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MA in Multilingualism, Linguistics & Education

  • Length
    1 year full-time or 2 years part-time
  • Department
    English and Comparative Literature, Educational Studies
  • Funding available

Course overview

The MA in Multilingualism, Linguistics and Education is an applied linguistics programme with an emphasis on diversity, both linguistic and cultural diversity, which also provides a solid understanding of the theoretical and practical issues that arise in multilingual and intercultural educational settings.

This programme is a unique combination of applied linguistics and educational studies. It draws on expertise from two departments, the Department of English and Comparative Literature and the Department of Educational Studies, to offer students a wide-ranging interdisciplinary programme. It will add value to your professional life, whether as a manager, teacher or researcher, or in other careers related to language and education.

This programme is targeted at students working or planning to work in education in diverse contexts, and those interested in professional roles related to intercultural and multilingual communication.

It will be of particular interest to students who wish to gain experience in language teaching, either as an additional or second foreign language (for example in multilingual classrooms, in bilingual education settings internationally, or English as a foreign language/English as a Lingua Franca) and aim to achieve a wider theoretical knowledge base. Some of the topics explored include:

  • English in a multilingual world
  • Multilingualism, code-switching and translanguaging
  • English as a Lingua Franca
  • Intercultural communication
  • English language teaching
  • Teaching languages from a multilingual perspective
  • Race, ethnicity and cultural diversity in education

Study in Brazil

There are three places available for students on this programme to spend a minimum of two months at our partner institution the Federal University of Bahia (Salvador, Brazil). Students can apply for this opportunity through Goldsmiths once they have enrolled on the MA.

Successful students will not have to pay additional tuition fees, and will receive a grant for living expenses while in Salvador provided by Erasmus+ and the UK National Agency. Students will be able to conduct their research projects as well as take a range of modules at the host institution.

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Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Alessia Cogo

Modules & structure

Overview

You learn how the English language and other languages are structured and used in a range of cultural settings, and how to support the literacy and learning development of students from multilingual backgrounds.

The course offers critical engagement with theory, policy and practice, and students benefit from intellectual debates in the disciplines of both education and linguistics.

Modules are taught by the Department of English and Comparative Literature (ECL) and the Department of Educational Studies (ES). You complete two compulsory modules, two option modules and a 15,000-word dissertation.

Core modules

Module title Credits
  English in a Multilingual World 30 credits
  or
  Language in its Sociocultural Context 30 credits
  Biculturalism and Bilingualism in Education 30 credits
  or
  Teaching Language in Multilingual Contexts 30 credits

In addition to the two core modules, you must choose two option modules.

One of the following modules from the Department of English and Comparative Literature:

Module title Credits
  Intercultural Discourse & Communication 30 credits
  Core Issues in English Language & Linguistics 30 credits
  Language & Ideology in Written Discourse 30 credits
  Analysing Discourse & Identity in Spoken Interaction 30 credits
  English as a Lingua Franca and Language Teaching 30 credits

And one of the following modules from the Department of Educational Studies:

Module title Credits
  Children's Literature, Culture and Diversity 30 credits
  Race, Culture and Education 30 credits
  Early Childhood Education for a Diverse Society 30 credits

For the dissertation we encourage hands-on research based on the uses of written and spoken language in a variety of institutional and informal contexts.

Where possible, we'll help you access multilingual settings relevant to you research. This will give unique insight into the practices of British classrooms and different linguistic communities.

You're also encouraged to draw on your own experience or unique cultural and linguistic background.

We run an additional MA study skills module in which we cover topics such as: using electronic resources; British academic essay writing & referencing at MA level; planning a dissertation.

Assessment

Coursework; essays; examinations; dissertation.

Download the programme specification. If you would like an earlier version of the programme specification, please contact the Quality Office.

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

Department

English at Goldsmiths is ranked:
2nd in London for creative writing*
18th in the UK for the quality of our research**
In the world’s top 100 universities for English language and literature***

English and Comparative Literature

Cervantes. Bukowski. Dostoevsky. Self. From classical literature and linguistics, to creative writing and contemporary fiction, we take a critical and creative approach to the discipline.

As a department we’re interested in a field of enquiry that extends from Old English to 21st-century literatures in English, French, Spanish and Italian. So you can study texts and films across a variety of periods and genres.

We’re engaged

We have a dedicated Writers’ Centre that encourages new writing and stimulates debate about all forms of literature. And we award the annual Goldsmiths Prize (for “fiction at its most novel”), which brings critically acclaimed writers like Ali Smith and Eimear McBride to campus.

We’re nurturing

We may be one of the largest departments at Goldsmiths but that doesn’t mean you won’t get personal support. Learn from our approachable team of academic staff and become part of the student-run English Society.

We’re vibrant

As one of the first departments in the UK to offer creative writing, you’ll be part of a hub of literary excellence – our graduates have gone on to win prestigious awards from the Orange Prize for Fiction to the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year.

Find out more about the Department of English and Comparative Literature

*The Complete University Guide Subject Rankings 2018
**Research Excellence Framework 2014, Times Higher Education research intensity subject rankings
***QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017


Education at Goldsmiths is ranked 8th in the UK for the quality of our research*

Educational Studies

As a department we’re interested in seeing what education can tell us about the social, political and economic forces of our times. And what these forces mean for the everyday lives of individuals and groups.

We see education as a window through which to view the world, and as something with the power to define who we are and how we live.

That’s why our research delves into areas including culture and identity, gender, multilingualism, and youth cultures, and why we maintain a commitment to social justice and inclusion.

