• Please note that the application period for Winter 2023 has closed
  • Fall 2023 application deadline for international students is January 15, 2023 (or earlier, if specified by the department below)
  • Fall 2023 application deadline for Canadian students varies by department (see below)



  • Department of Linguistics
  • 1085 Dr. Penfield Avenue
  • Montreal QC H3A 1A7
  • Canada
  • Telephone: 514-398-4222
  • Email: gradprogram.linguistics [at]
  • Website:

About Linguistics

The aim of McGill's Linguistics graduate program is to train independent researchers to work in the diverse areas of Linguistics using a range of methods. We have specific expertise and strength in:

  • phonetics
  • phonology
  • morphology
  • syntax
  • semantics
  • pragmatics
  • prosody
  • language acquisition
  • computational/quantitative linguistics
  • artificial intelligence and machine learning
  • variation and change
  • linguistic fieldwork and documentation
  • experimental methods

Students have access to a rich research landscape in cognitive science; for example, many members of the Department are associated with the Centre for Research on Brain, Language and Music (CRBLM) or Mila - Quebec AI Institute. The Department has several labs for conducting research including rooms for elicitation, running experiments including in sound booths and with an eye-tracker, and accessing high performance computing infrastructure. Members of the Department also have access to other facilities through the CRBLM.

We normally fund all full-time graduate students who maintain strong academic records; our funding package covers living expenses, tuition, and fees. M.A. students are funded for one year and eight months, and Ph.D. students for five years.

Master of Arts (M.A.) Linguistics (Thesis) (45 credits)

The M.A. in Linguistics Thesis program provides training in the fundamentals of theoretical and experimental linguistics. The program culminates in the preparation of a thesis, which is written under the direction of a supervisory committee, and which is expected to report on original research outcomes of publishable quality

Master of Arts (M.A.) Linguistics (Non-Thesis) (45 credits)

The M.A. (Non-Thesis) involves intensive coursework in year 1, followed by additional coursework and completion of a major research paper in year 2. This program is intended for students who wish to gain coursework and research experience in Linguistics beyond the B.A. level. After completion of the M.A., students may choose to continue on to a Ph.D. or pursue a career in a related field.

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Linguistics

The Ph.D. degree involves intensive coursework in year 1, additional coursework and completion of two evaluation papers in years 2 and 3, and thesis research and writing in years 4 and 5. This program is principally intended for students who wish to pursue a career in academia.

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Linguistics: Language Acquisition

The Language Acquisition Program (LAP) is a cross-disciplinary option available to Ph.D. students in Communication Sciences and Disorders, Linguistics, Psychology, and Second Language Education who intend to pursue graduate studies, including writing their thesis, in language acquisition. In addition to meeting the degree requirements for Linguistics, students must complete four interdisciplinary LAP seminars, two graduate-level courses in language acquisition (one from outside the student’s home department), a course in statistics, and they must have a faculty member from outside their home department on their thesis committee. Information about this option is available from the Department and at

Taken from Programs, Courses and University Regulations 2022-2023 (last updated Feb. 7, 2022).

Linguistics Admission Requirements and Application Procedures

Admission Requirements

Applicants to the M.A. or Ph.D. should have completed a B.A. with a specialization in linguistics. Applications are also invited from students with a background in other disciplines. Applicants showing strong evidence for truly outstanding potential but lacking a background in linguistics may be considered for admission to a Qualifying Year (QY).

English Language Proficiency

For graduate applicants whose mother tongue is not English, and who have not completed an undergraduate or graduate degree from a recognised Canadian or American (English or French) institution or from a recognized foreign institution where English is the language of instruction, documented proof of English proficiency is required prior to admission. For a list of acceptable test scores and minimum requirements, visit

Application Procedures

McGill’s online application form for graduate program candidates is available at

See University Regulations & Resources > Graduate > Graduate Admissions and Application Procedures > Application Procedures for detailed application procedures.

Applicants are urged to read detailed information on application procedures on the Department of Linguistics' website.

Additional Requirements

The items and clarifications below are additional requirements set by this department:

  • Statement of Research Interests
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Writing Sample

Application Dates and Deadlines

Application opening dates are set by Enrolment Services in consultation with Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (GPS), while application deadlines are set by the Linguistics Department and may be revised at any time. Applicants must verify all deadlines and documentation requirements well in advance on the appropriate McGill departmental website; please consult the list at

  Application Opening Dates Application Deadlines
  All Applicants Non-Canadian citizens (incl. Special, Visiting & Exchange) Canadian citizens/Perm. residents of Canada (incl. Special, Visiting & Exchange) Current McGill Students (any citizenship)
Fall Term: Sept. 15 Dec. 10 Dec. 10 Dec. 10
Winter Term: N/A N/A N/A N/A
Summer Term: N/A N/A N/A N/A

Admission to graduate studies is competitive; accordingly, late and/or incomplete applications are considered only as time and space permit.

Taken from Programs, Courses and University Regulations 2022-2023 (last updated Feb. 7, 2022).
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