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Education Master's and PhD degree programmes Linguistics Multilingualism
Header image Multilingualism

Multilingualism

Do you know more languages than the one you are reading now? Chances are, you are bilingual or multilingual. We live in a world where multilingualism is the norm and monolingualism the exception.

This comes with challenges and possibilities, for individuals, societies, and organisations. Do you want to take the lead in dealing with these challenges and possibilities? Then this is the MA programme for you!

This Multilingualism Master’s track trains you to become a diversity manager specialised in linguistic and cultural diversity. You will develop expertise on bilingualism and multilingualism from a variety of angles: sociolinguistic, educational, cognitive, cultural, historical, management and policy. You will learn how to do your own linguistic research, but also how to manage linguistic diversity in various settings, such as the workfloor, in education, and on regional, national and transnational levels. You will deal with day-to-day issues such as helping companies overcome (intercultural) communication problems, design effective language policies or give schools advice on how best to teach pupils with diverse language backgrounds.

Upon finishing the Multilingualism Master’s track, students will receive a MA degree in Linguistics.

Facts & Figures
Degree
MA in Linguistics
Course type
Master
Duration
12 months (60 ECTS)
Croho code
60815
Language of instruction
English
Start
September
Faculty
Arts
Why study this programme in Leeuwarden?
  • The programme is taught in Leeuwarden (European Cultural Capital 2018), in the bilingual province of Fryslân, which offers easy access to multilingual communities, research organizations and a vibrant student life
  • Many opportunities for challenging regional, national and international internships
  • Intensive working collaborations between staff and students. You will mostly be taught in small groups, by leading experts in an inspiring and truly international teaching-learning environment
  • High employability rate of our alumni
Programme
Periods
CoursesCourse Catalog >1234
Essential Statistics (5 EC)
Minority Languages: The Case of Frisian (5 EC)
Language Planning and Policy (10 EC)
The Multilingual Mind (5 EC)
The Multilingual School (5 EC)
Internship (10 EC, optional)
Language, Narrative and Values (10 EC, optional)
Ma Thesis Multilingualism (20 EC)
Programme options
Master's Honours Programme (honours program)

The Master's Honours Programme was developed especially for students who want to get more from their studies.

It is a programme worth 15 ECTS that is followed in addition to the standard Master's programme. It is a one-year interdisciplinary programme that is designed to introduce students to various aspects of leadership.

Master's Placement (specialization)

This Master's track includes an optional work placement for which you are awarded ECTS credit points.

It is your responsibility to find a placement yourself, but the Office for Student Affairs can offer help with this where necessary.

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional
Entry requirements

Transfer options

Transferring from...

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
English Language and CultureUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

Minorities & MultilingualismUniversity of GroningenNo additional requirements
American StudiesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a premaster/minor in Linguistics

Information ScienceUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a premaster/minor in Linguistics

Dutch Language and CultureUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

LinguisticsUniversity of GroningenNo additional requirements
International Relations and International OrganizationUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a premaster/minor in Linguistics

Classics (part-time)University of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a premaster/minor in Linguistics

European Languages and CulturesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

Middle Eastern StudiesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a premaster/minor in Linguistics

Communication and Information StudiesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

With a premaster/minor in Linguistics

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Duitse Taal en CultuurAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

European Languages and CulturesAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

English Language and CultureAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

Franse Taal en CultuurAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

Friese Taal en CultuurAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

Dutch Language and CultureAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

Taal- en CultuurstudiesAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

LinguisticsAll Research universitiesNo additional requirements
Vergelijkende Indo-Europese TaalwetenschapAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

With a specialization or premaster/minor in Linguistics

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
language test

Additional requirements English: A VWO diploma or a subject certificate for VWO English (mark 6 or higher), minimum requirement of TOEFL iBT 100 (with a minimum of 25 on writing skills), or IELTS 7 (with a minimum of 6.5 on all items). Cambridge C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a minimum score of 185. If you have a VWO diploma a language test is not required.

previous education

A Bachelor diploma in the field of:

  • Language and Culture Studies
  • Linguistics
  • Other Arts degrees (admission interview required)
  • Social sciences (admission interview required)

Students who have a bachelor's degree from a research university in the Netherlands are eligible for enrollment if they have completed modules in linguistics as part of their degree.

These students can enrol in Studielink.nl and then get in touch with us to receive an admission letter. This admission letter must be taken to the Student Desk of the Faculty of Arts (https://www.rug.nl/let/onze-faculteit/organisatie/diensten-en-voorzieningen/bsz) where a Declaration of Admissions to Final Exams (VTAE) must be filled in to complete the enrollment.

Students from other backgrounds (such as other Arts degrees, or degrees in the Social Sciences or Law) are also very welcome to apply to the programme. Please get in touch with the programme coordinator to determine whether you need to complete a pre-master programme before enrolling.

other admission requirements

To assess whether your educational/academic background meets the specific programme requirements, we will consider the level and curriculum of your previous studies. This evaluation is carried out by our Admissions Office and the Admissions Board.

