MA Psychology and Linguistics
UCAS code: CQ81
Duration: 4 years
School: Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences
College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences
Introducing MA Psychology and Linguistics
Psychologists are interested in the way biological and social factors influence how we behave, and how interests and abilities differ from person to person. They also study how we perceive, think, and learn about the world around us. They examine how we communicate verbally and non-verbally, and how and why our mental abilities change across our lives.
Psychology is an experimental and observational science, in which evidence from research studies is used to develop and evaluate theories. Our psychology courses have a strong emphasis on developing skills in research methods and statistical analysis, to support our research-led teaching.
Linguistics studies the uses of language in everyday life, the ways in which it varies across society and evolves over time, and how it is mastered by children.
This joint programme enables you to undertake a range of courses in these two fields. Psychology courses cover the scientific study of the mind, brain, and behaviour whilst linguistics courses examine how language works, exploring how sounds, words, sentences and conversations combine to express and create meaning.
It is possible to obtain accreditation by the British Psychological Society (BPS). Please contact us for further guidance.
Through lectures and tutorials, you will complete a general introduction to psychology, covering cognitive neuroscience, developmental psychology, the psychology of memory and perception, individual differences, language and thinking, and social psychology.
You will also discover basic concepts in research methods and statistics, and you will have a practical introduction to laboratory-based psychology research.
You will also take two semester-long introductory courses.
Linguistics and English Language 1A offers a brief introduction to the study of language in general and of English in particular.
Linguistics and English Language 1B will help you develop the tools and knowledge needed to investigate in a systematic way the different subsystems of language.
In this year, you will also be introduced to the study of aspects of regional and social variations of language in general, and of the English language in particular, and to the study of semantics and pragmatics.
In addition, you will choose from a range of option courses outside your primary subjects.
You will continue to study core areas of psychology, along with abnormal (clinical) psychology. You will practice and develop your professional and study skills, such as literature searching, report writing and ethical awareness.
You will also complete a year-long, intensive grounding in research methods and statistics to prepare you for Year 3.
You will also take Linguistic Theory and the Structure of English. In this you will learn detailed aspects of modern English structure. We strongly encourage you to take another linguistics course in either Cross Linguistic Variation or Phonetic Analysis and Empirical Methods.
You will choose advanced courses in psychology, expanding upon and combining the core areas required for British Psychological Society (BPS) accreditation. To support your research work, you will complete further specialist courses in research methods and statistics, and practice qualitative as well as quantitative research methods.
You will also take a selection of courses in linguistics. These may include:
- Speech Production & Perception
- Origins and Evolution of Language
- Child Bilingualism
You must take two courses in research methods and statistics. You will also complete a series of option courses that focus on specific areas of psychology. These courses build on and combine the core domains of psychology (biological, developmental, cognitive, social, and individual differences).
Precise course options change each year to reflect emerging topics, staff availability, and student demand. Examples of courses offered include:
- Social Psychology of Groups
- Human Personality
- Science of Close Relationships
- Psychology of Language Understanding
- Psychological Therapies
- Cognitive Neuroscience of Attention
In linguistics, these might be:
- Language Variation & Change
- Language Pathology
- Reading Old English
- First Language Acquisition
Alongside these courses, you will undertake a dissertation in either language sciences or psychology.
Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.
To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.
Teaching will take place at the Psychology building at George Square, and at other locations within the University's Central Area. You will have use of the specialised laboratories, the School's own dedicated library and the University's main library and computer facilities.
There are opportunities to study in Europe through international exchange programmes.
How will I learn?
Courses are taught through a combination of lectures, tutorials, practical classes, project work, peer-supported group work, and computer-based exercises.
How will I be assessed?
You will be assessed by various types of coursework and exams. In Year 3 will complete a group research project and in Year 4 you will complete an independent research project.
Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.
To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.
Our graduates develop high-level research, statistical, IT, and report-writing skills, which are valued by employers in various sectors. Many psychology graduates have gone on to work in healthcare and social services, charitable organisations, human resources, management, business and finance, consulting, and media and advertising. Some students continue their studies to enter a research or teaching career, or to train as a professional psychologist in a specific field (such as clinical, educational, forensic, health, or organisational psychology).
Standard entry requirement
The standard entry requirement is:
- SQA Highers: AAAA-AABB by the end of S5 or AAAA-AAAB by the end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.(Revised 09/04/2020 from AAAA-AAAB and to include alternate grades to be achieved by end of S6.)
- A Levels: AAA - ABB.
- IB: 43 points with 776 at HL - 37 points with 666 at HL.
Minimum entry requirement
The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:
- SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
- A Levels: ABB.
- IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.
The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:
- SQA: Highers: one from Biology or Human Biology, Chemistry, Computing Science or equivalent, Geography, Mathematics, Physics, or Psychology at B. National 5s: English at C. Mathematics at A or Mathematics and Physics both at B or Higher Mathematics at C.
- A Levels: one from Biology or Human Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science or equivalent, Geography, Geology, Mathematics, Physics, or Psychology at B. GCSEs: English at C or 4 and Mathematics at A or 7, or Mathematics and Physics both at B or 6, or Mathematics, Science plus Additional Science (or science double award) at BB or 66.
- IB: HL: one of Biology or Human Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science or equivalent, Geography, Mathematics, Physics, or Psychology at 5. SL: English at 5 and either Mathematics at 6 or Mathematical Studies at 7 (if not at HL).
We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.
International Foundation Programme
If you are an international student and your school qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to the University you may be eligible for admission to this degree programme through our International Foundation Programme.
We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.
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.
SQA, GCSE and IB
For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:
- SQA National 5 at C
- SQA Standard Grade at 3
- SQA Intermediate 1 at A
- SQA Intermediate 2 at C
- GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4
- Level 2 Certificate Grade C
- IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)
English language tests
We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified*:
- IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component.
- TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition) 92 or above with 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
- Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component.
- Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four components.
We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.
English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.
*(Revised 27 April 2020 to include TOEFL-iBT Special Home Edition.)
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It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.
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