Linguistics is the study of how language works - how it is structured, used and understood. This degree allows you to build your understanding of the ways in which humans communicate and combine it with skills in a major world language.
If you have an A-level in French, you'll be able to build your language skills through core modules, and you'll also be introduced to the main principles of linguistics. But because our School of Languages, Cultures and Societies is so large and diverse, we can offer flexible degrees with a wide range of optional modules so you can follow the topics that interest you.
You could study topics such as language acquisition, discourse analysis, or phonetics - the study of how speech is physically produced - alongside linguistic variation in Francophone countries, translation or interpreting. You could take an even broader approach and explore aspects of Francophone culture, from medieval French literature to contemporary French political issues.
Leeds has some fantastic resources for the study of linguistics, phonetics and languages. We have a recording studio and fully-equipped phonetics lab for acoustic and articulatory speech analysis, as well as a linguistics lab including eye-tracking equipment and other resources to help with experimental research. We encourage all of our students to make use of these facilities for module projects or dissertations, giving you valuable experience of different types of research.
Our fully-equipped Language Centre houses digital language labs, audio/video practice booths and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL). There's also an extensive lending library of foreign films and newspapers as well as other on-demand resources. Interpreter Training Suites offer you the chance to explore a career in interpreting, and our Electronic Resource Information Centre houses specialised computing facilities to support translation studies.
A joint honours degree allows you to study the same core topics as students on each single honours course, but you'll take fewer optional and discovery modules so you can fit in both subjects.
In your first year you'll build a solid knowledge base, consolidating your language skills while learning about key theories and concepts in linguistics. You'll also study one of our Cornerstone modules, which help you bring together different aspects of your two subjects.
Once you've developed this foundation, you'll study topics like syntax and phonetics in the following year, as well as continuing to develop your spoken and written French. You'll also be able to choose from a range of optional modules in each subject, from Francophone Africa and the Caribbean to the links between language and gender and the causes of language death. But the key element will be preparation for the following year, when you'll work or study in a Francophone country to sharpen your language skills and immerse yourself in the local culture.
When you return to Leeds, you'll have even greater choice in your optional modules across the full range of research interests in both subjects at the University. You'll also take advanced language classes to refine your spoken and written French, and you'll apply the skills and knowledge you've gained to an independently researched dissertation on a topic of your choice.
These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
Entry requirements, fees and applying
A-level: AAB including A in French.
A Joint Honours degree in French and Linguistics gives you a deep understanding of how humans communicate, as well as proficiency in a major world language. It will also equip you with valuable skills in different areas that are attractive to employers.
Because linguistics crosses both the arts and sciences, you'll have experience of qualitative and quantitative research methods, and you'll be confident researching topics independently. You'll also be able to analyse information from a range of sources and present and defend your views. Because you've juggled two different subjects you'll have good organisational skills, and you'll be able to work within a team.
Graduates have gone on to succeed in a variety of careers including journalism, law, advertising and marketing, education, publishing and the civil service. Others have pursued further training or postgraduate study in translation or interpreting or speech and language therapy.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That's one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
Study abroad and work placements
You'll spend your third year in France or another Francophone country, immersing yourself in local culture and cultivating your language skills.
We have partnerships with a number of universities in the region where you could study, or you could undertake a work placement. You could even work as a language assistant in a school under the British Council's programme.
Whatever you choose to do, you'll gain a new insight into a French-speaking society as well as valuable experience of adapting to another culture. If you choose to work during your time there, you'll also return with work experience to increase your appeal to employers. For many of our students, it's the real highlight of their course.
Read more about Residence Abroad in French