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Online PhD In Linguistics

Last Updated on January 25, 2023 by Fola Shade

PhD Linguistics is a doctorate level course that can be completed in a minimum of 2 years. A PhD Linguistics candidate researches on topics like Advances in Historical and Comparative Linguistics, Dialectology, Bilingualism and Multilingualism etc.

Students should complete their Master’s degree with more than 55% marks in the relevant stream in order to be considered eligible to apply to this course. 

Program Overview

The doctoral program in Linguistics and Applied Linguistics focuses on the study of human language and the application of that study to the human condition.  Students in this program will choose a research specialization which can be formal linguistics, applied linguistics, or some combination of these areas.  The curriculum will provide training in linguistics and applied linguistics with focused research in several areas such as phonetics, phonology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics.  Second language acquisition and second language teaching and learning, TESOL (teaching English to speakers of other languages), language contact and change, including World Englishes, are also research possibilities in addition to sociolinguistics, language planning, discourse analysis, language and cognition.

A Brief Description of the PhD Program

The PhD program in Linguistics allows a high degree of flexibility and specialization, and is designed to encourage students to advance quickly to producing original research. Students may choose any of several standard areas of specialization, or design their own specialization with the help of their faculty advisor.

The PhD program in Linguistics consists of three stages, which correspond to the three Graduate College doctoral degree stages (see chapter 6 in the Graduate College Handbook). The entire PhD program in Linguistics is intended to take 5 or 6 years: 2 years for Stage 1, and 3 or 4 years for Stages 2 and 3.

Stage 1, which should be completed in two years, consists of 40 hours of graduate coursework, and the Stage 1 qualifying examination; at the completion of Stage 1, students are eligible to receive a MA in Linguistics.

Stage 2 consists of 64 hours of graduate coursework, the Stage 2 qualifying examination, and the preliminary examination.

Stage 3 consists of the final defense and dissertation deposit.

How to get admission in a Good PhD Linguistics college?

  • To secure a seat in a good college for a PhD Linguistics program, candidates must hold an exceptional academic record.
  • Look out for the eligibility, cut-offs, selection criteria, admission process, application procedure, and other updates to benefit you for better preparation.
  • The qualifying cut off marks of UGC NET for General category is 75.33%. 
  • Candidates should put their time and effort into the entrance test as well as be prepared for a personal interview round.
  • They should be well versed with their research topic so that they can impress the interview panel with their research idea.

PhD Linguistics: What is it about?

PhD Linguistics: What is it about?

Information and details about the PhD Linguistics program are as follows.

  • PhD Linguistics is a doctorate level program that can be completed over a span of 2 to 3 years.
  • This course has been designed to specialize students in the field of gathering in-depth knowledge of theoretical issues in the field of Linguistics. 
  • It is an interdisciplinary field which combines computing and rule-based modeling of natural language, computational linguistics, translators for industry jargons, etc.
  • This program includes identification and codification of the current meaning and usage of words, studying how language has changed over time, documentation of undocumented languages, reconstructing and encouraging the growth of dead or dying languages. 
  • Upon completion of the course, one gets employment in the Educational Sector, Translation Companies, Media and News Companies, Data Centres etc. in both private and public sector companies.

PhD Linguistics Course Highlights

Highlights for PhD Linguistics program are provided in the table given below:

Course LevelDoctorate
Full-FormDoctor of Philosophy in Linguistics
Duration3 years
exam typeSemester System
EligibilityPost-graduate degree
Admission ProcessEntrance exam
Course FeeINR 2,000 to INR 1,00,000 p.a.
Average SalaryINR 35,000 and upwards
Top Recruiting CompaniesColleges, Universities, Public and Private Organizations, News and Broadcasting etc.
Job PositionsAudiologist, Translator, Lexicographer, Broadcaster, Psycholinguist etc.

Why study PhD Linguistics?

Why study PhD Linguistics?

The goal to attain a PhD in Linguistics degree will depend on each individual’s aspirations and goals. Some of the reasons to pursue this course are as follows.

  • Career choices: Any candidate with a doctorate degree in linguistics is eligible for numerous job opportunities. One can not only work in the educational industry as teachers and professors but also as Translators, Writers, in the foreign language industry, Psycholinguist etc.
  • High pay: Pay is an attractive feature for linguists. No matter the industry one chooses to work in, having a doctorate degree in linguistics will act as an advantage to the salary. If one is lucky enough to get employed in a foreign organization, the pay is even higher.
  • A better understanding of the world’s cultures: Linguistics acts as a tool to approach languages across the globe in a scientific manner. One gets to learn about the sounds, semantics, syntactic etc. This opens up the world to an average candidate. One is able to dive deep into not only the language but also the culture of different countries.
  • Advanced linguistics skills: Being a doctorate level program, one is guided by the best in the industry. Candidates are researching and working in an on-hands manner which helps in learning all existing linguistics skills as well as pick up new ones.