Registration procedure

Note: it's not possible to start in February. For more information, please contact the study advisor.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students15 August 202301 September 2023
EU/EEA students01 May 202301 September 2023
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202301 September 2023

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
language test

Additional requirements English: minimum requirement of TOEFL iBT 100 (with a minimum of 25 on writing skills), or IELTS 7 (with a minimum of 6.5 on all items). Cambridge C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a minimum score of 185.

previous education

A Bachelor diploma in the field of:

  • Language and Culture Studies
  • Linguistics
  • Other Arts degrees (admission interview required)
  • Social sciences (admission interview required)

Students who have a bachelor's degree from a university in the Netherlands are eligible for enrollment if they have completed modules in linguistics as part of their degree.

These students can enrol in Studielink.nl and then get in touch with us to receive an admission letter. This admission letter must be taken to the Student Desk of the Faculty of Arts (https://www.rug.nl/let/onze-faculteit/contact/) where a Declaration of Admissions to Final Exams (VTAE) must be filled in to complete the enrolment.

Students from other backgrounds (such as other Arts degrees, or degrees in the Social Sciences or Law) are also very welcome to apply to the programme. Please get in touch with the programme coordinator to determine whether you need to complete a pre-master programme before enrolling.

other admission requirements

To assess whether your educational/academic background meets the specific programme requirements, we will consider the level and curriculum of your previous studies. This evaluation is carried out by our Admissions Office and the Admissions Board.

Registration procedure

Note: it's not possible to start in February. For more information, please contact the study advisor.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students15 August 202301 September 2023
EU/EEA students01 May 202301 September 2023
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202301 September 2023
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2022-2023€ 2209full-time
non-EU/EEA2022-2023€ 14570full-time

Practical information for:

After your studies

Job prospects

Upon graduation students hold a (60 ECTS) MA degree in Linguistics with a track in Multilingualism from the University of Groningen. A student's career after that depends on the kind of person they are. The field of multilingualism is open for enterprising minds. Being one of the main challenges in a globalizing world, multilingualism creates many issues, situations and problems that can be solved only by experts.

Language is central to studying human behavior and activities. A degree in Linguistics can therefore also see you into a career in related fields such psychology, social-, computer- or education sciences. Many of the skills a Linguistics MA teaches are transferable. You will probably find that your analytical competence, ability to write, and capacity to solve problems will significantly improve after completing an MA degree.

We encourage our students to complete a 10 EC internship in a field of their interest. In the first term of the MA, a career event is organised to give students information and resources to realise their internship.

Job examples

With your MA-degree you could become a diversity manager, policy consultant, or an advisor to (inter)national governmental organizations and NGOs. You could also become an expert on dealing with multilingualism in education and companies, or on advising government agencies on language policies. You may also choose to pursue a career as lecturer or researcher in higher education.

Through a combination of a research-driven approach and knowledge of applying theory to real life situations, our programme prepares students for the following jobs:

Job examples

  • Translation expert
  • Policy maker/advisor
  • Diversity manager
  • Project manager
  • Lecturer at a University (of applied sciences)
  • Consultant
  • Teaching specialist
  • Researcher
  • Civil servant
  • Communication specialist
  • Publisher
  • Technical Writing expert
  • Copywriter
Research

The Multilingualism Laboratory

The Dutch northern provinces carry a long tradition of research into multilingualism, especially the Fryslan province. These regions have been a multilingual area for centuries, where closely related endogenous languages and language varieties co-exist with exogenous varieties like English, German and Low-Saxon. Since the 1960s many immigrant languages, mainly belonging to different language families, have been added to this repertoire. The standardisation and official recognition of Frisian as a national language have resulted in a rather extensive infrastructure of language research, for instance on the fields of cultural heritage, education and language policy. Thus, Fryslân and the other northern provinces of the Netherlands offer an excellent natural setting for conducting ground-breaking multidisciplinary research on multilingualism.

We believe that a multidisciplinary approach is the only answer to the many questions multilingualism confronts us with. That is why our research groups are encouraged to closely collaborate and inspire each other, fueling innovative solutions, recommendations, and policy advice. By combining approaches from different backgrounds, (fundamental) research on multilingualism becomes truly innovative, able to combine societal needs with scientific questions.

Research areas

The research on multilingualism innovatively combines cognitive, sociological and technological approaches to language in a natural setting. Research areas are:

Language, Culture and Society

Investigating the complex relationships of globalization, migration and expressions of linguistic and cultural identity in multilingual contexts to ensure an open, democratic and fair society.

Language, Cognition, and Variation

Investigating language processing in the individual’s mind in combination with language variation in a multilingual society, and its consequences for language change and language learning, with the intention to develop new techniques to facilitate language learning.

Language, Equity and Social Justice

Investigating how language in societies, schools or organisations can contribute to equity, peace and social justice and how forms of linguistic discrimination (linguicism, accentism or racism) can lead to inequity.

