PhD Candidate in Multilingualism

Updated: about 2 months ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 16 Apr 2023

16th April 2023

  • English

The Department of Language and Literature has a vacancy for a PhD Candidate in Multilingualism.
PhD Candidate in Multilingualism
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About the position

We invite applications from qualified individuals for a 3-year PhD position within the research group AcqVA (Acquisition, Variation & Attrition).

The AcqVA group ( ) is a joint research group between UiT The Arctic University of Norway in Tromsø and NTNU in Trondheim. The Trondheim unit of the group consists of 24 researchers, including 4 professors, 6 associate professors, 2 postdocs/researchers, 8 PhD candidates, and 3 adjunct professorships. The group members are involved in a range of research projects both locally and internationally, many of which have received external funding.

Changes in states of linguistic knowledge, be it in develop­ment (acqui­sition) or possible erosion over the life­span (attri­tion), exa­mined across complementary populations and multiple lan­guage com­binations (variation), provide crucial know­ledge about the organi­za­tion of mental gram­mars. AcqVA conducts research based on real-life situ­a­tions, re­flect­ing today’s globa­lized world where learning mul­tiple lan­guages at various points in the lifetime has become increasingly common. AcqVA’s vision is to provide ground­breaking data and novel theories that will sub­stan­tially increase our understanding of how mental gram­mars may vary, how they develop in children and adults, and change under condi­tions of reduced input and use.

In Trondheim, research centers around two topics: i) second (L2) and third (L3) language acquisition, and ii) understanding variation in closely related varieties. The advertised PhD position will provide an opportunity for research projects within the first of these areas (L2/L3 acquisition) and on any suitable language combinations.


Your immediate leader is the Head of the Department.

Duties of the position

The successful applicants must commit to completing their PhD studies within the period of employment, and will be enrolled in the PhD program in Language and Linguistics at the Faculty of Humanities. The PhD project must focus on L2 or L3 acquisition, and be relevant for ongoing research in the AcqVA group. The candidate will be expected to participate in activities in the group, such as seminars and presentations.

Qualification requirements 
  • A Master's degree or equivalent in Linguistics, Multilingualism, language studies or another relevant field. Your education must correspond to a five-year Norwegian degree programme, where 120 credits are obtained at master's level
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English
  • Personal suitability and motivation for the position
  • You must have a strong academic background from your previous studies and an average grade from the master's degree program, or equivalent education, which is equal to B or better compared with NTNU's grading scale. If you do not have letter grades from previous studies, you must have an equally good academic basis. If you have a weaker grade background, you may be assessed if you can document that you are particularly suitable for a PhD education

You must meet the requirements for admission to the Doctoral Program in Language and Linguistics .

Preferred selection criteria
  • Experience with previous research within language acquisition or multilingualism 
  • Experience with relevant methodologies 

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on the suitability and feasibility of the suggested project as described in the project description, as well as education, experience and personal and interpersonal qualities. Motivation, ambitions, and potential will also count in the assessment of the candidates.


The appointment is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants and Regulations concerning the degrees of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) and Philosodophiae Doctor (PhD) in artistic research national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant .


We offer
  • exciting and stimulating tasks in a strong international academic environment
  • an open and inclusive work environment with dedicated colleagues
  • favourable terms in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
  • employee benefits

Salary and conditions

As a PhD candidate (code 1017) you are normally paid from gross NOK 501 200 per annum before tax, depending on qualifications and seniority. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 3 years. Candidates with relevant competence may have the opportunity to teach on the Department's undergraduate programs, with a corresponding extension to their contract, or may be offered employment for 4 years with 25% of the workload dedicated to teaching duties.The period of employment is 3 years. Candidates with relevant competence may have the opportunity to teach on the Department's undergraduate programs, with a corresponding extension to their contract.
Appointment to a PhD position requires that you are admitted to the PhD programme in Doctoral Program in Language and Linguistics within three months of employment, and that you participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment period.


The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants , and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU. After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work.

The position is subject to external funding (ta stilling til om stillinger skal være betinget av ekstern finansiering).

It is a prerequisite you can be present at and accessible to the institution daily.

About the application

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment must be in English or a Scandinavian language (Norwegian, Swedish, or Danish).

The applicant must document a high scientific potential through the project description. The project description is a key element in evaluating the applicants. It is also highly important that the project is feasible within the nominal length of study, which is three years full time, with ½ year set aside for the coursework component.

The successful applicant must commit to completing a PhD within the period of employment and the available resources. The applicant must therefore show that they will have access to the necessary equipment and infrastructure to complete the project. PhD research fellows at the Faculty of Humanities will receive up to NOK 150 000, - in working capital (driftsmidler) to complete the project.

The application must include:

  • Application letter describing the applicant’s qualifications and motivation for the position 
  • A project description outlining a research proposal of maximum 10 pages containing research questions, theoretical background, methodology, and a plan for the 3-year period. The project description should strengthen and complement the research profile of the AcqVA group. The proposal should follow the template from the Faculty of Humanities, see
  • CV, certificates and diplomas
  • Transcripts and diplomas for bachelor's and master's degrees. If you have not completed the master's degree, you must submit a confirmation that the master's thesis has been submitted. Documentation of a completed master's degree must be presented before taking up the position
  • A copy of the master's thesis. If you have recently submitted your master's thesis, you can attach a draft of the thesis
  • Name and address of three referees

If all, or parts, of your education has been taken abroad, we also ask you to attach documentation of the scope and quality of your entire education, both bachelor's and master's education, in addition to other higher education. Description of the documentation required can be found here . If you already have a statement from NOKUT, please attach this as well.

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment - DORA.

General information

Working at NTNU

NTNU believes that inclusion and diversity is our strength. We want to recruit people with different competencies, educational backgrounds, life experiences and perspectives to contribute to solving our social responsibilities within education and research. We will facilitate for our employees’ needs.

NTNU is working actively to increase the number of women employed in scientific positions and has a number of resources to promote equality.  

The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of 200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools, kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted.

A public list of applicants with name, age, job title and municipality of residence is prepared after the application deadline. If you want to reserve yourself from entry on the public applicant list, this must be justified. Assessment will be made in accordance with current legislation . You will be notified if the reservation is not accepted.

For further information about the position, please consult the AcqVA website and/or contact Associate professor Anne Dahl: . If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact Elisabeth Leite, e-mail: .

If you think this looks interesting and in line with your qualifications, please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates attached. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Upon request, you must be able to obtain certified copies of your documentation.  

Application deadline: 16.04.2023

NTNU - knowledge for a better world

NTNU - knowledge for a better world

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.

Department of Language and Literature

We conduct research and teaching in comparative literature, English, French, Spanish, German, Scandinavian studies, linguistics, phonetics, applied linguistics, sign language and interpreting, and cultural history. We are also responsible for the five-year master’s programmes in teacher education (lektorutdanning) in language subjects. The Department has an active research environment with responsibility for several large research projects. The Department of Language and Literature is one of six departments in the Faculty of Humanities .

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16th April 2023


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