Language shapes our world and communicates knowledge. Communication through language and talk is universal across all cultures and has allowed humans to develop thought and share information.

Linguistics is the science of language. Studying it helps us unlock how language works and understand how we communicate with each other.

One of the first British-style English language courses in China, this degree will:

  • equip you with advanced critical insights into communication in English
  • give you a thorough understanding of Western linguistic theory and applied linguistic analysis
  • ensure you develop a sophisticated understanding of how language is used in context and influenced by purpose, setting and audience
  • develop your communicative ability in English, both oral and written, at the highest level for international interactions, whether academic or professional.

This course is suited to students who enjoy working in different disciplines, are open to learning new things, and have an interest in the analysis and uses of language.

Course structure

For domestic Mainland Chinese students the course structure follows the Chinese higher education system and is based on a four-year programme with the possibility of spending two years at The University of Nottingham's UK campus.

For international students the course structure follows the UK higher education system and is based on a three-year programme with the possibility of spending two years at The University of Nottingham's UK campus.

Please note: This degree structure and modules may be subject to change.

Year one (preliminary year) This year is not compulsory for students with appropriate qualifications for year two entry.

In the preliminary year, the focus is on a special programme and English for academic purposes. Designed by staff at the University’s Centre for English Language Education, this programme prepares students for their degree courses.

Year two (qualifying year)

Students are introduced to standard theories of language and explore various contexts of language in use. They are also introduced to modern literature and develop advanced language skills.

The compulsory modules students can expect to study are outlined below:

Compulsory modules

  • Language and Context
  • Introduction to Linguistics
  • The Influence of English

Year three (part one)

Students develop a more varied skill set for the analysis of language (advanced grammar, psycholinguistics, discourse analysis) and investigate research methods for applied linguistics.

The compulsory modules students can expect to study are outlined below:

Compulsory modules

  • Investigating English Language: Psycholinguistics
  • Fundamentals in Research Methods
  • Discourse and Society
  • Literary Linguistics
  • Advanced Grammar for Study and the Professions

Year four (part two)

Students specialise in applied linguistics, sociolinguistics and pragmatics and they have the choice of writing a dissertation or of putting together a teaching portfolio.

Compulsory modules

  • Sociolinguistics
  • Corpus Linguistics
  • Communication in the Workplace

Careers and further study

The study of language, and the skills gained, can lead to a wide variety of careers including:

  • Advertising, marketing and public relations
  • Business and management
  • Communications
  • Copywriting
  • Data collection and analysis
  • Events management
  • International business
  • Language teaching
  • Language testing
  • Language school management
  • Market research
  • Media work
  • Research and academia
  • Translating and interpreting

Our graduates are highly successful in going onto further study and careers at prestigious institutions where advanced communication skills, analytical abilities and cultural awareness are highly sought after. Of the 31 undergraduates who graduated from the School of English in 2014 and continued onto postgraduate studies, 68% were admitted by world top 100 universities and 45% by world top 40 according to the 2013-14 QS World University Rankings. Typical graduate career destinations include: business and finance, journalism, publishing, teaching, internet and ecommerce, government and public institutions.

Student profile

After graduating from The University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC), Zhao Yue went on to study a masters in applied linguistics and second language acquisition at The University of Oxford in the United Kingdom.

She said: “Teaching staff at UNNC were very friendly, supportive and helpful. Their wonderful lectures and interesting ways of teaching developed my research interest in applied linguistics that determined my resolve to pursue this area of study.

“The course nurtured my critical thinking, analytical skills and other essential research skills, all of which are transferable skills that I have found of great value in other contexts.”

International opportunities

This degree is offered as a three- or four-year programme depending on your entry qualifications. Students have the option to study the whole course in China or spend their last two years at The University of Nottingham UK Campus.

Mainland Chinese students entry requirements

Entry for Mainland Chinese students is through the National Higher Education Entrance Examination, commonly known as Gaokao.

Only applicants with the highest grades (first division) are eligible to study at The University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC). A minimum score of 115 for English is required to enrol for a degree programme here.

The minimum average Gaokao scores of our applicants increases each year, with students achieving significantly higher scores than the required minimum for first division entry.

Entry requirements

English language requirements

In addition to academic qualifications, if your first language is not English or your entry qualification was not obtained in the English medium (from an approved institution) you are required to provide evidence of your proficiency in English.

The minimum requirements for our undergraduate (bachelors) courses are listed below:

Preliminary (year one) year

  • IELTS 5.5 (no less than 5.0 in writing)
  • PTE Academic 55 (minimum 51)

Qualifying (year two) year

  • IELTS 6.5 (no less than 6.0 in writing)
  • PTE Academic 62 (minimum 55)

Alternative test scores may also be considered.

Please note that meeting minimum admissions requirements does not guarantee admission.

Program taught in:
  • English

See 4 more programs offered by The University of Nottingham Ningbo China »

This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sep 2020
3 - 4 years
80,000 CNY
per year
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