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  This doctoral program focuses on the rapidly growing field of cognitive science. It caters to a wide community of researchers studying the interaction between language and cognitive systems. Cognitive science is by definition a place of convergence and Language and Cognition seeks to bring together in a disciplinary and institutional interface research groups working on similar theoretical grounds and methodological approaches in their analyses of language phenomena.
The program is designed primarily to enable doctoral students to become familiar with the various aspects of theoretical and methodological approaches to language as a cognitive process. It provides to its target audience, scientific, theoretical and methodological bases in order to
stimulate a firm anchoring of their dissertation project within a wider field of scientific investigation.
Through its organizational structure and modus used for workshops, the program also seeks to stimulate the development of a Swiss network of scholars across institutional partners. It also encourages the development of strong links between the participants of the doctoral program in order to build and foster a truly dynamic research community.
The program also responds to the recent creation of Centers for Cognitive Sciences at several Swiss institutions.

Structure and organization

The doctoral program Language and Cognition offers series of 2-3 day workshops on related themes (see list below). Invited international experts participate actively in these workshops.

During these workshops, doctoral students take part in question and answer sessions, presentations of state-of-the-art research, and discussions of projects. They are expected to present their research work through posters, or short sketches. Workshops will typically take place in venues that allow the group to develop a dynamic community and that facilitate social and scientific contacts between the participants. Each participating scholar offers a workshop within their field of specialisation. The foci on offer alternate between different main thematic clusters.


  • Cognition and language development
  • Cognitive Psycholinguistics
  • Cognition and interpretative processes
  • Bilingualism and cognition
  • Cognitive and language disorders
  • Cognitive Sociolinguistics
  • Language and Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cognition and L2 Acquisition
  • Experimental Methodology
  • Statistical Methodology

Participating Scholars

  • Prof. J.-M. Annoni, Prof. R. Berthele,
  • Prof. V. Camos, PrD. Dr. P. Gygax,
  • Prof. E. Hartmann, Prof. M. Laganaro, Prof. D. Maillat,
  • Prof. J. Moeschler, Prof. L. de Saussure


Interested doctoral candidates should contact the programme coordinator, Ms Heidi Aro, at heidi.aro(at)



    All practical and administrative questions should be addressed to the programme coordinator, Ms Heidi Aro, at heidi.aro(at)


    The SwissUniversities doctoral workshop Language & Cognition is organised by the University of Fribourg in collaboration with the University of Geneva and the University of Neuchâtel.

    The Did@ctic Centre at UNIFR offer a complementary training for doctoral students that focuses on practical, administrative and logistic skills that will come handy during a PhD project. We encourage participants to take a look at this complementary offer.

    Swiss Universities have published practical guides explaining the various steps of doctoral and post-doctoral work and providing useful tips and insights. We encourage participants to take a look at these documents (in En, Fr, or Ge) here.