Methods for Master's Students in Language and Linguistics

Postgraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

This course introduces empirical methods in linguistics and language studies, e.g. the collection, construction and use of text corpora. The methods introduced can vary from semester to semester, e.g. field methods and work with informants, construction and use of questionnaires, and statistical methods which are relevant for processing corpus data and informant data. This course also provides knowledge and skills in structuring text and language use for papers in linguistics and language studies.

Learning Outcomes


The candidate is able to

  • describe and discuss important methodological foundations in linguistics;
  • describe important terms and procedures in methods.


The candidate is able to

  • assess and compare methods in linguistics, e.g. fieldwork and corpus methods;
  • apply methods and concepts to practical research on language;
  • structure a text with correct genre, terminology, citations and argumentation.

General competence

The candidate is able to

  • use linguistic and general scientific argumentation;
  • have a critical perspective on one's own and others' methods;
  • discuss common methodological questions;
  • use a writing style and text elements which are appropriate for the stylistic traditions in the languages of science

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Semester of Instruction


Place of Instruction

Required Previous Knowledge
Recommended Previous Knowledge
A bachelor degree with a specialization in linguistics or language studies provides the most suitable starting point.
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
LINGMET (15 credits), LING311 (10 credits), DASP307 (5 credits)
Access to the Course
Open to all who have been admitted to one of the Master's programmes in linguistics, foreign languages or nordic studies.
Teaching and learning methods
Lectures, seminars and practical exercises. Normally, teachers from linguistics and various language related programs will be responsible for teaching.
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

Students must complete the following during the course:

  1. one obligatory assignment;
  2. a presentation of the topic of the term paper, consisting of a title, motivation of method and goals and a preliminary literature list. The form of the presentation will be explained in the beginning of the semester.

Obligatory assignments must be approved before one can take the exam in the subject.

Forms of Assessment

Term paper of about 3000 words, not including references, appendices with data etc.

The exam assignment will be given in the language of instruction in the course.
The exam can be submitted in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading Scale
Assessment Semester
Reading List
The reading list may consist in part of common reading material and in part of individual material chosen in consultation with the student's own department and in relation to the language studied by the student. The common literature list is about 400 pages and includes introductions to linguistic methods and illustrating articles.
Course Evaluation
Course evaluation will be conducted in accordance with the University of Bergen's quality assurance system.
Examination Support Material
Course Administrator
Department of Linguistic, Literary and Aesthetic Studies