The nexus between people and language is where most sociolinguistic research takes place, and at the University of Liverpool, research in sociolinguistics focuses in particular on the relationship between society and language, drawing on expertise from Modern Languages.
Why study with us?
A stimulating, supportive and engaged community is what I’ve found by coming to study and research Sociolinguistics at the University of Liverpool. Beside the plentiful of opportunities to deepen my subject knowledge, make transdisciplinary connections, and acquire new skills, at the beginning of my second year of full-time study I have already been able to attend a weeklong workshop in Vienna, publish my first paper and obtain funding to organise an international conference. The people-centred approach of the Department creates a sense of belonging to a community that is both thriving and exciting.Jessica Iubini-Hampton - PhD in Sociolinguistics
in sector overall for research classified as 'world leading (4*) or 'internationally excellent' (3*) in latest Research Excellence Framework (2021)
in the Guardian League Table for Modern Languages and Linguistics for 2018.
of research environment classified 'world leading' (4*) or 'internationally excellent' (3*) in the latest Research Excellence Framework (2021)
With specialists exploring sociolinguistic issues in the Francophone, Hispanophone, Lusophone and Italophone world, as well as in North Africa and the Middle East, Sociolinguistics at the University of Liverpool is ideally positioned to provide a range of national and transnational perspectives on research into language and society.
Sociolinguistics at the University of Liverpool is home to a critical mass of researchers examining the Linguistic Landscape, including a wide range of questions around language in the public space. The Department of Modern Languages & Cultures boasts two members of the Editorial Board of the journal Linguistic Landscape: An International Journal, including the editor. In addition to testing out methodological approaches to language in the public space, researchers in Sociolinguistics at the University of Liverpool consider the linguistic landscapes of France and Italy, with particular emphasis on regional and minority languages. This work has also been extended into the Middle East with recent projects undertaken in Jordan, Algeria and Kuwait.
In addition, researchers in Sociolinguistics at the University of Liverpool explore the themes of migration studies and minority languages as part of the rapidly burgeoning field of new speakers. Set against a context of language policy, language ideologies, and linguistic legitimacy, colleagues have tackled issues around linguistic capital.
Members of the research group are currently leading an AHRC-funded Research Network on Multilingual Memorialisation, working in collaboration with colleagues in Algeria, Cape Verde and Eritrea to explore the extent to which monuments and historical memory is presented multilingually in the public space.
They hosted the launch of the new Linguistics Section of the journal Modern Languages Open, with contributions from the section’s editorial board. The Linguistics Section is edited by Nicola Bermingham (University of Liverpool), and is supported by an Editorial Board which consists of Michelle Harrison (University of Leicester), Kerstin Hoge (University of Oxford), Adam Ledgeway (University of Cambridge) and Leigh Oakes (Queen Mary University of London). https://liverpooluniversitypress.blog/2019/09/27/modern-languages-open-to-launch-a-linguistics-section/
Recent PhDs supervised include:
- Young speakers of Mexican indigenous languages: Contesting language ideologies and policies
- A Sociocognitive approach to audiovisual translated texts: Dubbing/Subtitling in TV Series (English/Italian)
- Regional languages in the Linguistic Landscape: The visibility and status of Occitan and Corsican in southern France
- Brand Names in the Linguistic Landscape of Aqaba, Jordan
- Managing France's regional languages: Language policy in bilingual education in Alsace
- Investigating current language policy in Alicante: a case study
- Multilingualism in the Linguistic Landscape of urban Jordan.
Our research themes are:
• Linguistic Landscapes
• New Speakers
• Language policy
• Minority and regional languages
• Language and new media
• The sociolinguistics of memorialisation
• Postcolonial sociolinguistics
We particularly welcome research proposals that match those of our researchers, including linguistic landscapes, language policy and education, language and migration, and new media.
The University of Liverpool has excellent research facilities within the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences. For postgraduate researchers, these include designated shared office space and access to a vast repository of sociolinguistic journals (including e-journals), through the Sydney Jones Library.
As a postgraduate researcher at the University of Liverpool, you will become part of the Liverpool Doctoral College. The LDC supports all postgraduate researchers across the University to thrive in their doctoral programme with our dedicated team of esteemed supervisors, professional services staff, and student peers, ensuring that our students succeed in their studies.
• Image, Sound and Performance and Conflict
• Memory and Heritage
• Place, Space and Belonging
• Media Histories: From Manuscript to Digital
Study options and fees
|PhD||Duration||UK students||International Students|
|Full time||2-4 years||£4,596* (2022)||£25,950* ^ (lab based programmes)
£20,400* (non Lab based programmes) (2022)
|Part time||4-6 years||£2,298* (2022)||£12,975* (lab based programmes)
£10,200* (non Lab based programmes) (2022)
* This excludes potential research support fees also known as ‘bench fees. You will be notified of any fee which may apply in your offer letter.
^ Self funded full time international students studying a lab based programme will receive a £2,000 reduction in their fees for the first year only.
If an EU student starts their studies in 2020-21, before 1 August 2021, they will have a fee classification of EU and pay UK fee rates for the duration of this registration. The exception being ROI students, who will continue to be charged fees at the UK fee rate, post 1 August 2021.
Applications are welcomed from both full-time and part-time students. For research degrees, we would normally expect applicants to have a BA or BSc degree of 2:1 standard (and also an MA) in a subject relevant to the proposed field of research.
English language requirements
|IELTS Academic requirement - SELT and non-SELT||Overall 6.5 no band below 6.0|
|TOEFL iBT requirement||Minimum 88 overall with L 19 W 19 R 19 and S 20|
|C1 Advanced CAE requirement||Overall 176 with no less than 169 in any paper|
|Trinity College London, Integrated Skills in English (ISE II)||ISE II with an overall pass with merit in components|
|Cambridge IGCSE as a First Language||Grade C|
|Cambridge IGCSE as a Second Language||Grade B|
|Cambridge English Level 3 Certificate in ESOL International (Proficiency)||Overall 176 with 169 in components|
|Cambridge English Level 3 Certificate in ESOL International (Advanced)||Overall 176 with 169 in components|
|Cambridge English Level 2 Certificate in ESOL International (Advanced)||Overall 176 with 169 in components|
How to apply
Research degree applications can be made online. You'll also need to ensure that you have funding to cover all fees.
Applications are open all year round.
Before you apply, we recommend that you identify a supervisor and develop a research proposal
Find a supervisor
View supervisors in this area
Need help finding a supervisor? Contact us
- Postgraduate Support team
- Email: HLC-PGR@liverpool.ac.uk
Related studentships: self-funded and funded PhD projects
Related Doctoral Training Partnerships
Doctoral Training Partnerships support future researchers with funding and a rewarding learning environment where you can collaborate with leading researchers.