PhD studentship in morphological change

A funded PhD in the Surrey Morphology Group investigating change to inflectional morphology.

Start date

1 October 2023


3 years

Application deadline

Funding source

Leverhulme Trust

Funding information

All fees, stipend at UKRI rates p.a. (currently at £17,668), and a budget for conference travel.


We have an exciting opportunity for a fully funded PhD in historical linguistics with the Surrey Morphology Group on the subject of change to inflectional morphology.

We invite proposals investigating morphological change in any language or family, and particularly encourage proposals taking an empirical approach, i.e. involving the collection and analysis of diachronic data. Potential topics for investigation could include (but are not limited to) areas such as:

  • Mechanisms or statistical tendencies of morphological change;
  • Interactions between morphological change and phonology or syntax;
  • Origins of and/or constraints on the development of particular morphological phenomena;
  • Effects of sociolinguistic conditions on morphological change.

The Surrey Morphology Group is a world-class research centre dedicated to the study of language diversity and its theoretical consequences. The student will receive comprehensive training and support in a lively and stimulating research environment, working alongside leading researchers on inflectional morphology.

Related links

Predicting language evolution: Analogy in morphological change

Eligibility criteria

Applicants are expected to hold a good first degree (a minimum 2:1 or equivalent) in Linguistics or a related discipline, and should have training in historical linguistics. Applicants will usually be expected to have an MA or equivalent.

English language requirements

IELTS minimum 6.5 overall with 6.0 in each category and at least 7.0 in Writing when processing Linguistics applications.

How to apply

Apply for a Linguistics PhD with us via the Linguistics programme page on the ‘Apply’ tab, selecting a full-time PhD starting in October 2023, and mentioning the studentship in your application. As part of your application you will have to upload a CV and a research proposal outlining your research questions and proposed methodology. For all enquiries contact Dr Helen Sims-Williams (

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Application deadline

Contact details

Helen Sims-Williams

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