English Language and Linguistics


Welcome to English Language and Linguistics at the University of Stirling, part of the Division of Literature and Languages within the School of Arts and Humanities.

Our focus is on a deep engagement with language as the crucial quality that makes us who we are. We investigate how language works, how people use it, what people use it for, where it came from and how it changes. We work within a vibrant research culture within Literature and Languages, and have staff with research expertise across the field, from discourse analysis and the use of language to construct identity, to historical, cognitive and evolutionary linguistics. Our teaching programmes are developed from our own research interests in combination with the needs and wishes of our students.

English Language and Linguistics forms a significant part of the undergraduate programme in English Studies at Stirling, and students can study language-related modules in each semester of their English Studies programme. In the first three semesters, students have the opportunity of studying three non-advanced modules which introduce different aspects of language studies: Language and Society (an introduction to sociolinguistics), Foundations of Language (an introduction to the forms and structures of language) and Language and the Brain (an introduction to the mental lexicon and psycholinguistics). In their fourth semester year students can choose to take an intermediate module in Stylistics: Writing and Language which introduces them to the linguistic choices and patterns of literary language. In semester five, students can study an advanced historical module in History of the English Language, and advanced language option modules are available in semesters six and seven (the precise modules vary year on year according to staff availability). Students can also do their dissertation on a language-related topic in their final semester.

Our postgraduate M.Litt. programme in English Language and Linguistics is taking applications now. The MLitt is suitable for students keen to extend their knowledge of English Language and Linguistics, and those who plan to proceed to advanced research.

We also have a fortnightly reading group at which we discuss interesting recent (and not so recent) papers in English Language and Linguistics.