • 90 with minimum R 20, L 19, S 19, W 23.
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

PTE (Academic)

  • 60 with minimum 59 in all sub-tests.
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

Glasgow International College English Language (and other foundation providers)

  • 65%.
  • Tests are accepted for academic year following sitting.

University of Glasgow Pre-sessional courses

  • Tests are accepted for academic year following sitting.

Cambridge English Qualifications

  • Cambridge Advanced English (CAE): 176 overall, no subtest less than 169
  • Cambridge Proficiency in English (CPE): 176 overall, no subtest less than 169

School Qualifications

  • iGCSE English or ESOL 0522/0500, grade C
  • International Baccalaureate English A SL5 or HL5
  • International Baccalaureate English B SL6 or HL5
  • SQA National 5 English or ESOL, grade B
  • SQA Higher English or ESOL, grade C
  • Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education, English Language grade 4
  • West African Examination Council, Senior Secondary School Certificate, English grade C6

Alternatives to English Language qualification

  • Undergraduate degree from English speaking country (including Canada if taught in English)
  • Undergraduate 2+2 degree from English speaking country
  • Undergraduate 2+2 TNE degree taught in English in non-English speaking country
  • Masters degree from English speaking country
  • Masters degree (equivalent on NARIC to UK masters degree) taught in English in non-English speaking country.

For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use these tests to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level programmes. The University is also able to accept an IELTS test (Academic module) from any of the 1000 IELTS test centres from around the world and we do not require a specific UKVI IELTS test for degree level programmes. We therefore still accept any of the English tests listed for admission to this programme.

Pre-sessional courses

The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:

FAQs

What do I do if...

my language qualifications are below the requirements?

The University's School of Modern Languages and Cultures offers a range of Pre-sessional courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching.

my language qualifications are not listed here?

Please contact External Relations

If you require a Tier 4 student visa, your qualification must be one of the secure English language tests accepted by UK Border Agency:


Visa requirements and proof of English language level

It is a visa requirement to provide information on your level of English based on an internationally recognised and secure English language test. All test reports must be no more than 2 years old. A list of these can be found on the UK Border Agency website. If you have never taken one of these tests before, you can get an initial idea of your level by using the Common European Framework self-assessment grid which gives you a level for each skill (e.g. listening B1/writing B2 etc.) However, please note that this is not a secure English language test and it is not sufficient evidence of your level of English for visa requirements.

For further information about English language, please see School of Modern Languages and Cultures: English for Academic Study.


Career prospects

As a graduate in English Language & Linguistics you will be an expert in language, communication and the rigorous analysis of texts and events in the real world. You will have a broad range of career opportunities, drawing on your research skills and knowledge. Our graduates find jobs in traditional and new media, publishing, marketing, speech therapy and dictionary-making, and many of them teach English as a foreign language, often in Europe, Asia or South America.

Degrees and UCAS codes

When applying you will need to know the UCAS code for the subject or subject-combination that you wish to apply to:

MA (Hons)

English Language & Linguistics: Q300 (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Archaeology: V4Q3 (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Celtic Civilisation: QQM3 (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Celtic Studies: QQ3N (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Comparative Literature: QQF3 (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Computing Science: GQ4J (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Digital Media & Information Studies: GQ5J (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Economics: LQ1H (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/English Literature: Q304 (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/French: QR3D (5 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Gaelic: QQ53 (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/German: QR3G (5 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Greek: Q3Q7 (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/History: QV3D (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Italian: QR3J (5 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Latin: QQ3Q (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Mathematics: QG3D (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Music: QW3J (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Philosophy: QV3N (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Politics: LQ2J (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Portuguese: 4W7V (5 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Psychology: CQ8J (4 years)
KIS
Apply to CQ8J
Applicants must meet the Psychology requirements
English Language & Linguistics/Russian: QRHT (5 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Scottish History: QV3F (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Scottish Literature: QQ2J (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Social & Public Policy: QL3L (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Sociology: LQ63 (4 years)
English Language & Linguistics/Theatre Studies: WQ4J (4 years)
KIS
English Language & Linguistics/Theology & Religious Studies: QV36 (4 years)
KIS

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

Scholarships

The University is committed to supporting students and rewarding academic excellence. That's why we've invested more than £1m in additional scholarship funding in recent years.

College of Arts Deans' Award

The College of Arts is offering two scholarships worth £10,000 each towards tuition fees for academically excellent students wishing to study an Undergraduate programme within the College’s programme portfolio for 2022 entry.

