Can you learn a new language the same way you learned your mother tongue? How does our brain cope with multiple languages? Is there a teaching pedagogy that is the most effective?
This Master's track focuses on research into second or foreign language learning and teaching. You study the learning process and the use of new languages and the track allows you to focus your research on your language of choice: English as a second language, Dutch, French, German, Swedish, Chinese, etc. The skills and knowledge you acquire in this track are highly valued in areas of language teaching and testing, educational publishing, language policy making, and linguistic research.
You will approach second language acquisition from many angles, including linguistics, (social and cognitive) psychology, social interaction, and language teaching and assessment. The dynamic aspects of language development—how a wide range of factors (e.g. a learner's age, motivation, the amount of input) affect the learning process—receives particular attention. As such, our MA track trains you to become an all-round expert on second language development.
While this is not a teacher training programme, there is ample opportunity to discuss teaching-related issues and it is possible in some cases to do a language teaching internship.
Read more about the Department of Applied Linguistics.
When I was an undergraduate in 2010, studying abroad was nothing more than a mere dream. Five years later, this dream became reality! I thanked God that after so much effort, I had finally been able to obtain a scholarship from LPDP (Indonesian Endowment Fund for Education). Shortly after, I was accepted in the one-year Applied Linguistics MA program in Groningen. This degree was really everything I hoped for as I aspire to become an English teacher in Indonesia.
Besides gaining a theoretical insight, I have also acquired practical experience in this field. These experiences and qualifications will undoubtedly benefit me in my career within teaching and education, particularly towards TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language).
I had had more than six years experience in the department of TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) before I decided to further advance in my professional career. To do so, I wanted to acquire a more in-depth understanding of how languages are learned and which neuroscientific components and teaching methods are involved in the efficient and sustainable acquisition of a second language.
The degree of Applied Linguistics contains a lot of research and skills to be obtained. Despite being challenging, the study is interesting and keeps students as well as staff engaged with the topic at hand. I particularly enjoyed the modules concerning Statistics, Language Development, and Teaching Methodology. The advanced level of teaching in combination with being on the forefront of research in this field also results in great employment chances when entering the labour market.
With Groningen being a very international city, I made friends from all over the world, which was an incredibly enriching and inherently positive experience.
The good facilities at the university are another positive component whilst I also liked the applied teaching methods
and the supportive staff and academic surroundings. I aspire to continue working in the field of TEFL material development.
My time in Groningen has immensely contributed to obtaining the skill-set required for this work.
I was lucky enough to spend one semester at the Department of Applied Linguistics in Groningen, where I chose to follow the modules of Research Methodology, Teaching Methodology, and Theories of Second Language Development. Learning and comparing different theories of language learning, acquisition, and development enabled us to think critically about the discussed issues and also taught us how to conduct our own research.
The Applied Linguistics MA track in Groningen really excels due
to the expertise of the instructors as well as the support provided
to the students. All in all, the learning community is very
inclusive and constructive. The classes taught me to think
critically and also contributed towards the development of my
academic English skills. There is also a strong emphasis on a very
collaborative approach, which I thoroughly enjoyed. The semester I
spent in Groningen benefited me massively as a
person as I was privileged enough to spend half a year in a very international environment, which enriched my academic skills as well as my general knowledge. The university and city of Groningen have been the perfect choice for me and I could only recommend studying there!
I ended up choosing the MA track Applied Linguistics due to my interest in language as such and particularly my interest for finding the best method of teaching and learning second languages.
The degree at UG appealed to me as it balances theory and practice incredibly well. Simultaneously, I was looking for a programme that was affordable and did not exceed the span of one year. I cannot say I have been disappointed: the instructors are experts in their field, and lectures and seminars are well-balanced in their emphasis on theory, and individual and group assignments. This keeps the seminars very engaging as there is always room for debate within the group. As with any MA programme, it is a lot of work. However, the studying certainly contributes to our academic development. A question I frequently hear is: “What is applied linguistics? Are you going to be a teacher?” The actual options are much broader: following the completion of The MA track, you will be an expert in teaching languages. This enables you, for instance, to work in a language centres, as an advisor as on how to acquire language, or as a researcher.
Are you a non-EU/EEA student from Russia, India or Indonesia, starting a Master's programme at the Faculty of Arts? If so, you could qualify for the University of Groningen OTS/Talent Grant, Faculty of Arts, a partial scholarship which helps you to finance your studies.
Read more about the OTS/Talent Grant Faculty of Arts.
Are you interested in a research oriented career? Please also check our Research Master's Programme of Linguistics.