Speech & Language Processing
The science and technology involved are fundamental to the understanding and remediation of disordered speech. The science of speech is thus at the intersection of many disciplines, particularly linguistics, psychology, acoustics, and engineering.
Language processing, in parallel, deals with computational theories of grammar and meaning, and provides access to fundamentals of linguistics as a science and as an engineering discipline. As a science, it is concerned with the fact that language is used as a medium for thought as well as for communication. As an engineering discipline, it is concerned with tools that work: predictive text in telephones, automated personal assistants, web search, and so on. The fact that you are reading this sentence entails that you have taken advantage of one or more language technologies; it would not be visible to you otherwise. The fact that you understand this sentence (or any sentence) begs all of the questions of cognitive science such as what "meanings" are and how people reason with them.
Our students come from many backgrounds. Some have a background in language study, some have an interest in clinical speech and language analysis, some have a background in psychology, computer science or engineering. In general, they are people who have an analytical bent (they may be interested in how dialects differ, they may love crossword puzzles or find legal reasoning entertaining) and wish to know more about what makes human language work.
Applicants should have a good honours degree (at least an upper second or equivalent; GPA of at least 3.2). Previous knowledge of applied linguistics is not a requirement. Normally only graduates with language teaching experience are admitted to the course in Applied Linguistics.
Applicants whose first language is not English and who have not been educated through the medium of English must meet the College's requirements for English-language proficiency, i.e. the minimum acceptable IELTS score is 6.5. For this course, no individual IELTS band can be below 6 (or the minimum equivalents in other approved English language proficiency tests listed on the College website).
Students whose first language is not English are encouraged to attend our pre-sessional Summer programme to prepare them for postgraduate study in Ireland.
Applicants must provide a Personal Statement explaining their motivation in applying for their chosen course(s).
Closing Date: 30th June 2023
DPTLS-SLPR-1F09: 1 Year Full Time
DPTLS-SLPR-1P09: 2 years Part Time
Next Intake: September 2020
Post Course Info
Our alumni have followed various career paths, with many opting to pursue research at a higher level through the Ph.D., in CLCS (e.g., becoming involved in research projects in the Phonetics and Speech Lab), with the computational linguists in TCD's School of Computer Science and Statistics, and in other leading institutions, internationally. Some have also used this course as a foundation to enter Speech Therapy programmes in Ireland and abroad.