Objectives and competences

Cognitive Science and Language is an inter-university, interdisciplinary postgraduate programme combining master's degree and doctoral levels that responds to the need to overcome the academic barriers between the different areas of cognitive science. The programme places a particular focus on speech perception and language acquisition, the syntactic and semantic processing involved in speech, the relationship between semantics and cognition, the logical structure of language and the epistemic and conceptual foundations of language study, computational analysis of language, and the relationship between the different areas of cognitive science.

This master's degree offers interdisciplinary education in three key areas of cognitive science: psychology, linguistics and philosophy. The course consists of a common module of basic subjects, a specialization module covering specific topics from each of the three key areas, and a module comprising optional subjects. The goal of this degree is to give students the skills they will need to carry out a research project, which may be developed further under the doctoral programme and lead to the writing and defence of a doctoral thesis.

The three areas of specialization in both the master's degree and the doctoral programme are overseen by the best lecturers and researchers at each of the participating universities, and renowned international specialists are continually invited to participate as guest lecturers. This places the scientific education of the postgraduate programme in Cognitive Science and Language on a comparable level of quality to the leading postgraduate programmes in Europe, particularly in the interdisciplinary areas of cognitive science.

Basic information

TypeMaster's degree
Faculty or schoolFaculty of Philosophy
Branch of knowledge
  • Interdisciplinary
  • Philology, classical studies, translation and linguistics
  • Behavioural sciences and psychology
Mode of delivery
  • Face-to-face
Credits60
Number of places available40
Length of course1 academic year
Language(s) of instruction80 % English - 10 % Catalan - 10 % Spanish
Approximate price per credit27.67 euros per credit (82 euros for students who are not EU nationals and do not currently reside in Spain). Fees for the academic year 2023-2024
CoordinationWENDY ELVIRA GARCíA
E-mailmaster.ccil@ub.edu
Course detailsIndicators
Open pre-enrolmentNo
Open enrolmentNo
Lead to doctoral studiesYes
Admission for applicants not holding a degree qualificationNo
InteruniversityYes
Main universityUniversitat Barcelona
Universities
  • Universitat Barcelona
  • Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
  • Universitat Girona
  • Universitat Pompeu Fabra
  • Universitat Rovira i Virgili
Bridging coursesYes
Specializations
  • Cognitive Models of Language Processing
  • Grammatical Theory and Linguistic Processing
  • Logic and Philosophy

Objectives and competences

Objectives

The general objective of the master's degree in Cognitive Science and Language is to provide training to language researchers from three scientific perspectives: those of the linguist, the cognitive psychologist and the analytic philosopher. Interdisciplinary training in each of these areas will enable students to monitor and appraise new contributions in the other two areas.

Competences

Basic competences:
On completion of the degree, students will be able to:
  • Display a capacity for original thinking in the development and/or application of ideas in a research context.
  • Apply the knowledge acquired during the course to problem-solving in new or relatively unknown environments related to the specific field of study.
  • Integrate knowledge and tackle the complexity of formulating judgements based on incomplete or limited information, giving due consideration to the social and ethical responsibilities involved in applying knowledge and making judgements.
  • Present conclusions and the grounds on which they have been reached in a clear and concise manner.
  • Demonstrate the learning skills acquired to facilitate further learning requiring a more independent and self-directed approach.


General competences:
Successful students will also be able to:
  • Master the resources needed for research (languages of scientific interest, efficient information search, use of computer resources).
  • Display a capacity for the critical analysis of relevant scientific bibliography in a specific field of study and for the development of research work appropriate to the level demanded by the programme.


Specific competences:
With respect to the specific applications of their knowledge, students will be able to:
  • Show mastery of the principles and methods of linguistics, analytic philosophy and cognitive psychology, in order to apply them to the study of language, while displaying a capacity for critically evaluating the main contemporary contributions of these disciplines.
  • Describe linguistic phenomena clearly, capturing all of their complexity and using the necessary level of detail.
  • Display a capacity for extracting the logical form of arguments, evaluating their validity and identifying any fallacies or methodological errors, and make critical use of the methods for studying language appropriate to contemporary analytical philosophy (specialization in Logic and Philosophy).
  • Gather data and formulate analysis to solve problems in the areas of theoretical linguistics and computational linguistics (specialization in Grammatical Theory and Linguistic Processing).
  • Use and evaluate results obtained through the main exploration techniques in neuroscience, correctly design and carry out experimental research in cognitive science, and apply the statistical techniques needed to analyse the results correctly (specialization in Cognitive Processing Models).

Access and admission

Applicant profile and access requirements

Recommended applicant profile

Ideally, candidates will have prior training in one or more of the specializations (philosophy, psychology, linguistics) or in related disciplines (philology, translation and interpreting, humanities, biology, medicine, etc.) and a strong motivation to pursue further study in the area of cognitive science. Applicants must also have a good level of English (see below).

