Universiteit Leiden

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Linguistics (research) (MA)

Career prospects

Create a world of opportunities with a master's degree from Leiden University.

What our graduates do

Our graduates pursue careers at research agencies or in the research departments of companies or government organisations. Many enter PhD programmes at Leiden or another university, both in the Netherlands or abroad.

Outside of research, your knowledge of linguistics and advanced analytical and problem-solving skills can be applied within a range of vocations, from publishing and translating to teaching.

Examples of the roles of our graduates include:

  • PhD Candidate at universities in the Netherlands or abroad, such as the US, the UK, Sweden, France and Germany
  • Junior advisor at an institute for linguistic research and language teaching
  • Editor at a publishing house
  • Freelance translator
  • Consular officer at a ministry of foreign affairs
  • Technical writer
  • Content manager, editor, translator at NGO's
  • Translator within EU organisations
  • Author of digital educational materials
  • Research assistant at an university in Canada
  • Project manager at a translation agency
  • Teacher at a secondary school

Anne-Mieke Thieme


Anne-Mieke Thieme

"What I enjoyed most about my Research Master in Linguistics was the emphasis on critical thinking and academic skills, as well as the ability to tailor the programme to my own interests. My thesis was about the language policy of the multilingual city of The Hague (supervised by professor Ingrid Tieken-Boon van Ostade). I found that the municipality generally takes a monolingual approach, unless expats or internationals are involved. "

Opening new doors "My Research Master opened a lot of new doors for me: I got to present my research at various conferences, I got invited to a debate about multilingualism in The Hague, and I am now researching multilingual daycare at the University of Amsterdam. I hope to continue to contribute to socially relevant matters in linguistics in the future!"

Kim Groothuis

Graduated in Italian Language and Linguistics (MA) and Linguistics (Research Master)

Kim Groothuis

“My masters in Leiden have given me the opportunity to explore my interests in many ways: I combined the master in Italian with the Research Master in Linguistics in order to follow my interests in both Italian dialectology, and theoretical and historical syntax.”

A wide variety of courses

“Both programmes offer a wide variety of courses, which you can combine exactly as you see fit: whether you wish to dive into one specific subfield or combine various interests. All courses are taught by specialists in the field, who are not only very knowledgeable, but also extremely helpful and enthusiastic.”

An excellent preparation

“At the moment I am studying for my PhD in comparative Romance syntax at the University of Cambridge. Apart from doing research, I also teach undergraduates during supervisions (something comparable to small ‘werkcolleges’). My masters in Leiden have been an excellent preparation for this next step, because they combined theory with ongoing research – part of which you will have to do yourself, during the courses and later for your thesis. It is this aspect of the masters which in my opinion is the most valuable, especially if you wish to continue in academia.”

A Leiden University degree

Leiden University Master's graduates are sought-after employees at (inter)national organisations. Our graduates are known for their combination of robust academic training, in-depth and relevant knowledge, and critical, multidisciplinary approach to problem-solving.

The graphs below are based on alumni data from the Research Master Linguistics 2015-2019.

In which sector do students find jobs?

  • 60.0 % Research
  • 13.0 % Education
  • 13.0 % Government and semi-government organisations
  • 7.0 % Business services
  • 7.0 % Information management

How successful are they in finding a job?

  • 80.0 % found a job within two months
  • 93.0 % found their first job at academic level

Career preparation

Find out how this programme exactly prepares you for your future career at Career preparation.

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