The scholarships will be awarded to applicants from USA, Canada, Spain and India.  They are open to students applying to all undergraduate programmes within the College of Arts at the University of Glasgow.

EU Welcome Award

The University of Glasgow continues to be committed to ensuring a strong relationship with our existing and future EU students, and supporting EU talent to make their home at the University of Glasgow. 

We appreciate the challenging financial implications that have arisen as a result of Brexit, and are therefore delighted to offer the EU Welcome Award to new incoming EU students starting an undergraduate programme for Academic Session 2022-23. The scholarship is awarded as a tuition fee discount of £5,000 for every year of study and is subject to satisfactory progress for consecutive years of study. This discount cannot be combined with another University scholarship.

Undergraduate Excellence Scholarship

The University of Glasgow has a number of Undergraduate Excellence Scholarships available to new International and EU students for 2022 entry. The scholarship is awarded as a tuition fee discount of £7,000 per year of study and is subject to satisfactory progress for consecutive years of study. This scholarship cannot be combined with another University scholarship.

RUK Excellence Scholarship

The RUK Excellence Scholarship of £1,000 for each year of study will be awarded to first degree entrants who have attained AAA or better in one sitting at A Level (or equivalent) for 2022 entry.

RUK Access Bursary

The bursary supports talented students who might not be able to take a place at University for reasons of financial hardship. It is available to new entrant full-time, undergraduate students of the University of Glasgow who are fully registered for Session 2022/23, as being domiciled in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and paying annual tuition fees of £9,250 per annum.

James McCune Smith Undergraduate Scholarship

The University of Glasgow has up to 30 undergraduate scholarships available for students of African/African-Caribbean backgrounds. The scholarship supports students who could face financial difficulties taking up their place to study at the university. The value of the scholarship is £2,000, paid in instalments for year one of undergraduate study. The scholarship is open to new applicants to the university for 2022 entry. Current students who have previously been in receipt of the award may reapply, however, preference will be given to applicants entering their first year of study.

Beaconhouse Schools

The University of Glasgow offer a 15% discount on the first year of tuition fee to students from Beaconhouse Schools and who enrol on an undergraduate programme at the University of Glasgow. The discount does not apply to Veterinary Medicine, Medicine and Dentistry programmes.

Undergraduate Talent Scholarships

The University of Glasgow is awarding c.50 undergraduate Talent Scholarships to support students who could face financial difficulties in taking up their place to study at the University for 2022 entry. The value of each scholarship is typically £1,500 p.a. for each year of the degree programme, subject to satisfactory progress. Talent Scholarships are available to students entering any of the University's Colleges.

Dental School students are eligible for a Talent Scholarship in their first year of study only. They are eligible for the NHS Dental Student Support Grant in the following years.

 

Republic of Ireland (RoI) Access Bursary

Glasgow has a long and proud tradition of providing financial support to talented students who, for reasons of financial hardship, might not be able to take a place at university. Our RoI Access Bursary is part of our commitment to continue to attract and support students from a diverse range of backgrounds. For 2022 entry, the RoI bursary will be up to £2,000 for your first year of study and £1,000 for continuing years.

Payments of the RoI Access Bursary will be detailed in your Award Letter.

  • The RoI Access Bursary will be awarded as a cash payment.
  • The RoI Access Bursary will be paid in 10 instalments from October until July; this award is based on household income
  • The RoI Access Bursary will only be awarded in years where tuition fees of £9,250 apply (i.e. Normally Years 1,2 and 3. Bursary is not paid in Year 4 where no tuition fees are due).

Republic of Ireland (RoI) Excellence Scholarship

The RoI Excellence Scholarship of £1,000 for each year of study will be awarded to first degree entrants who have attained at Irish Higher grades A1, A1, A1, A1 from the Irish Leaving Certificate for 2022 entry. Dentistry, Medicine and Veterinary Medicine applicants are not eligible for this award.

Payments

  • The RoI Excellence Scholarship will be processed as a cash payment.
  • The RoI Excellence Scholarship will be paid in 2 instalments.
  • The first payment will be in October and the second payment will be in February.

These payments will be credited to the UK bank account held on your MyCampus profile; therefore, it is vital that this is up to date at the start of the session. By submitting your bank details on the MyCampus system, you are confirming that you agree with the terms and conditions of the award.

