MA Computational Linguistics

University of Heidelberg, Germany

Link to programme

About Programme

Computational Linguistics is an interdisciplinary subject. We investigate how natural language can be automatically processed and interpreted by means of formal modelling and algorithmic and statistical procedures.

  • Type: On campus
  • Start: September, April
  • Language: German


  • Duration: 24 months
  • Fee national: $632
  • Fee international: $632

The emphasis is equally strong on research/theory – investigating the formal (mathematical and logical) properties of natural language and implementing them to come up with efficient algorithms – and on application. Many examples of existing and potential applications of Computational Linguistics can be found in modern society:

  • Support in translating texts from one language to another or completely automatic translation (machine translation)
  • Automatic management of large databases containing information in language form and the retrieval of information from such databases, e.g. via automatic production of summaries and abstracts (summarisation) or the location of specific information in a large number of academic publications (e-science)
  • Location of information in heterogeneous data sources (Internet, large structured databases, corporate portals, etc.)
  • Automatic question-answering on the basis of large databases or information in language form on the World Wide Web
  • Language-learning and correction programmes for foreign-language learners (vocabulary trainers and other practice programmes) and spelling and grammar correction programmes for native speakers in text editors
  • Linguistic interaction with computers or artificial intelligence (AI) systems in the field of robotics, virtual worlds or computer-aided medical care.

Alongside these practical applications, Computational Linguistics is also concerned with a variety of research issues deriving from various aspects of the formal and algorithmic perspective on the language phenomenon.

The M.A. course takes 4 semesters. Throughout its duration, students attend a computer-linguistic colloquium in which visiting scholars (German and international) discuss their work. The colloquium is also the forum in which advanced M.A. students report on progress with their M.A. theses.

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