Admission to this course will be done based on marks scored by candidates in national level entrance exams. Some of the most popular PhD Linguistics Entrance Exams in India are GATE, UGC-NET etc.

The aim of this course is to learn the basics and in-depth research on linguistics, complete a thesis and successfully establish a carer in the same field. The average course fee to pursue this program ranges between INR 20,000 and INR 1,00,000.

After successfully earning a PhD Linguistics degree, one can get hired as Translators, Professors, Forensic Linguist etc.

Major employment areas that students can work in on completing this course include Data or IT Sector, News and Media, Educational Sector, Hearing Centres etc. 

The average salary package for these candidates ranges from INR 35,000 monthly and above. It basically depends on the level of the company, organization and also on the skill, experience and expertise of the candidate.

If students wish to do further research, they can become independent researchers and publish their research papers. They can also earn a DSc (Doctor of Science) degree in the related domain in future. PhD Linguistics Admission Process

PhD Linguistics Admission Process

  • Most of the colleges and universities follow an entrance-based process for admission to PhD Linguistic courses.
  • On cracking the entrance test, candidate’s research topic, proposal, methodology etc. are checked and an interview is held.  

Entrance Based Admission

Most of the colleges and universities offer admission to PhD Linguistics on the basis of entrance exams like GATE, UGC NET etc.

The step-by-step procedure for entrance-based admission is as follows: 

  • Step 1: Students have to register on the official website. 
  • Step 2: Fill the application form with correct details.
  • Step 3: After examination, a cutoff list will be released on the website. Seats will then be allotted to candidates based on their scores in the entrance exam. 
  • Step 4: Some colleges also conduct personal interviews and group discussion for admission to this course. 
  • Step 5: On meeting all the eligibility criteria, a student will then be offered admission to the course.  

PhD Linguistics Eligibility Criteria

The eligibility criteria for admission into PhD Linguistics courses will differ from institute to institute. The general eligibility criteria for the top colleges are as follows:

  • A masters degree from a recognized university or institute in the same specialization.
  • A minimum aggregate of at least 55% and above must have been scored at the master’s level.
  • Some universities also require the candidates to submit a research proposal that outlines that topic of research and the methodology of the research.

PhD Linguistics Entrance Exams

Admission to PhD Linguistics program will be done based on the candidate’s performance in the entrance test.

Some of the popular entrance exams are briefly explained below:

  • UGC NET: The National Testing Agency conducts this exam on behalf of the University Grants Commission. Qualified candidates are granted admission to the various doctorate level courses. This test is also used for  deciding the eligibility for JRF or post of Assistant Professor in colleges and universities. 
  • University of Delhi Entrance Test: Delhi University’s entrance exam is held annually for admission into UG, PG and doctorate programs. The exam pattern is different as per the program applied to. 
  • Banaras Hindu University Entrance Test: Banaras Hindu University conducts an entrance exam for its PhD applicants annually, also called BHU RET. The exam is held in three stages including a research proposal and a personal interview round. 
  • Jadavpur University Entrance Test: Jadavpur University conducts a written test and a round of personal interview for admission to PhD Linguistics program. Candidates with an M.Phil. degree and qualification of SET/NET exam are exempted from the entrance exam.

he application dates, exam dates and the mode of the exam of the above mentioned exams are provided in the table below.

Exam NameApplication DeadlineDate of ExaminationMode of Exam
UGC NETJune 30, 2020To be announcedOnline
DUETJuly 18, 2020To be announcedOnline
BHU UET June 26, 2020July 16, 2020Offline
Jadavpur University Entrance TestLast week of June 2020Third Week of July 2020Offline

How to prepare for PhD Linguistics entrance exams?

Most of the institutes which conduct entrance exams for PhD Linguistics course do not have a well-defined syllabus. Tips for preparation for entrance tests are as follows.

  • Some general topics to be studied for the entrance tests include General Research Aptitude, Phonology, Morphology, Syntax, Semantics-Pragmatics, Sociolinguistics, Historical Linguistics etc.
  • Brush up all basic linguistics study material learnt at masters and undergraduate level.
  • Get up to date with the latest news, general knowledge etc., based on which questions might be asked in the personal interview round.
  • The research proposal for the program is to be prepared and studied thoroughly.
  • Past papers of entrance exams can be downloaded from university websites and used for practice. The practice must be done while timing oneself and recreating exam situations.

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