Find out more about the Department of Educational Studies

*Research Excellence Framework 2014, Times Higher Education research intensity subject rankings

Skills & careers

Skills

You will acquire a wide-ranging understanding of educational and linguistic policy and research, especially with respect to multilingual settings. You will also develop your critical thinking, communication and research skills.

Careers

Teaching (especially language teaching or teaching in multilingual environments), administration and/or management of educational and language policy, publishing, the civil service, the media.

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths

Student profiles

Jack

"What caught my eye about this MA was the breadth of what you can cover and its interdisciplinary and inter-departmental approach."

"My route to the MA Multilingualism, Linguistics and Education (MLE) was quite meandering in many ways. My background had been in English Literature and I had spent the last few years teaching in a South London primary school, increasingly within the field of English as an Additional Language (EAL).

I was itching to start delving into research and theory that I could apply to my evolving practice as a teacher. I had looked around at many MAs which offered a straight-up 'teaching practice' and supporting EAL learners in the school or EAL in practice. What caught my eye about the MA MLE was the breadth of what you can cover and its interdisciplinary and inter-departmental approach.

It was a place where I could develop my knowledge in sociolinguistics (an area I’d always wished I'd gone down in my first degree) as well as look, through an international lens, at multilingual education systems and practices. This international dimension was one of the great positives about the course: getting to compare and contrast different educational systems across the globe (and not just on a Western axis of Europe, USA and Australia), as well as how multilingual the student body was: we would share first-hand experiences of education from places as diverse as China, India, Turkey and Chile. In many of the modules we did not shy away from vital questions of teacher and student reflexivity in relation to race, gender and class, which was also something that seemed lacking from more narrow and 'neutral' (of course there is no such thing) looking MAs I researched.

I also enjoyed how much I was able to delve into my arts-based education interests, as I was able to get involved with the Education department's Multilingual Digital Storytelling Global project. I felt my voice and ideas were really valued in this project.

Through a module called Children’s Literature and Cultural Diversity, I was also able to explore how to use filmmaking and creative writing can be used effectively for critical pedagogy in the classroom. 

After two years researching and writing about multilingualism in mainstream education contexts, I have now decided it is time to develop my own multilingualism and am currently living and teaching in Barcelona. I can already feel the benefit that the experiences and research and I envisage it will continue to have a huge impact on the people, spaces and projects I will encounter over here."

Tom

"The course has encouraged my critical thinking and given me the right tools to embrace the diversity of the globalized world that we live in."

"The MA in Multilingualism, Linguistics & Education provided me with an exciting opportunity to gain a solid foundation in the field of applied linguistics with a particular focus on its use in the educational context. The course has encouraged my critical thinking and given me the right tools to embrace the diversity of the globalized world that we live in. Engaging in lively discussions with other students from various backgrounds and our tutors made me look at different polemics from a variety of new and eye-opening angles.

The variety of modules allowed me to choose the ones that fit my needs and interests best. Throughout the year, there were a number of opportunities to hear guest speakers leading their respective field. It was a truly inspiring to be in an environment that allowed me to ask questions, with great tutors helping me acquire the necessary tools to answer them.

For your end of year thesis, which may seem like a daunting endeavour at first, you really get all the freedom you want to explore research questions that you are passionate about and you get all the guidance you need to find answers to them. Your lecturers guide and support you throughout the entire process and they are always available to answer any questions you may have. I couldn’t be more thankful for them. The course gave me the academic confidence and curiosity to pursue a PhD in the field of applied linguistics, which I don’t think would have been possible without the support from my supervisors during this degree.

The special focus on multilingualism couldn’t be more fitting for a university located in the heart of South East London where cultural and linguistic diversity can be found all around. Even after graduating, the area still feels like home and I always look forward to any opportunity to go back."

Entry requirements

You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least upper second class standard in education, linguistics, or another relevant subject. 

You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level.

If you are looking to develop or consolidate your language skills in academic English and study some background theory in your subject area, you may want to enrol on the pre-master programme: Graduate Diploma in Media, Culture and Social Sciences.

Equivalent qualifications
We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.

English language requirements
If English isn’t your first language, you’ll need to meet our English language requirements to study with us.

For this programme we require:

IELTS 6.5 with a 6.5 in writing and no element lower than 6.0

If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.

How to apply

You apply directly to Goldsmiths using our online application system. 

Before submitting your application you’ll need to have:

  • Details of your education history, including the dates of all exams/assessments
  • The email address of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively an electronic copy of your academic reference
  • personal statement – this can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online

          Please see our guidance on writing a postgraduate statement

  • If available, an electronic copy of your educational transcript (this is particularly important if you have studied outside of the UK, but isn’t mandatory)

You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.

When to apply

We accept applications from October for students wanting to start the following September. 

We encourage you to complete your application as early as possible, even if you haven't finished your current programme of study. It's very common to be offered a place that is conditional on you achieving a particular qualification. 

Late applications will only be considered if there are spaces available.

If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an earlier application deadline.

Selection process

Admission to many programmes is by interview, unless you live outside the UK. Occasionally, we'll make candidates an offer of a place on the basis of their application and qualifications alone.

Find out more about applying.

Fees, funding & scholarships

Find out more about tuition fees.

Find out more about funding opportunities for home/EU applicants, or funding for international applicants. If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an application deadline.

Study in Brazil

As part of this course, there are three places available for students to spend a minimum of two months at our partner institution the Federal University of Bahia (Salvador, Brazil). Students can apply for this opportunity through Goldsmiths once they have enrolled on the MA. Successful students will not have to pay tuition fees, and will receive a grant for living expenses while in Salvador provided by Erasmus+ and the UK National Agency. Students will be able to conduct their research projects as well as take a range of modules at the host institution. 

Scholarships

This programme is eligible for one of the department's fee waivers. Find out more about how to apply.

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