LINGUIST List 29.412

Wed Jan 24 2018

Support: Text/Corpus Linguistics: PhD, University of Essex

Editor for this issue: Clare Harshey <>

Date: 24-Jan-2018
From: Aline Villavicencio <>
Subject: Text/Corpus Linguistics: PhD, University of Essex, UK
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Department: SCEE
Level: PhD

Institution/Organization: University of Essex

Duties: Research,Project Work

Specialty Areas: Text/Corpus Linguistics


PhD Studentship: What do you mean? Automatic identification of language barriers for effective communication with government organisations
University of Essex - Computer Science and Electronic Engineering
Qualification type: PhD
Location: Colchester
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: £14,553
Hours: Full Time
Placed on: 23rd January 2018
Closes: 23rd February 2018
Reference: CSEE/APR18/06


The School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering at the University of Essex is pleased to announce a PhD studentship available in “What do you mean? Automatic identification of language barriers for effective communication with government organisations”.

This studentship will start from 23 April 2018 and once awarded, you'll receive the scholarship for three years of your PhD (subject to satisfactory progression).

The studentship includes:
- A fee waiver equal to the Home/EU fee (for 2017/18, £4,120). International students will need to pay the balance of their fees.
- A stipend equivalent to the Research Councils UK National Minimum Doctoral Stipend (£14,553 in 2017-18)

The goal of this project is to use data science and natural language processing to investigate techniques for building language profiles of specific groups of speakers. Clustering methods will be employed to define target clusters of speakers on the basis of information about their age, socio-economic context, and education, and based on their language profiles methods for automatic readability assessment will determine whether information from a given document is optimally written for targeting that group. This will enable the use of information customisable to the language abilities of different groups of speakers, and can be used to increase accessibility to digital content.

The successful applicant will be supervised by: Dr Aline Villavicencio, Dr Renato Amorim and Prof Slava Mikhaylov.

Additional questions and queries about the studentship to be addressed to: Dr Aline Villavicencio , Dr Renato Amorim and Prof Slava Mikhaylov

Entry requirements and application procedures:

At a minimum, the successful applicant will have a good honours BSc degree (1st class or high 2:1, or equivalent) in computer science or related subjects. An MSc with Merit or Distinction is desirable (but not essential for students with a first class degree). Strong analytical and mathematical skills are required, as well as good programming skills. Knowledge of natural language processing and machine learning are desirable but not essential.

Applications should be submitted electronically by 23 February 2018. See for details, including uploading all supporting documents required. Also include on your PG Admissions application form that you wish to apply for this scholarship, quoting Ref CSEE/APR18/06.

You are also required to submit a separate application form, which can be accessed here and submit separately to: by the deadline of Friday 23 February 2018, quoting Ref CSEE/APR18/06.

Applicants will be informed of the outcome of their application for their PHD course and the scholarship award by the end of March 2018.

Applications Deadline: 23-Feb-2018

Mailing Address for Applications:
        Attn: Dr. Aline Villavicencio
        University of Essex
        Wivenhoe Park
        Colchester CO4 3SQ
        United Kingdom

Web Address for Applications:

Contact Information:
        Dr Renato Amorim

Page Updated: 24-Jan-2018