The specialized Master’s degree Linguistics does not link to a specific program but is open to students with a Bachelor’s degree in linguistics or related fields (see Annex to the Study Regulations for details). The admission requires acquired academic skills at the undergraduate level equivalent to 21 ECTS credits in the field of linguistics. Applicants who meet the academic requirements can be admitted “sur dossier” without a Bachelor’s degree in Linguistics. This program can be studied completely in English* and therefore explicitly addresses Swiss and international students.
At the request of the study program directorate:
The decision on admission to the study program is made by the study program directorate.
* Courses from the focus area 'Romance Linguistics' are taught in the languages studied (i.e. French, Italian, Spanish, Rumansh), courses from the focus area 'Language - Interaction - Society' are predominantly taught in German as well as some Dutch language courses. Indo-European Studies is taught predominantly in German as well.
Please provide a motivation letter as well as an independently written seminar paper in the language of instruction of your chosen focus area that you are applying for (German or English).
Language of the motivation letter and written work
Descriptive Linguistics, Indo-European Studies, Psycholinguistics, Slavic Linguistics,
|German or English|
|Digital Linguistics, English Linguistics, Phonetics and Speech Sciences||English|
|Romance Linguistics||Italian, French, or Spanish|
Motivation letter: Your motivation letter should outline your reasons for applying to the specialized Linguistics MA and how this program aligns with your academic and career goals in the field of linguistics. You may also want to articulate your long-term goals in the field of linguistics, whether it's pursuing a Ph.D., working in academia, or contributing to language-related industries. Explain how the specialized master's program will help you achieve these goals and how you envision using the knowledge and skills acquired during the program.
Written work: Provide an example of an independently written work, e.g. from your BA studies. This does not have to be on a linguistic topic if you come from a background unrelated to Linguistics.
The specialized Master’s in Linguistics requires very good knowledge of English at an academic level. This means that before the start of your studies, you need to have very good skills in listening and reading comprehension, speaking and writing.
Your level of English should allow you to actively participate in scientific discussions, write academic seminar papers, and follow lecture and seminar contents. You should be able to communicate fluently in spoken English, compose complex texts in academic or professional settings and present your thoughts and arguments clearly and convincingly. You should also be able to deliver presentations in English (unless otherwise stated in a specific course description, e.g. if the language of instruction is Spanish, then you should be able to communicate in Spanish).
Candidates must have at least 21 ECTS credits from linguistic contents at Bachelor's level. If this is not the case, candidates may be admitted to the program with additional requirements of up to 21 ECTS credits to be completed in BA level courses in linguistics. This additional requirement can be fulfilled during the course of study. However, we strongly advice you to fulfil this requirement before your studies or in the first semester.
Important: Courses aimed at learning a language (e.g. 'Oral English', 'Writing in English', 'Business English', etc.) do not count as linguistic content. Only courses that belong to the field of Linguistics will be considered in the evaluation of previous knowledge in linguistics.
The mandatory methodology modules are very technical and can thus be quite demanding. We recommend you brush up on your highschool math knowledge before taking these modules. See section Preparation for more detailed information on the mandatory requirements.
Upload all the necessary documents on the application portal (see documents to submit and the paragraph Admission Requirements Master Program Linguistics above).
UZH students apply for the program change at the Administration Office.
Admission into the Master's program involves the following three steps:
Annex to the Study Regulations (Linguistics MA, German)
Module Catalogue (Linguistics MA)
Legal basis and Framework Ordinance of the University of Zurich (General information)