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Research Degree Details

MPhil/PhD options

Warwick Applied Linguistics offers the following research degrees:

  • PhD (3-4 years full-time or 5-7 years part-time)
  • MPhil (2 years full-time)

The research degree titles available are MPhil/PhD in:

  • Applied Linguistics; Discourse Studies; English Language Teaching; English Language Teaching and Applied Linguistics; Intercultural Communication; Linguistics

The choice of degree title is essentially yours; you will have the opportunity to change your degree title if appropriate during your period of registration.

The distinction between an MPhil and a PhD is partly a question of length (usually two years and a 60,000 word thesis versus three to four years and a 80,000 word thesis), and partly a question of what degree suits the particular project and the student's circumstances.

At Warwick, it is normal for students to be registered initially for an MPhil. They must successfully complete an upgrading process in order to continue to a PhD.

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If you join us as a research student aiming to gain a degree of PhD or MPhil, you will be allocated a supervisor and will work under their guidance in preparing for your degree during the course of your studies. In the early phases of the work, supervision tutorials generally take place once every week or two during term time and throughout the period of study they are very regular. You will receive instruction on research methodology both from your supervisor and from scheduled teaching shared with other students, which you will be expected to attend. Your supervisor may advise you to attend some other taught courses during your first period of work, either to help you get up to date in areas relating to your special field or maybe in order to broaden your perspectives. This will be in addition to your ongoing work on the research itself.

At every supervision meeting, a record is written of the work you have completed since the previous meeting, what was discussed at the meeting, and what you have undertaken to do for the next meeting. At times, you will also be required to prepare schedules for your proposed work and writing, in order to help you plan your work effectively and complete your research on time.

You will become a member of the research student community in the department, which is active, welcoming and very international. You will be affiliated with one or more specific research groups and will benefit from the opportunities that they offer to broaden your knowledge and understanding of research in the field, as well as to gain feedback on your own work.

We also offer joint supervision with the Language and Learning Research Group in the Department of Psychology. This may be particularly relevant if you are interested in the psychology of language and learning; for example, in the cognitive factors involved in successful and unsuccessful mastery of language, in individual differences in performance, in the structure and processing of representations underlying language use, or in gestures across languages and cultures.

Please feel free to get in touch with us to discuss any of the above possibilities further.

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How to apply

If you are interested in applying to our MPhil/PhD programme, we encourage you to contact us firstly for advice and to send us a research proposal so that we can evaluate whether or not we would be in a position to offer supervision for your project. The proposal should clearly state your intended research area and outline a plan for the work to be undertaken. It should justify the planned research with reference to the relevant literature as well as your research context and purpose. It should also give a clear indication of the research design and methods to be used and include a bibliography. For detailed guidelines on how to prepare a research proposal, please click here. For contact details, please the Advice section below.

In order to apply, you should submit the application form and the other documentation requested on the form (transcripts, research proposal, references, an English language score if your first language is not English). Please note that for admission onto Applied Linguistics research degrees, applicants whose first language is not English must achieve a score of at least 7.0 on the IELTS test, including a score of at least 7.0 on the Writing component (or the equivalent of these scores on a recognised test). If you have completed a Masters degree, you may be asked to submit a copy of your dissertation or some course work completed during the programme.

There is also extensive information on the University of Warwick's Postgraduate Research pages, including details about the application process, which are available on the Research Course Applications pages.

Apply online here

For information on funding and scholarships, please visit the Doctoral College website.

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Admission decisions

If you apply to register for MPhil/PhD, your application will be considered on the basis of your academic record and, in particular, your potential for research; the focus and quality of your research proposal; and the availability of supervision in the field of the proposal.

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Potential applicants are welcome to ask for any further information or advice before submitting an application. Please contact our Postgraduate Research Studies Admission Tutor  Professor Neil Murray. Telephone: +44 (0)24 765 24179, Email: N dot L dot Murray at warwick dot ac dot uk

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