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Linguistics (PhD)

In this PhD program, you’ll study linguistics, building a broad and deep understanding of language. You’ll work under our faculty to tackle cutting-edge questions. We offer research specialization in theoretical linguistics, applied linguistics and Indigenous language revitalization.

This program will give you concrete skills in research and analysis via your coursework in the required phonology and syntax courses plus your electives. You'll also complete a candidacy requirement. This degree culminates with a doctoral dissertation.

Expected length Project and/or thesis Course-based
4 years Yes No

Quick facts

Program options:
Study options:
Full-time study
Program delivery:
Dynamic learning:
Co-op optional


Students in this program will:

  • appreciate the complexity of linguistic representation in the human mind, and how this representation is shaped, as we acquire and use language.
  • develop a solid grounding in core areas of linguistics: phonology and syntax
  • have an opportunity to further explore phonology and syntax as well as phonetics, morphology, sociolinguistics, language documentation and acquisition, or Indigenous language revitalization as research areas
  • develop an ability to articulate an appreciation for the richness and diversity of languages
  • develop skills in a variety of research methodologies and their use in linguistics
  • develop skills in describing, analyzing, explaining, interpreting, and evaluating various linguistic data and phenomena
  • develop an ability to contribute to the field of linguistics

Find a supervisor

PhD students must have a faculty member who serves as their academic supervisor. When you apply:

  • You must list a potential supervisor on your application.
  • This faculty member must agree to be your supervisor and recommend your admission.
  • Include an email from your supervisor with your application.

To find a supervisor, review the faculty contacts. When you’ve found a faculty member whose research complements your own, contact them by email.

Alexandra D'Arcy

Professor, Associate Dean Research, Humanities Variationist sociolinguistics

Hossein Nassaji

Professor, Graduate Advisor Applied linguistics

Hua Lin

Associate Professor Second language phonetics and phonology

John Archibald

Professor Second language phonology

Li-Shih Huang

Professor, Learning & Teaching Scholar-in-Residence, Undergraduate Advisor Applied linguistics

Martha McGinnis

Associate Professor, Chair Syntax, morphology

Sonya Bird

Associate Professor Phonetics, language revitalization

Suzanne Urbanczyk

Associate Professor, Advisor - Certificate in Indigenous Language Revitalization Phonology, morphology, language revitalization

Show me program details

Providing you accurate admission requirements, application deadlines, tuition fee estimates and scholarships depends on your situation. Tell us about yourself:

Ready to apply?

You can start your online application to UVic by creating a new profile or using an existing one.

Apply now    How to apply

Need help?

Contact Emmanuelle Guenette at

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