Final year modules

Compulsory modules:

You will complete either a Language Dissertation or Language Investigation.

Language Investigation

The Language Investigation module brings all the research skills and command of resources that you’ve acquired during the previous two years of study to bear on a year-long individual piece of work on a linguistic topic of your own choosing. In the Language Investigation report, you’ll be expected to demonstrate professional competence in the materials and methods of linguistic research, an understanding of the relevant theoretical issues, and a capacity for independent thinking and clear presentation of your findings.

Language Dissertation

The Language Dissertation offers you an opportunity to explore in depth a linguistic topic of your own choosing, and to bring all the research skills and command of resources that you’ve acquired during the previous two years of study to bear on a year-long individual piece of work. On a more ambitious scale and with correspondingly wider subject-matter and range of resources than the Language Investigation module, the Language Dissertation may be particularly appropriate for students who would like to proceed to a masters-level programme or to a research degree.

Option modules

You will take four or five option modules from a selection which may include:

Language and the Law 

Language and the Law studies the use of language in legal contexts (e.g. courtroom discourse, and legal-lay communication) or where legal issues may arise.  All texts and practices are analysed from a predominantly linguistic point of view.  

Language, Gender and Identity

Do men and women speak ‘differently’? What are the implications of gender-marked lexis? How does gender interact with identity? And what do we mean by identity, anyway? These are some of the questions posed, explored and critiqued throughout the module as we investigate the interface between language, gender and identity using a range of historical and contemporary, spoken and written texts. Throughout we assess the possible impacts and implications of gender and identity analysis, and its relevance for the 21st century. 

Discourse and Society 

This module considers the role of discourse in society, and the extent to which our attitudes, beliefs and actions are a result of what is communicated to us by the media, newspapers and advertising. Through the analysis of the linguistic and visual discourse of written texts from different genres and interpreting, the module looks at how we might recognise, and guard against, such 'spin' and manipulation. 

English Language Teaching 

The modules the way in which linguistic theory is applied to the field of language teaching, especially foreign and second-language teaching, providing a thorough introduction to the theory underlying the subject and gives you an opportunity to relate theoretical knowledge to pedagogic practice by including an element of fieldwork and data analysis. 

Language and the Mind      

The module covers key areas in psycholinguistics that relate to language representation and development in the mind and work from the emerging discipline of cognitive linguistics. It considers topics such as language representation in the mind, language schemata and long term memory, construction grammars, motivated meaning, the relationship between language and gesture, neurolinguistics and language disorders.

Narrative Analysis

This module explores the features and function of narratives, such as narrative structure, key features, more peripheral qualities, and the similarities and differences across narrative types and contexts. Analysis focusses on literary works, examining both canonical (e.g. Dickens, Austen) and contemporary (e.g. American Psycho, J.G. Ballard) texts, as well as spoken, cinematic and other multimodal narrative forms. 

Ordinary Creativity 

This module looks at what it means to be creative with language in ordinary situations which people encounter in their everyday lives, from their own conversations to shop signs and websites, and considers how new media presents new opportunities for informal and playful written communication. 


The aim of this module is to explore the lexis of English, considering the nature of the English lexicon, and how it’s organized, and what it means to ‘know’ a word. We’ll look at word meanings, including figurative meaning, and phrases and phraseology, and explore the ways words are used in text.