Sign in ArabicStart date: 1 January 2017
Duration: Three years
Closing date for applications: 1 September 2016

Funding (including tuition fees and a maintenance allowance) is available for a three year PhD studentship as part of a research consortium on ‘Cross-language dynamics: Re-shaping community’ (funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council under the Open World Research Initiative). The consortium comprises the Universities of Manchester, Durham and London, in partnership with additional higher education institutions and stakeholder organisations in the UK and abroad.

The studentship is based in the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures at the University of Manchester, and work will be carried out under the supervision of Professor Yaron Matras and Professor Stephen Hutchings.

Research Content

The studentship will link to the consortium strands on Transnational Language Communities and Multilingual Cities, and will explore one or more of the following themes:

  • Contexts in which immigrants of diverse Arabic-speaking backgrounds congregate around shared community institutions, constituting a language community in situ.
  • The way in which social media vernacularize written Arabic, on the one hand, while potentially supporting a transnational language identity by challenging national and global media monopolies.
  • Arabic as an indigenous minority language, and its relation to multilingual repertoires as well as global Arabic-language media.


Applicants will have

  • a first or upper-second class Honours degree, or equivalent, in a relevant discipline (Linguistics, Middle Eastern Studies, Modern Languages)
  • completed a masters-level qualification, at Merit level or higher, or equivalent, or be expecting to complete this by the time they start the PhD programme.
  • excellent knowledge of Arabic
  • proven acquaintance with dialect variation in Arabic, and interest in and awareness of some current and recent research directions in areas such as migration studies, transnationalism, globalisation.

The studentship, whose value is around 18k per academic year, is open to Home/EU and International applicants. Please note that International applicants will receive a reduced maintenance element due to the higher rate of tuition fees.


Applicants are requested to send a research proposal, which addresses the themes listed above, or some of them. The proposal should outline which themes the applicant would like to address, and how they will be addressed, and include a relevant contextualisation in the research literature. The research proposal should be accompanied by a CV and a cover letter indicating the applicant’s eligibility and qualifications. The research proposal, CV and cover letter should be sent to the Project Manager, Charlotte Jones:, by the closing date of 1 September 2016.

Applicants who are shortlisted will be invited for an interview and asked to send in a full formal online application to the School’s Graduate School Office.

Informal enquiries can be directed to
Professor Yaron Matras, email: