Monash University

Postgraduate - Course

Students who commenced study in 2013 should refer to this course entry for direction on the requirements; to check which units are currently available for enrolment, refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course.

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This course entry applies to students commencing this course in 2013 and should be read in conjunction with information provided in the 'Faculty information' section of this Handbook by the Faculty of Arts

Managing facultyArts
Abbreviated titleMAppLing
CRICOS code075339G
Total credit points required72
Standard duration of study (years)1.5 years FT, 3 years PT
Study mode and locationOn-campus (Clayton)
Off-campus (Clayton)
Admission, fee and application details


  • Unit codes that are not linked to their entry in the Handbook are not available for study in the current year.
  • The Japanese applied linguistics stream and English as an international language stream are not available to off-campus students.


Professionals who know how language works and how it can be utilised in a multitude of situations are highly-valued in the workplace. In this course students will gain a critical understanding of theoretical and practical issues relating to applied linguistics, including second/foreign language acquisition, language teaching, language contact and intercultural communication.

Students receive training in research in the field and are equipped with skills to make a significant professional contribution to the field of applied linguistics.


These course outcomes are aligned with the Australian Qualifications Framework level 9, the Bologna Cycle 2 and Monash Graduate Attributes. For more information refer to

Upon successful completion of this course it is expected that graduates will be able to:

  • demonstrate a sound knowledge of diverse aspects of the academic discipline
  • articulate and apply an understanding of the world view of the field of study
  • demonstrate a critical appreciation of the secondary literature in the field of study
  • apply a critical familiarity with many of the key texts and cultural products pertaining to the field of study
  • apply advanced reading and communication skills, both written and verbal
  • demonstrate advanced analytical skills
  • demonstrate a thorough understanding of research methodology and ethics, and an ability to undertake a small, independent research project in one of the disciplines represented in the program


This course consists of a core unit, plus units selected from one of three streams and elective units. Students must complete a maximum of 48 points at fourth-year level and a minimum of 24 points at fifth-year level. All units are 12 points unless otherwise stated.


Stream A - General applied linguistics

Stream Coordinator: Dr Louisa Willoughby

This stream is designed to gives students a strong understanding of language structures and use across a variety of languages. In the core units, students explore the sounds and grammar of Australian English and how these differ from other English varieties and other languages around the world. Students also explore how we use language differently according to context and how language varies between different social groups. In elective units students have the opportunity to specialise in areas such as literacy, second language acquisition or language and identity.

This stream is ideal for a range of professionals, including interpreters, editors, policy makers and health care professionals: anyone working with language issues in a multilingual and multicultural context. It is also recommended for teachers of VCE English language, language teachers (including English as a second language) and generalist teachers looking to improve their knowledge of grammar/language structures to teach in the Australian national curriculum.

Students must complete:

plus three of:

* At least one of these units must be completed.

Stream B - Japanese applied linguistics

Note: Students must have competence in Japanese at an intermediate level or higher to take this stream.

Stream Coordinator: Dr Robyn Spence-Brown

This stream is designed to further students' understanding of second and foreign language acquisition, language teaching, language contact and intercultural communication with particular reference to Japanese. It also aims to develop students' skills in critical reading, the ability to write critically, and the ability to design a research project, where appropriate. Students may also include up to 24 points of advanced level Japanese language units.

This stream is ideal for LOTE teachers who currently teach Japanese, those looking to build a career as a Japanese teacher, or anyone with an intermediate (or higher) level of Japanese looking to develop high level proficiency in the language and a deeper understanding of sociolinguistic and intercultural communication issues in contemporary Japanese.

Students must complete:

plus four of:

  • APG4630/APG5630 Japanese sociolinguistics*
  • APG4631/APG5631 Asian languages in contact*
  • APG4634/APG5634 Japanese linguistics*
  • APG5706 Research project in linguistics and applied linguistics*, **
  • elective unit/s from the list below

* At least one of these units must be completed.

** Students must have a distinction average and have completed or be concurrently enrolled in APG4347/APG5347 (Research methodology in applied linguistics) to take this unit.

With the approval of the course coordinator students in this stream may take up to 24 points of Japanese language units within the School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics.

Stream C - English as an lnternational language

Stream Coordinator: Dr Zhichang Xu

This stream addresses both the theory and practice of teaching English as an international language. It examines the implications of the global spread of English and development of world Englishes for the field of English language teaching. The stream recognises that successful learning of English for international communication in the 21st century requires sound knowledge of English as an international language and intercultural communication skills.

Specifically, the stream focuses on the pedagogy of intercultural communication, which is central to the teaching of English as an international language, and explores in great depth the global diversity of the English language, through the study of world Englishes.

Students must complete:

  • APG4020 Practices of teaching Englishes for international communication
  • APG4347/APG5347 Research methods in applied linguistics
  • APG4735 Issues in teaching English as an international language

plus two of:

  • APG4652/APG5652 Managing intercultural communication*
  • APG5349 World Englishes *
  • 12 points from the list of electives below

* At least one of these units must be completed.

Electives across all streams

On-campus electives

Note: Students enrolling in on-campus units must be able to attend weekly classes at Monash's Clayton campus.

  • APG4020 Practices of teaching Englishes for international communication
  • APG4346 Language in society
  • APG4348/APG5348 Second language acquisition
  • APG4630/APG5630 Japanese sociolinguistics
  • APG4631/APG5631 Asian languages in contact
  • APG4633/APG5633 Teaching and learning Asian languages
  • APG4634/APG5634 Japanese linguistics
  • APG4652/APG5652 Managing intercultural communication
  • APG4698 General linguistics
  • APG4734 Renationalising English: Language, culture, and communication
  • APG4735 Issues in teaching English as an international language
  • APG5707 Special Topic in languages, cultures and linguistics

Students who obtain a distinction average and who have completed or are concurrerntly enrolled in APG4347/APG5347 (Research methodology in applied linguistics) may seek approval from the course coordinator to undertake APG5706 (Research project in linguistics and applied linguistics) as one of the electives. In some cases, approval may be given for the completion of the 24-point unit APG5760 (Research dissertation in applied linguistics), which will count as two electives.

Alternative electives may be approved on an individual basis.

Off-campus electives

Note: International students who are living in Australia generally have visa restrictions that prevent them from taking off-campus units.

Alternative electives may be approved on an individual basis.

Alternative exit(s)

Students who have completed studies in the master's to the value of:

  • 24 points may apply to exit with 3767 Graduate Certificate in Applied Linguistics
  • 48 points may apply to exit with 0010 Graduate Diploma in Applied Linguistics


Master of Applied Linguistics