M.Sc. IECL - Int MSc / PhD Programme for Experimental & Clinical Linguistics

University of Potsdam

Application deadline: January 15
Tuition fee:
  • € 480 / Year (EEA)
  • € 480 / Year (Non-EEA)
Start date: October  2015, April  2016
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time

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The International Programme for Experimental and Clinical Linguistics (IECL) constitutes the first integrated and structured M.Sc./Ph.D. programme at the University of Potsdam. The university thus provides a new concept of training which has the aim of combining fundamental linguistic knowledge and multidisciplinary research with modern and internationally accepted university standards.

Established at the Department of Linguistics, the IECL is a section of the Excellence Center of Cognitive Sciences and is characterised by an intensive, research-orientated training of high international standard in experimental and clinical linguistics.

In addition to preparing students for careers in scientific research, one of the priorities of the programme is to bring together students from around the world who are united by a common interest in understanding the cognitive mechanisms that underlie human language processing and production.

The IECL programme is primarily aimed at advanced, highly-qualified students who have completed a Bachelor's programme and who desire to deepen and expand their knowledge, skills and abilities. This includes the theoretical, methodological and experimental fundamentals inherent to scientific research and therewith will qualify students to work in research and teaching-orientated fields.


Structure of the Programme
The IECL programme consists of an initial common segment beginning in the summer term and a second individual segment for M.Sc. and doctoral candidates.

In the common first year, all students participate in theoretical and empirical course offerings taught in English. Thereafter, two separate segments are offered. Depending on the grades achieved in the first year, either a M.Sc. degree can be completed through the writing of a Masters thesis (to be completed within a six-month period) or the three-year Ph.D. programme can begin immediately upon completion of the common programme.

As a rule, completion of the Masters programme takes one and a half years, and completion of the Ph.D. programme takes four years.

The 1st segment

The common first segment consists of an experimental clinical training in participating research laboratories, combined with in-depth lectures, tutorials and seminars to provide students with a sound theoretical background. In order to successfully complete this segment of the programme, a minimum of 60 ECTS credit points must be acquired in the following courses:

* Lecture (Neuro-/Psycholinguistics) and accompanying tutorial
* Seminars from the field of neuro-/ psycholinguistics
* Block courses in the Potsdam Graduate School (PoGS) and complementary subject-specific courses (Methods and Statistics, Scientific Writing)
* Clinical or laboratory research practicum

The 2nd segment Masters Programme

Students admitted to the Masters segment of the programme will begin a thesis project based on experimental research. The Masters thesis (written in English) must be finished within a six-month period. Moreover, each student will present his/her project in a Masters colloquium.

The 2nd segment Ph.D. Programme

During the doctoral segment, students primarily carry out a comprehensive scientific research project, which should be completed within three years. Every six months the student must present the progress of the dissertation in the form of written reports or oral presentations. The dissertation has to be written in English and defended publicly.

To ensure the continuation of an interdisciplinary education, special courses, colloquia and seminars are regularly offered. Additionally students must acquire credit points in the soft skills module by presenting their own research results at a scientific meeting and by taking over responsibilities in scientific research management, in the acquisition of research financing or by teaching or tutoring under supervision.

Moreover, students are expected to take part in the self-management of the IECL programme, such as in the organisation of the Ph.D. colloquium, co-operation in the planning and preparation of a conference, in tutoring of students in the first common segment or in marketing the programme.


Admission requirements for the initial M.Sc. segment of the programme:

* minimal prerequisite is at least a seven-semester Bachelors degree (or the equivalent of 210 cp) in psycho-, patho- or neurolinguistics or another related field. Applicants holding a Bachelors degree completed with 180 cp can be admitted with additional requirements.
* Grade: A or B
* lab courses and participation in the programme require extensive independent study

Admission requirements for the immediate entry into the Ph.D. segment of the programme:

* University degree: Diploma, Master, Magister after at least 4.5 years of study (or 270 cp) in a relevant field
* Grade: A or B


* Bachelors degree after a minimum of 3.5 years (with a minimum of 210 cp) in an experimental neurocognitive area
* Outstanding grade (A)
* Excellent references

Applicants who are not native speakers of English should demonstrate an adequate competence of the English language with acceptable results from an internationally recognised test (e.g. TOEFL-CBT >213, IELTS >7; cf. study regulations). Higher education study completed in English is also acceptable. In this case, applicants need to attach an official statement (signed by an official of the college or university, e.g. the dean's or registrar's office) indicating that English was the medium of instruction in the programme of study.

English Language Requirements

IELTS band: 7
TOEFL paper-based test score : 550
TOEFL iBT® test: 79


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