Apply nowBrochureEventsContact

Contact

  • Ask Your Question Here (please fill in this contact form, we will answer you as soon as possible.)
  • Dr. Sjoerd-jeroen Moenandar (Course co-ordinator)
    Email: multilingualism rug.nl
  • Hieke Hoekstra (Study Advisor)
    Email: h.hoekstra rug.nl
  • Albert Everaarts (Study Advisor)
    Email: a.everaarts rug.nl
  • Zhonghe Tang (Student Ambassador)
  • Admission Office (Contact form)
  • 
						Testimonial of Sophie Gruhn

    In the future I would like to develop language tests and educational material for multilingual children

    – Sophie Gruhn
    Read more

    Multilingualism is a very recent development in our society and it is no longer exceptional to speak several languages. We need to make adaptations in the field of language policy and education, we need to better protect language minorities, and we need new research about language change and variation. These are just a few examples of the fields you can specialize in during this Master's track.

    I chose to do a Master’s track abroad because I wanted to seize the opportunity get to know another language and culture, as well as to improve my English. This all adds up to quite an advantage if you want to work in the field of multilingualism, especially if you live and study in a bilingual area as in Friesland.

    One of the course units I’m following this semester is Language Minorities: The Case of Frisian. This course unit is a bit different in that every week we have an excursion and some practical work to do. For example, we conducted a survey at the NHL in Leeuwarden and asked students about their attitudes towards Frisian, and another time we analysed the distribution of different languages in a street in Leeuwarden.

    One of the best things about the programme is that you can combine your thesis with a placement, which gives you the chance to make an initial connection with the companies you would like to work with after your studies.

    Close
  • 
						Testimonial of  Jurand Haveman

    “The program is unique in its kind.”

    – Jurand Haveman
    Read more

    This study focuses especially on multilingualism from a social perspective such as linguistic minorities, language change, contact linguistics and language policy and planning. Next to this, I chose this study as it focuses more on the practical sides. There are excursions to events and institutions that deal with multilingual settings and in these excursions you get to experience in which ways multiple languages are used.

    I chose to do this study as I think the program is unique in its kind. The program takes place in Leeuwarden, a bilingual province with multilingual practices. I think the master is challenging as it makes you think about multilingualism in different perspectives. I would say it is a full-time study as the pace of studying is quite high. I certainly study around 40 hours per week. However, I do not mind the workload that much as I really like the topics that we discuss in class. The program of the first semester is very fixed with the planned excursions and the weekly classes. The second semester will consist of your internship or another course at the RUG and your Master’s thesis.

    Close
  • 
						Testimonial of Sibrecht Veenstra

    I chose the MA Multilingualism as it offered a wide variety of courses that allow you to zoom in on a specific group but also to see multilingualism in a broader picture

    – Sibrecht Veenstra
    Read more

    I chose the MA Multilingualism as it offered a wide variety of courses that allow you to zoom in on a specific group but also to see multilingualism in a broader picture. The MA Multilingualism has allowed me to study the bilingual province of Fryslân that I grew up in and has sparked my interest in Frisian and multilingualism in education. I have been fortunate enough to work on various projects to enhance the position of Frisian and multilingualism in education. To further my knowledge I started a second masters degree to get my teaching certificate for Frisian!

    Close
  • 
						Testimonial of Jordi Jager

    This programme is a one of a kind programme which blends many languages and cultures into one unique track

    – Jordi Jager
    Read more

    This programme is a one of a kind programme which blends many languages and cultures into one unique track. I chose this study after having finished my BA in European Languages and Cultures. Since I chose courses on German, Spanish and linguistics in the BA, I figured doing the MA Multilingualism was the perfect next step. I was not disappointed.

    For me, the whole experience was learning new people, new points of view and new cultures. You learn to see things from many different angles. Alongside the very interesting material and discussions on languages, the thing I remember the most was the fun and warm environment in which the courses were taught. If you are into languages and cultures, this programme is definitely for you. It is a study that makes you think for yourself, by making you do assignments in the field and writing papers on interesting topics. You will learn to develop your own attitude towards language and language policies.

    For me, this has ultimately given me a great job in the field of language research. After being able to do an internship with NHL Stenden Hogeschool, I now get to use Dutch, English, German and even my own dialect Drents on a daily basis, and get paid doing it. How great is that! Keeping that in mind, I see the friends I made while doing this study spread out into a very diverse field of work. This MA does not train you to be good at one specific job, but instead gives you the skills and tools to be able to work in a very broad spectrum within the field of language policy and linguistics.

    Close

University of Groningen Orange Tulip Scholarship/Talent Grant Faculty of Arts

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.

Research Master

Are you interested in a research oriented career? Please also check our Research Master's Programme of Linguistics.

Read more

Study associations

Tw!st

TW!ST is the study association for the students of Linguistics at the University of Groningen. By organizing both study related and non-study related activities, TW!ST aims to unite its students in a different way than only in a study related setting. Study related activities include company visits, symposia, and other lectures. Non-study related activities include activities such as socials, an annual gala and pub quizzes.
https://twistgroningen.nl/
Read more
Study support

If you have any questions or doubts about your studies, you can always contact the study advisor. He or she knows all the ins and outs of the program and personal planning. Study advisors are impartial and everything that is discussed is treated confidentially. They can also help you find the right institutions and student desks for your problems.