Linguistics in all Honour Schools including Linguistics

Candidates offering Linguistics papers in any Honour School must conform to the General Regulations below, and to those for their particular school, as specified elsewhere.

Subjects in Linguistics

The subjects in Linguistics are specified below. Paper A will be examined by three-hour examination. The mode of assessment for B1-6 and F will be specified in the Faculty Handbook.

  • A General Linguistics

  • B1 Phonetics and Phonology

  • B2 Syntax

  • B3 Semantics

  • B4 Psycholinguistics

  • B5 Sociolinguistics

  • B6 Historical Linguistics

  • C Linguistic Project

  • D Thesis

  • E1 Linguistic Studies I (=Paper IV of the Honour School of Modern Languages)

  • E2 Linguistic Studies II (=Paper V of the Honour School of Modern Languages)

  • F A Special Subject in Linguistics

[For students starting before MT 2015: Paper A. General Linguistics, Old Format 

Candidates will be required to show knowledge of analytic techniques and problems in contemporary syntax and semantic theory, phonetics, and phonology, and their relation to issues of linguistic variation, language acquisition, and language change.]

[For students starting from MT 2015: Paper A. General Linguistics, New Format

Candidates will be required to show knowledge of key ideas in linguistics, and awareness of their application in given areas of linguistics and of their impact on the way linguistics as a discipline has developed.]

Linguistic Project

The Linguistic Project will consist of a project report of between 8,000 and 10,000 words. Two copies of the project should be submitted by hand to the Examination Schools and addressed to the Chair of Examiners in the candidate’s Honour School, by noon on the Friday of the ninth week of Hilary Term in the year of the examination, together with a statement, sent under separate cover, certifying that the project is the candidate's own work and has not already been submitted, either wholly or substantially, for a degree in this university or elsewhere. A third copy must be retained by the candidate.

Not later than the Wednesday of the second week of the Michaelmas Full Term preceding the examination, candidates proposing to offer a Linguistic Project must submit, through their college, to the Director of Undergraduate Studies of the Faculty of Linguistics, Philology and Phonetics (on a form obtainable from the Linguistics Faculty Office) a statement of their name, college, the Honour School they intend to offer, the academic year in which they intend to take the examination, and the title of the proposed project together with:

  • (a) a statement of approximately fifty words of how the subject is to be treated,

  • (b) a statement signed by a supervisor or tutor that he or she considers the subject suitable, and suggesting a person or persons who might be invited to be an examiner or an assessor (the Board will not approve a title unless it is satisfied that a suitably qualified examiner or assessor based in Oxford will be available),

  • (c) a statement by a college tutor that he or she approves the candidate's application, and

  • (d) confirmation that relevant CUREC approval was or will be obtained before work with human subjects has begun.

One complete draft of the Linguistic Project may be read and commented on by the supervisor.

The Linguistic Project must be typed in double-spacing on A4 paper, and must be bound or held firmly in a stiff cover. All quotations, whether direct or indirect, from primary or secondary sources must be explicitly acknowledged. The use of unacknowledged quotations will be penalized. The word count is exclusive of the footnotes and the bibliography. Extensive textual material may be placed in an appendix and need not be included in the word limit. An abstract or summary need not be included.

Thesis

  • 1. Candidates may offer a Thesis, subject to the following provisions:

    • (i) The subject of every thesis shall, to the satisfaction of the Board of the Faculty, fall within the scope of Linguistics.

    • (ii) The subject of a thesis may, but need not, overlap any subject on which the candidate offers a paper, but candidates should avoid repetition of material presented in the extended essay in other parts of the examination.

    • (iii) Not later than the Wednesday of the second week of the Michaelmas Full Term preceding the examination, candidates proposing to offer a thesis must submit, through their college, to the Director of Undergraduate Studies of the Faculty of Linguistics, Philology and Phonetics (on a form obtainable from the Linguistics Faculty Office) a statement of their name, college, the Honour School they intend to offer, the academic year in which they intend to take the examination, and the title of the proposed thesis together with (a) a statement of approximately fifty words of how the subject is to be treated, (b) a statement signed by a supervisor or tutor, preferably in the field of study with which the thesis is concerned, that he or she considers the subject suitable, and suggesting a person or persons who might be invited to be an examiner or an assessor (the Board will not approve a title unless it is satisfied that a suitably qualified examiner or assessor based in Oxford will be available), (c) a statement by a college tutor that he or she approves the candidate's application, and (d) confirmation that relevant CUREC approval, if necessary, was or will have been obtained before work with human subjects has begun.

    • (iv) The Board of the Faculty will decide by the end of the third week of the Michaelmas Full Term preceding the examination whether the candidate has permission to offer a thesis. Permission may be granted on the condition that the candidate agrees to amend details of the title to the satisfaction of the Board, and submits the required amendments to the Faculty Office for the Board's approval by Friday of the sixth week of the Michaelmas Full Term preceding the examination. If the proposed title is approved, this will be notified by the Administration and Faculty Office, together with any conditions attached to the approval, to the candidate and to the Chair of the Examiners for the candidate’s Honour School.

