Postgraduate study

Phonetics MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

Programme website: Phonetics

This programme will give a comprehensive grounding in the theory and practice of phonetics. Students will learn the core phonetic topics of speech production, speech acoustics, and speech perception, and will learn how phonetics relates to many other language-related disciplines.

The programme has a strong practical emphasis. It is designed primarily for graduates wishing to continue studying phonetics at PhD level, and for those wishing to use phonetics as a tool for investigation in related fields, e.g. historical linguistics, phonology, developmental linguistics, psychology, speech technology, etc.

The taught MSc in Phonetics will provide students with an intensive grounding in phonetics and related disciplines, its methodologies, research questions, and techniques of research.

All students will be required to take the core courses. Those students who do not have a strong background in phonetics and phonology may also be required to take an introductory course in Phonology & Phonetics. Students will take options from a wide range of courses offered in Linguistics & English Language and related subject areas, and will write a dissertation project.

Courses will include lectures, tutorials, and lab practicals.

Assessment is by coursework, project, and/or exams and a dissertation project.

At the dissertation stage, students are assigned a supervisor with whom they meet to plan their reading and to discuss their work.

The taught MSc in Phonetics will give students all of the intellectual and practical skills to engage in phonetics research, either for its own sake, or as part of research in another sub-area of linguistics, speech technology, or speech pathology.

Students graduating from our programme will understand basic anatomy and physiology of speaking and hearing, phonetic typology, current theories of phonetics and its relationship to phonology and other parts of grammar, and how to test these theories using empirical data.

We offer a strong focus on practical skills: students will learn how to elicit and collect phonetic data, the mechanisms involved in recording sound, how to measure and analyse acoustic and articulatory components of speech, how to create and analyse perceptual experiments, as well as core elements of scripting and statistical analysis.

This course is primarily as a conversion course for students looking to do serious postgraduate work in phonetics, speech pathology, speech processing, forensic linguistics or related fields.

Students will also receive training in practical skills, e.g. statistics and computational techniques, which could be relevant for a variety of different fields.

A UK 2:1 honours degree or its international equivalent, in linguistics, psychology, computer science or a related field.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)

  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)

  • PTE Academic: total 67 (at least 61 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)

  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)

  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, PTE Academic or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.*

(*Revised 8/11/2018 to provide more accurate information on English language qualifications expiry dates. Revised 22/03/2019 to provide more accurate/comprehensive information.)

Find out more about our language requirements:

Read our general information on tuition fees and studying costs:

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments. The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on your programme, the duration of your studies, and your residency status. (Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.)

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • PPLS Postgraduate Office
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 5002
  • Contact: pplspg@ed.ac.uk
  • PPLS Postgraduate Office
  • Dugald Stewart Building
  • 3 Charles Street
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AD

Applications are held for processing over the following deadlines:

Round Application deadline Places awarded
1 14 December 2018 31 January 2019
2 15 April 2019 31 May 2019

MSc Phonetics operate a gathered field approach to applications. This means that all complete applications that satisfy our minimum entry requirements will be held until the nearest deadline and the admissions panel will meet to consider all applications received together after that date.

First deadline, 14 December 2018: in order to ensure full consideration of your application we ask that you submit your complete application including all supporting documentation by this date. The outcome of applications will be confirmed by the end of January. This is in order to meet funding deadlines.

Final deadline, 15 April 2018: the outcome of these applications will be confirmed by the end of May.

Applications will not be accepted after the final deadline.

Applications must be complete with all supporting documentation to be passed on consideration, this includes references. Please ensure that you inform referees of any deadline you wish to meet.

References

You will be asked to add contact details for your referees. We will email them with information on how to upload their reference directly to your online application. Alternatively, they can email their comments to:

Personal statement

In addition to the supporting documents requested on the application form, you should include a personal statement detailing the background of your interest and why you are attracted to the programme. We expect you to have a good understanding of the field you propose to study.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • PPLS Postgraduate Office
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 5002
  • Contact: pplspg@ed.ac.uk
  • PPLS Postgraduate Office
  • Dugald Stewart Building
  • 3 Charles Street
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AD