Master's Programme in Language Technology

120 credits

The Master's Programme in Language Technology teaches you how to make computers perform useful and interesting tasks involving human language. Examples include document relevance ranking and filtering, automatic translation, writers' aids, business intelligence, and profiling of individuals. Recent progress in language technology is to a large extent due to developments in machine learning and artificial intelligence. The programme prepares you for a career in the commercial language technology field, as well as a future in the academic world.

Autumn 2023 Autumn 2023, Uppsala, 100%, On-campus, English

Autumn 2024 Autumn 2024, Uppsala, 100%, On-campus, English

Applications involving language technology are defining and redefining contemporary culture in more or less all corners of the world. Examples include document relevance ranking and filtering (in e.g. search engines and social media), automatic translation, writers' aids, business intelligence, and profiling of individuals. The core of language technology are methods for automatically analysing texts with a sensitivity to their linguistic structure and content.

The challenges for language technology lie in the richness, unpredictability, and creativity of human communication, not least in the new modes of personal expression encouraged by social media. In working with the practical side of language technology, you will also gain insights into more theoretical computational linguistics. Important themes are empirical methods and data collection, statistics in modelling of linguistic phenomena, and machine learning.

Some key features of the programme are:

  • you will acquire skills in performing quantitative analysis of linguistic data,
  • you will learn to work with large-scale machine-learning approaches to language technology,
  • you will work with teachers from the internationally prominent computational linguistics group at Uppsala University,
  • as one of our students, you are encouraged to take an active role in the development of the programme.

Student profile

Many of our students have a background in linguistics and an interest in computer science. They are highly motivated and willing to take responsibility for their own education. A future PhD education is a possibility, but starting to work right after graduation is also common.


The programme leads to the degree of Master of Arts (120 credits) with Language Technology as the main field of study.

Year 1

The first semester of the two-year programme provides a starting point for further studies. Courses in programming and mathematics give you the skills necessary for performing quantitative analysis of linguistic phenomena and for working with large-scale automatic processing of linguistic data. The semester also includes an overview of the various issues and methods typical of language technology.

The second semester provides further depth in programming and key language technology areas, with an emphasis on statistical methods. There is also room for elective courses, allowing you to tailor your studies to your own interests and career plans.

Year 2

The course Language Technology: Research and Development in the third semester focus on project work and research methodology, spurring you to think critically, independently, and creatively when approaching language technology tasks. Further elective courses will highlight key language technology areas or other relevant fields.

The fourth and final semester is dedicated to the Master's thesis, in which you conduct an in-depth study of some approaches to a language technology problem.

Courses within the programme

First semester

  • Programming for Language Technologists I, 7.5 credits
  • Mathematics for Language Technologists, 7.5 credits
  • Advanced Programming for Language Technologists, 7.5 credits
  • Natural Language Processing, 7,5 credits

Second semester

  • Machine learning in Natural Language Processing, 7.5 credits
  • Elective courses, 22.5 credits

Third semester

  • Language Technology: Research and Development, 15 credits
  • Elective courses, 15 credits

Fourth semester

  • Master's Thesis in Language Technology, 30 credits

The degree requirements give you considerable freedom in the selection of courses and we encourage the inclusion of other courses motivated by, for instance, your previous background, special interests, or studies at another university.

As a student in the Master's Programme in Language Technology, you will meet the full range of teaching and assessment methods typical of university education, including lectures, computer lab sessions, seminars, individual studies, group assignments, written and oral presentations. Practical work with large datasets and computational models will be an important part of your studies. As a student in the programme, you are encouraged to take an independent and experimental approach to different methods and to different kinds of data (e.g. covering different languages). Several courses consequently involve larger assignments.

The final semester of the programme is dedicated to the Master's thesis project. In this, you can focus your attention on some field in language technology that you find particularly rewarding. It also provides an opportunity to work together with a company or public body.

The language of instruction is English, and you must develop your abilities to document language technology applications with academic precision and on a professional level.

Depending on your interests and profile, you will be attractive for different positions in the language technology industry. You might work as a system developer, with language or customer adaptation, in support, and marketing. Important sectors are machine translation and tools for translators, as well as other kinds of authoring support systems. Other examples are systems for document retrieval and classification. Information extraction from natural language text is also a core component of business intelligence services. Another important branch is speech technology, where systems producing and recognising speech are developed. Language technologists also work with research and education in the academic world.

Some of our graduates work at smaller companies specialising in language technology or artificial intelligence. Other alumni have found employment at large companies working in these fields, such as Google and Microsoft. A number of students have found positions as researchers or PhD students in universities.

The language technology field is characterised by close interaction between university groups and commercial companies. This kind of competence also opens doors to related fields, e.g. where different kinds of human behavioural data are analysed by computational methods.

Career support

During your time as a student, UU Careers offers support and guidance. You have the opportunity to take part in a variety of activities and events that will prepare you for your future career. Learn more about UU Careers.