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This interdisciplinary programme offers you the opportunity to deepen your understanding of areas of your undergraduate degree in Language & Communication as well as to specialize in areas of interest to you and your future profession.


 Postgraduate Programmes


 Honours in Linguistics / Applied Linguistics

This interdisciplinary programme offers you the opportunity to deepen your understanding of areas of your undergraduate degree in Language & Communication as well as to specialize in areas of interest to you and your future profession. You will complete four coursework modules and a research essay (Research Module 210730). The range of modules offered each year is subject to student interest and staff availability. You may also cross-list one or two modules from other postgraduate programmes of study.

Entrance requirements: BA degree with either Linguistics, a language or Language and Communication Studies as a major. Students should have attained an average of 65% in their third year.

For 2010, the Honours modules include:

Bilingualism and Multilingualism in Society and Education 210735

This module considers definitions, distinctions, typologies and descriptions of bilingualism. It considers bilingualism and multilingualism in society, looking at issues such as language choice, language dominance, the position of minority languages, language shift, language decline and language death.

The module also aims to develop an understanding of the main characteristics of multilingualism in Africa, to study policy options available to a multilingual society, to consider the main theoretical issues relevant for multilingual societies, to consider enabling strategies used in education in multilingual societies, and to consider the social justice issues on which an enabling curriculum should be based.

Formal Linguistics 210737

Students who had Linguistics as a major may select a specific area and do advanced studies in Phonetics and Phonology, Syntax, Semantics or Pragmatics. Students who did not have Linguistics as a Major, follow an introduction to the grammatical structure of language. This course includes an introduction to Phonetics & Phonology, Morphology, Syntax, Semantics and Pragmatics. This will provide the basic tools required for any advanced research in Linguistics or Applied Linguistics.

Critical Media Studies 210741

This module introduces students to ways in which media communication is structured, produced and interpreted. It looks at how information is transferred in newspapers, journals and magazines as well as in radio and television. The devices and methods of persuasion used by journalists will be critically analyzed. News texts from current publications will be chosen for specialized, in depth analysis.

Topics covered in this module include:

    definitions of the media, and of news

    distinctive features of media language in general and of language in the news in particular;

    what makes events newsworthy;

    the headline as a unique type of text;

    critical linguistic tools for analysing media discourse.

Business and Organisational Communication 210731 Participants will develop practical skills and knowledge of concepts and principles of effective business and organizational communication. They will gain an understanding of attitudes, policies, strategies and processes required in an increasingly business-minded world.

More specifically, the course will consider linguistic and communicative features of

    formal meetings;


    spoken messages, such as oral reports and telephone techniques;

    written messages, such as summaries, memos, letters and adverts;

    information and communication technology;

    communicating with tables, graphs, pie and bar charts.

Inter- and Cross-cultural Communication 210732

This module examines issues involved in communicating in contexts of cultural diversity. It includes an investigation of the nature of the communicative process, the competencies required to communicate and a detailed analysis of the nature of communicating across cultures in a multicultural society.

Topics investigated include:

    the communicative process and barriers to communication;

    communicative competencies and culture;

    the concept of culture in intercultural encounters;

    politeness, politeness systems and the presentation of face;

    communicative styles and asynchronies;

    intercultural and interlingual aspects of language use;

    discourse, diversity and dominance;

    culture, communication and the orality/literacy debate;

    intercultural communication in learning and business contexts.

Master's in Linguistics

Students may choose to do either a full Masters thesis or a structured Masters programme which includes four coursework modules (first year) and a research component or minithesis (second year).

The range of modules offered each year changes depending on student interest and staff availability. Generally the Masters students sit in on the Honours modules offered in the Department of Linguistics (for which they may complete additional assessment tasks), or select modules from the M Phil in Applied Linguistics / Language Education, or cross list up to 2 modules from other Masters programmes in the Faculty.

M Phil in Applied Linguistics / Language Education

This is a structured two year Masters programme offered jointly by the Department of Linguistics, Arts Faculty, and the Department of Didactics, Faculty of Education.

During the first year, students complete 6 compulsory and two optional modules. The range of modules available include:

Compulsory modules:

Introduction to Language


Language Acquisition Studies

Language Teaching and Learning (Part One)

Language Teaching and Learning (Part Two)

Research in Language Learning and Teaching

Optional modules:

Creativity, Reading and Writing

Language in Educational Planning

Materials Development

Discourse Analysis

Students wishing to register for this programme should apply to the Faculty of Education, UWC.

PhD in Linguistics or Applied Linguistics

Students write a full research thesis on a topic within any field of study for which there is expertise within the Department of Linguistics.


Students wishing to register for these postgraduate programmes should apply to the Faculty of Arts, UWC, as well as contact the Linguistics Department's Chairperson

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