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Linguistics and Phonetics BA (Full time) 2018 start

Course information for 2019 start

Key facts

UCAS code: Q100

Start date: September 2018

3 years full time

Typical A-level offer: AAB-ABB

UK/EU fees See fees section below
International fees £17,500 (per year)

Language requirements
IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5 in any component

Study abroad option: Yes
Work placement option: Yes


Language plays a pivotal role in all human affairs. Linguistics seeks to understand how it works – how it is structured, used in society, and represented in the mind – while phonetics looks at how sounds are produced and transmitted. Together, these disciplines offer you a deep understanding of the ways that humans communicate.

This degree will introduce you to the fundamentals of language, including theories of grammar and the production of speech sounds. But in a department with such diverse research interests, we can also offer a wide range of optional modules allowing you to pursue the areas that interest you, such as psycholinguistics, language acquisition, sociolinguistics, language contact and change, pragmatics, and discourse analysis.

Combining theoretical study with both quantitative and qualitative research, this programme equips you with a wide range of skills as well as a deep and broad understanding of a crucial facet of human behaviour.

Specialist resources

Leeds has some fantastic resources for studying linguistics and phonetics. We have a recording studio and fully-equipped phonetics lab for acoustic and articulatory speech analysis, as well as a linguistics lab including eye-tracking equipment and other resources to help with experimental research.

The department is also partnering with the M&S Company Archive, which is housed at Leeds, to explore language use over a century of Marks & Spencer’s heritage.

We encourage all of our students to make use of these facilities for module projects or dissertations, giving you valuable experience of different types of research.

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Course content

In your first year, you’ll take core modules introducing you to the main principles of linguistics and phonetics, as well as selecting discovery modules that will give you the chance to study a subject from outside the department.

It’s all valuable knowledge for you to build upon in the following year, where you’ll only study two compulsory modules on phonetics and syntax. You’ll have free rein to choose from a range of optional modules, covering three key pathways:

  • Formal analysis of language structure and sound
  • Language processing, development and evolution
  • Discourse studies and sociolinguistics

You’ll continue to benefit from the range of choice on offer in your final year, selecting optional modules and pursuing independent research to present in your dissertation.

Discovery modules from outside the department are also available throughout your degree – many of our students choose to learn a foreign language, but the choice is entirely yours.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Year 1

Compulsory modules

Language Projects 20 credits
Language: Meaning and Use 20 credits
Key Skills in Linguistics 20 credits
Language: Structure and Sound 20 credits
LCS Academic Essentials 5 credits

Year 2

Compulsory modules

Phonetics 20 credits
Syntax 20 credits

Optional modules

Psycholinguistics 20 credits
The Life Cycle of Languages 20 credits
Language and Gender 20 credits
Language Acquisition 20 credits
Language Change 20 credits
Interactional Linguistics 20 credits

Year 3

Compulsory modules

Linguistics Dissertation 40 credits

Optional modules

Languages in Contact 20 credits
Syntactic Theory 20 credits
Representation, Identity and Control 20 credits
Language Processing 20 credits
Experimental Pragmatics 20 credits
How Texts Work 20 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Linguistics and Phonetics BA in the course catalogue

Broadening your academic horizons

At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

Learning and teaching

Our tutors are experts in their fields and are at the cutting edge of research. To allow you to benefit from their knowledge and experience, we use a wide variety of teaching and learning methods. They include lectures, seminars, tutorials and workshops.

Independent study is also an important part of the degree, since it gives you the chance to work on your research skills and think critically about what you find. We offer plenty of support, and the University Library offers great training programmes to help you make the most of our excellent resources.


We also use different types of assessment – normally exams and essays, but oral presentations and group work can be included in some modules too. There is support on offer: we run extra classes on issues such as structuring essays, public speaking and exam technique throughout your time at Leeds.

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Entry requirements, fees and applying

Entry requirements

A-level: AAB-ABB

  • Access to HE Diploma

    Pass diploma with 60 credits overall, including at least 45 credits at level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. An interview and a piece of written work may also be required.

  • BTEC

    BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma: DDM-DDD. Other BTEC qualifications are also considered. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

  • Cambridge Pre-U

    D3, M1, M1 to M1, M1, M1

  • International Baccalaureate

    34 - 35 points overall with 16 at Higher Level

  • Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

    H2, H2, H2, H3, H3, H3 to H2, H2, H2, H2, H3, H3

  • Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

    BB in Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers or B in Advanced Highers and AAABB in Highers, to AB in Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers or A in Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers, or AABBB to AAAABB in Highers

  • Welsh Baccalaureate

    The Welsh Baccalaureate is not typically included in the academic conditions of an offer made to you for this course. If you choose to undertake the Welsh Baccalaureate we would strongly encourage you to draw upon these experiences within your personal statement, as your qualification will then be taken into account both when your application is initially considered by the selection panel and again when reviewed by the admissions tutor at the time your A-level results are passed to us.

  • Other Qualifications

    European Baccalaureate: 77% - 80%

Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

Where an applicant is taking the EPQ in a relevant subject this might be considered alongside other Level 3 qualifications and may attract an alternative offer in addition to the standard offer. If you are taking A Levels, this would be BBB at A Level and grade A in the EPQ.

Alternative entry

We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

Typical Access to Leeds offer: BBC at A Level and pass Access to Leeds.


We accept a wide range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information contact the School of Languages, Cultures and Societies admissions team.

English language requirements

IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

If you're an international student and you don't meet the English language requirements for this programme, you may be able to study our undergraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

How to apply

Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

School of Languages, Cultures and Societies Undergraduate Admissions Policy


UK/EU: See fees section below
International: £17,500 (per year)

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2019, the fee for 2019/20 will be £9,250. 

The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students starting in the 2019/20 academic year will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

Read more about paying fees and charges.

Financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.

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Career opportunities

A degree in Linguistics and Phonetics from Leeds will equip you with a wide range of skills. You’ll be able to study different approaches, some of which will be more arts-focused and others more science-oriented – and that means you have the opportunity to cultivate skills in a number of areas that employers highly value.

You’ll be able to study and analyse different types of data, both qualitative and quantitative, test your hypotheseis and use technology to solve problems. You’ll also be a critical thinker with an advanced understanding of communication.

As a result, graduates have gone into a range of careers, including advertising, marketing, publishing, broadcasting, journalism, PR, tourism and the civil service. They have also pursued further training for careers such as law and teaching, or more directly related fields such as speech and language therapy, forensic linguistics and speech and language technology.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

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Placement opportunities

Study abroad

On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. The University has partnerships with more than 400 universities worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America. 

Find out more at the Study Abroad website.

Work placements

Practical work experience can help you decide on your career and improve your employability. On this course you have the option to apply to take a placement year module with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas.

Find out more about work experience on the Careers website.

Order a prospectus online or telephone +44 (0)113 343 2336