    • (v) A candidate may seek approval after Friday of the sixth week of the Michaelmas Full Term preceding the examination for an amendment of detail in an approved title, by application to the Faculty Office. The Chair of the Examiners and the Chair of the Board, acting together, will decide whether or not a proposed amendment shall be approved.

  • 2.  Every thesis must be the candidate’s own work. Tutors may, however, discuss with candidates the proposed field of study, the sources available, and the method of presentation. Tutors may also read and comment on a first draft. All quotations, whether direct or indirect, from primary or secondary sources must be explicitly acknowledged. The use of unacknowledged quotations will be penalized. Candidates must sign a certificate stating that the thesis is their own work and this certificate must be sent at the same time as the thesis, but under separate cover, to the Examination Schools, Oxford, addressed to the Chair of the Examiners in the candidate’s Honour School.

  • 3. No thesis shall be ineligible because it has been submitted, in whole or in part, for any scholarship or prize in this university.

  • 4. Candidates shall present a one-page summary of the arguments at the beginning of their thesis. Theses shall be in the range 10,000-12,000 words (exclusive of the footnotes, the bibliography, any appendices, and summary). No person or body shall have authority to permit the limit of 12,000 words to be exceeded, except that, in the case of a commentary on a text, and at the discretion of the Chair of the Examiners, any substantial quoting of that text need not be included in the word limit. The examiners will not take account of such parts of an essay as are beyond these limits. There must be a select bibliography, listing all primary and secondary sources cited in the thesis, and full details must be given of all citations at the end of the thesis. All theses must be typed in double-spacing on A4 paper, and must be bound or held firmly in a stiff cover. Two copies must be submitted to the Chair of the Examiners, and a third copy must be retained by the candidate.

  • 5. The candidate shall submit two copies of the thesis, identified by the candidate's examination number only, not later than noon on Friday of the week before the Trinity Full Term of the examination, to the Examination Schools, Oxford, addressed to the Chair of the Examiners in the candidate's Honour School.

Special Subjects

Special Subjects available in Linguistics will be published in the Gazette and on-line by the beginning of the fifth week of the Trinity Term preceding the year of examination. Candidates in the Joint Schools involving Linguistics may offer any of the special subjects for paper XII in the Honour School of Modern Languages, provided they are marked with the Linguistics identifier L.

The method of assessment for each subject will be published in the Gazette and on-line by the beginning of the fifth week of the Trinity Term preceding the year of examination, according to the following key:

  • A: Three-hour unseen written paper. N.B. For the option paper in Phonetics and Phonology, candidates must also offer either a 30 minute Phonetics Transcription aural test or a Laboratory Report of a Phonetics experiment.

  • B: An essay or portfolio of essays (the number of essays required to be shown in parentheses) aggregating to approximately 6,000 words and not exceeding 8,000 words, to be submitted by hand to the Examinations Schools, High Street, Oxford by noon on the Friday of the ninth week of Hilary Term in the year of the examination, together with a statement certifying that the essay(s) are the candidate's own work and that they have not already been submitted, either wholly or substantially, for a degree in this university or elsewhere.

  • C: An essay or portfolio of essays (the number of essays required to be shown in parentheses) aggregating to approximately 6,000 words and not exceeding 8,000 words written as answers to an examination paper to be collected from the Examination Schools, and signed for by candidates, on the Friday of the fifth week of the Hilary Term before the examination. Completed essay(s) should be submitted by hand to the Examination Schools by noon on the Friday of the ninth week of Hilary Term in the year of the examination, together with a statement certifying that the essay(s) are the candidate's own work and that they have not already been submitted, either wholly or substantially, for a degree in this university or elsewhere.

General Regulations

Candidates in the Honour School of Psychology, Philosophy, and Linguistics may offer paper E1 or E2 only with the agreement of the Board of the Faculty of Linguistics, Philology, and Phonetics.

No candidate may offer more than one special subject F. Candidates may not be permitted to offer certain special subjects in combination with certain other subjects, or may be permitted to do so only on condition that in the papers on the other subjects they will not be permitted to answer certain questions.

Regulations for Particular Honour Schools

Psychology, Philosophy, and Linguistics

Candidates may take at most five subjects in Linguistics. All candidates must take eight subjects in total. Candidates may only take subjects in Psychology if they offer Psychology Parts I and II.

Candidates may take no more than one paper from group F.

All candidates in Linguistics must take paper A.

Candidates who take two subjects in Linguistics must take paper A and one of papers B1–B6.

Candidates who take three subjects in Linguistics must take (1) paper A, (2) one of papers B1, B2, B3, and (3) one of papers B1-6, C, D, F.

Candidates who take four subjects in Linguistics must take (1) paper A, (2) one of papers B1, B2, B3, and (3) two of papers B1-6, C or D, E1 or E2, F.

Candidates who take five subjects in Linguistics must take (1) paper A, (2) one of papers B1, B2, B3, and (3) three of papers B1-6, C, D, E1 or E2, F.