Computer Laboratory

Natural Language and Information Processing Research Group

Graduate courses in computational linguistics and language technologies

The NLIP group offer a range of modules and research projects in the MPhil in Advanced Computer Science (ACS) and Part III of the Computer Science Tripos, allowing students to specialise in language processing, including machine learning applied to language. We also welcome PhD applications from students with some previous experience of NLIP topics. These options are discussed in more detail on this page.

MPhil in Advanced Computer Science (ACS)

A range of language modules are available on the ACS. These are taught by members of the NLIP group. Detailed advice on module selection can be obtained from the course advisor for students accepted on the ACS. The Overview module is appropriate for students who have no exposure to language processing, and may be taken either by students who wish to specialise in that area, or those who simply want a broad overview of the topic.

The ACS MPhil is intended to prepare students for research and students who wish to do a project with a supervisor in the NLIP group will usually choose most of their taught modules from the language processing options. A list of some of the projects which Masters students have undertaken in previous years (some from the previous CSTIT Masters course) can be found here. Suggestions for projects by the NLIP group are updated every year, but previous suggestions may also be a useful indication of topics.

Accepted ACS students specializing in language processing and interested in interdisciplinary research are eligible to be members of the Language Sciences Interdisciplinary Programme. LSIP students may be able to work on a project co-supervised by a member of another department or take a taught course in another department as an ACS Special Topic, if they have a suitable background. Some further details relating to the ACS are here.


Students currently undertaking the Computer Science Tripos who continue to Part III can take the same modules as ACS students. Part III projects are shorter than ACS projects, but otherwise very similar and most of the project suggestions for the ACS are also suitable for Part III. Students from other Triposes (Mathematics, Physics, Linguistics) with suitable background and interests may also be eligible to take Part III CST and specialize in language processing.

PhD applications to the NLIP group

In general we would expect students who wish to start a PhD without doing the ACS to have taken some courses in language processing at undergraduate or masters level and to have done a short research project in the area. The application requirements for the PhD include a research proposal: applicants are welcome to contact the member of the NLIP staff with interests closest to their own to discuss this. See individual staff pages (Briscoe, Buttery, Copestake, Sun, Teufel, and Vlachos), the pages for group research projects and current PhD students' pages. We are also happy to advise on whether applicants should apply directly for the PhD or should take the ACS first.