Access requirements and conditions

General requirements
In accordance with Article 16 of Royal Decree 1393/2007, of 29 October, students wishing to be admitted to a university master's degree must hold one of the following qualifications:

  • Official Spanish university degree.

  • A degree issued by a higher education institution within the European Higher Education Area framework that authorizes the holder to access university master's degree courses in the country of issue.

  • A qualification issued by an institution outside the framework of the European Higher Education Area. In this case, applicants must request homologation of the degree to its equivalent official Spanish university qualification or obtain express approval from the University of Barcelona, which will conduct a study of equivalence to ensure that the degree is of a comparable level to an official Spanish university qualification and that it grants access to university master's degree study in the country of issue. Admission shall not, in any case, imply that prior qualifications have been recognized as equivalent to a Spanish master's degree and does not confer recognition for any purposes other than that of admission to the master's degree course.

Specific requirements
  • Applicants should hold a bachelor's degree or equivalent undergraduate degree in psychology, philosophy, linguistics, translation and interpreting, or philology. Holders of a bachelor's degree or equivalent undergraduate degree in a related discipline (humanities, biology, medicine, computer science, mathematics, etc.) may be required to complete up to 30 credits of bridging subjects, at the discretion of the Admissions Committee.
  • Commitment to conduct a significant piece of research, expressed in a statement indicating the candidate's interests and how these interests are related to the content of the programme.
  • Level of English equivalent to B2 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, or higher.

Pre-enrolment

Calendar

- First period: 15 February - 16 April 2023
Notification of resolutions: before 7 May

- Second period: 19 April - 4 June 2023
Notification of resolutions: before 20 June

Notes:

  • Pre-enrolment fee: A pre-enrolment fee of 30,21 euros is charged. Students who apply to more than one master's degree must pay the fee for each pre-enrolment request. Pre-enrolment requests cannot be processed until this fee has been paid.Fees will only be refunded if the master's degree in question is suspended.
  • Reserved places: A maximum of 5% of the new places of the master's degree are reserved for students who meet the general and specific access requirements and accredit the recognition of a degree of disability equal to or greater than 33%.

Required documentation



The documents should be scanned and uploaded when completing the online application form

Selection criteria

The Admissions Committee evaluates candidates on the basis of the following criteria, weighted as shown:
  • Previous studies (50%)
  • Curriculum vitae and statement of interest (30%)
  • English language skills (20%)

When reviewing candidate's degrees in relation to the academic requirements, the Committee will assess the similarity of each degree to this master's degree as well as each candidate's academic record. If necessary, candidates may be asked to provide samples of their academic work or to attend a personal interview.

Notification

An Admissions Committee made up of representatives from the five participating universities select the candidates for admission to the programme. Students may be asked to attend a personal interview.

Enrolment

As a general rule, at the UB you will be required to enrol online. Remember that you can lose your place if you do not enrol on the day you have been assigned

Course curriculum

Subjects and course plans

Distribution of credits

Type ECTS
Compulsory 15
Optional 30
Compulsory placements 0
Compulsory final project 15
TOTAL 60

List of subjects

Subject Type Language Credits
Specialization: BC for admission to the Master's Degree in Cognitive Science and Language
Computational Linguistics Optional 1st semester 6
Grammatical Structures Optional 1st semester 6
Introduction to Logic Optional 1st semester 6
Issues in the Theory of Knowledge Optional 1st semester 6
Language and Communication Optional 1st semester 6
Perception and Attention Optional 1st semester 6
Philosophy of Language and Philosophy of Mind Optional 1st semester 6
Philosophy of Language Optional 1st semester 6
Philosophy of Science Optional 1st semester 6
Phonology Optional 2nd semester 6
Practicum in Experimental Design Optional 1st semester 12
Pragmatics Optional 2nd semester 6
Psycholinguistics and Neurolinguistics Optional 1st semester 6
Reasoning and Problem Solving Optional 2nd semester 6
Research Design Optional 2nd semester 6
Semantics Optional 1st semester 6
Syntax Optional 1st semester 6
Theory of Language Optional 2nd semester 6
Topics in Metaphysics Optional 1st semester 6

Bridging courses

Subject Type Language Credits
Specialization: Cognitive Models of Language Processing
Advanced Subjects in Linguistics and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Advanced Subjects in Philosophy and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Advanced Subjects in Psychology and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Cognitive Models of Syntactic Processing Optional 1st semester 5
Computational Morphosyntax Optional 2nd semester 5
Contrastive Linguistics Optional 2nd semester 5
Development of Speech, Language and Cognition Optional 1st semester 5
Empirical Linguistics Optional 2nd semester 5
Final Project Compulsory 1st semester
2nd semester
15
Foundations of Philosophy of Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Fundamental Principles and Structure of Language Compulsory 1st semester 5
Grammar and its Interfaces Optional 2nd semester 5
Interdisciplinary Applications of Linguistic Concepts Optional 1st semester 5
Language Processing in Bilingual Speakers Optional 2nd semester 5
Linguistic Variation Optional 1st semester 5
Mental Architecture and Basic Processes Compulsory 1st semester 5
Natural Language Processing Optional 1st semester 5
Perception, Action and Awareness Optional 1st semester 5
Philosophical Logic Optional 2nd semester 5
Philosophy of Cognitive Sciences Optional 2nd semester 5
Philosophy of Language and Cognition Compulsory 1st semester 5
Psychology, Language and Cognition Optional 2nd semester 5
Questions of Lexical Semantics Optional 2nd semester 5
The Nature of Language Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in Epistemology Optional 2nd semester 5
Topics in Ontology Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in Semantics and Pragmatics Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in the Philosophy of Mind Optional 2nd semester 5
Specialization: Grammatical Theory and Linguistic Processing
Advanced Subjects in Linguistics and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Advanced Subjects in Philosophy and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Advanced Subjects in Psychology and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Cognitive Models of Syntactic Processing Optional 1st semester 5
Computational Morphosyntax Optional 2nd semester 5
Contrastive Linguistics Optional 2nd semester 5
Development of Speech, Language and Cognition Optional 1st semester 5
Empirical Linguistics Optional 2nd semester 5
Final Project Compulsory 1st semester
2nd semester
15
Foundations of Philosophy of Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Fundamental Principles and Structure of Language Compulsory 1st semester 5
Grammar and its Interfaces Optional 2nd semester 5
Interdisciplinary Applications of Linguistic Concepts Optional 1st semester 5
Language Processing in Bilingual Speakers Optional 2nd semester 5
Linguistic Variation Optional 1st semester 5
Mental Architecture and Basic Processes Compulsory 1st semester 5
Natural Language Processing Optional 1st semester 5
Perception, Action and Awareness Optional 1st semester 5
Philosophical Logic Optional 2nd semester 5
Philosophy of Cognitive Sciences Optional 2nd semester 5
Philosophy of Language and Cognition Compulsory 1st semester 5
Psychology, Language and Cognition Optional 2nd semester 5
Questions of Lexical Semantics Optional 2nd semester 5
The Nature of Language Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in Epistemology Optional 2nd semester 5
Topics in Ontology Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in Semantics and Pragmatics Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in the Philosophy of Mind Optional 2nd semester 5
Specialization: Logic and Philosophy
Advanced Subjects in Linguistics and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Advanced Subjects in Philosophy and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Advanced Subjects in Psychology and Cognitive Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Cognitive Models of Syntactic Processing Optional 1st semester 5
Computational Morphosyntax Optional 2nd semester 5
Contrastive Linguistics Optional 2nd semester 5
Development of Speech, Language and Cognition Optional 1st semester 5
Empirical Linguistics Optional 2nd semester 5
Final Project Compulsory 1st semester
2nd semester
15
Foundations of Philosophy of Science Optional 2nd semester 5
Fundamental Principles and Structure of Language Compulsory 1st semester 5
Grammar and its Interfaces Optional 2nd semester 5
Interdisciplinary Applications of Linguistic Concepts Optional 1st semester 5
Language Processing in Bilingual Speakers Optional 2nd semester 5
Linguistic Variation Optional 1st semester 5
Mental Architecture and Basic Processes Compulsory 1st semester 5
Natural Language Processing Optional 1st semester 5
Perception, Action and Awareness Optional 1st semester 5
Philosophical Logic Optional 2nd semester 5
Philosophy of Cognitive Sciences Optional 2nd semester 5
Philosophy of Language and Cognition Compulsory 1st semester 5
Psychology, Language and Cognition Optional 2nd semester 5
Questions of Lexical Semantics Optional 2nd semester 5
The Nature of Language Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in Epistemology Optional 2nd semester 5
Topics in Ontology Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in Semantics and Pragmatics Optional 1st semester 5
Topics in the Philosophy of Mind Optional 2nd semester 5

Previous years

Placements

Placements in a company or another type of organization are an integral part of university studies, providing first-hand experience of working methodologies in students' chosen professional fields. They offer invaluable practical experience for the transition into work after graduation.



Placements are supervised by tutors and subject to assessment. They are therefore included in the academic record.  There is also an option to complete non-curricular placements of up to 500 hours, which can be extended to 900 hours. For both curricular and non-curricular placements, an educational cooperation agreement is signed between the UB and the company, institution or other organization at which the placement will be carried out.



Institutional information


Career opportunities

What can you work on ?

This master's degree is primarily a research-focused programme. As such, the main career opportunities are research and university teaching in fields related to the cognitive sciences. Other important areas include fields in which interdisciplinary training in language research is valuable, including publishing, information technology, cultural management, journalism and public administration.

Access to the labour market

Data from the university system in Catalonia

Contact us

Faculty of Philosophy
Montalegre, 6 - 08001 Barcelona

Secretary: 934 037 722 - 934 037 719
secretariafilosofia@ub.edu

Coordinator: 93 403 75 16
master.ccil@ub.edu