Beatrix Whistler and James McNeill Whistler Scholarship

The Beatrix Whistler and James McNeill Whistler Scholarships originate with an important collection of works by Whistler gifted by Miss Rosalind Birnie Philip to the University in 1935. Since then, and thanks to further gifts and acquisitions, the Hunterian has come to hold one of the two leading collections of Whistler’s work in the world and History of Art (SCCA) has become an international centre of expertise for the study of Whistler and his 19th century world.  

At her death in 1958, Miss Birnie Philip, Whistler’s heir and executrix, bequeathed the remainder of her art collection to the University, together with part of her residual estate for the purpose of establishing a scholarship scheme for students engaged in any branch of learning within the College of Arts. In 2019, the Whistler scholarships scheme was revised in acknowledgement of the continuing links between Miss Birnie Philip’s 1958 bequest of artworks and her wish to support student learning at the University. 

The Whistler Scholarships are open to students in all disciplines of the College of Arts. The award committee is willing to consider both individual applications AND joint applications (from up to THREE students). Innovative interdisciplinary work is particularly encouraged. However, students may only involve themselves in the submission of ONE application (individual OR joint).

The Whistler Scholarships cover travel and subsistence ONLY. However, in the case of Whistler-related proposals submitted under Scheme 1 additional funds may be made available at the discretion of the Scholarship Committee to cover research or other relevant expenses.

Sanctuary Scholarships

The University of Glasgow is offering up to 20 Sanctuary Scholarships for applicants to the University who are in the UK on humanitarian grounds and are facing challenges in progressing onto Higher Education. The scholarship is open to prospective undergraduate and postgraduate taught students at the University of Glasgow applying for entry in September 2022/23.

The scholarship will meet the cost of tuition fees for the duration of your programme, for those applicants who are unable to cover full tuition fees through access to public funds by applying to SAAS or Student Finance. The Sanctuary Scholarship also provides a £5,000 per year stipend, to assist with study costs. In addition, if the eligibility criteria for university accommodation is met, this will also be provided for the duration of your degree, if required. For more information on the accommodation criteria, please see the Accommodation Services section on the website.

The Clan Gregor Society Prize

The Clan Gregor Society is offering an award to new entrants to the University of Glasgow who descend from Clan Gregor. Prospective students will be asked to submit an application highlighting areas of consideration such as academic excellence and financial need. The award is open to both Undergraduate and Postgraduate applicants for 2022 entry.

Flywire Charitable Foundation Academic Scholarships

The Flywire Charitable Foundation is offering 8 scholarships to students for the coming academic year. The scholarships are across the following themes: global health, global citizenship, social justice and environmental sustainability.

Please see Flywire Charitable Foundation Scholarships for more details.

The scholarships above are specific to this programme. For more funding opportunities search the scholarships database

How to apply

Full-time students must apply through the Universities & Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). 

SQA applicants who are eligible for our Widening Participation programmes are encouraged to participate in one or more of these programmes, including Summer School, to support your application and the transition to higher education.

International students to Arts, Engineering, Law, Nursing, Science, and Social Sciences can also apply using The Common Application: however, if applying to more than one UK university, we recommend using UCAS. Applications to Dentistry, Education, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine must be made through UCAS.

Application deadlines

  • 15 October: if including Dentistry, Medicine, Veterinary Medicine or also applying to Oxford or Cambridge
  • 26 January: all other UK/EU applicants (unless otherwise stated on the UCAS website).
  • 30 June: international (non-EU) students

We do not usually accept any applications after these deadlines.

It's your responsibility to ensure the accuracy of your application before submission. Requests to correct application content, change degree programme or change college of entry, will not be accepted after these deadlines. This policy is in place to ensure fairness and consistency to all applicants, and no exceptions will be made.

How to apply for Advanced Entry

Apply for year 2 (Y2) on your UCAS application. If the specific subject is unavailable for Advanced Entry or your application for year 2 entry is unsuccessful, you will be automatically considered for year 1 entry. You do not have to submit a separate UCAS application.

Apply via UCAS

More information about this programme

UK top 15

Times & Sunday Times Good University Guide [English]

Times Good university guide

Helen: Entrepreneur

Helen used the skills she gained in writing, marketing and design through her English Literature/English Language degree to launch her own distillery company from her family farm in Pitlochry.

Times Good university guide
UK top 15

Times & Sunday Times Good University Guide [English]