Master's and PhD in Natural Language Processing
6 years of research without
thinking of money
Not a loan • No additional
work • Guaranteed by Government
The Natural Language
Processing Laboratory of the Center for Computing Research (CIC)
of the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN),
Mexico City, Mexico, offers a limited number of scholarships to international
students for earning Master's or PhD degree in Computer Science
with a thesis in the area of Natural Language Processing. After earning a
Master's degree, the students are encouraged to apply for the PhD level, and (if
they pass; usually they do) the scholarship is extended accordingly.
Topics include, but are not limited to, all areas of Natural
(NLP), Computational Linguistics (CL), Human Language Technologies (HLT), and related
areas. See our publications
and defended theses
for examples of our research interests.
Amount of scholarship: Master's
PhD: 800 USD per month approx (including
here can be updated info in Spanish). This is more than enough for
normal living and renting a room in Mexico City. The scholarship is not a
loan: you are not expected to return it; no service (such as
teaching assistance) is required. Here is my presentation
about our scholarships prepared for India (most probably applied to your
Duration: Master's: up to 2 years (usually extendable
to 2.5 years), PhD: up to 4 years.
Type of program: Research. Both programs are oriented to scientific research and publication
rather than to improving your programming skills.
Employment: Most of our PhD graduates are
employed in academia and governmentally funded research, though there are
success stories of employment in top companies. Our MSc students typically
continue to the PhD level; those that decided not to continue, are employed in
academia or industry.
Admission: here is a description of our
admission procedure, but please read on;
you will find the same link at the bottom of this page.
Why study at CIC?
Certification: Our Master's program is one of very
few programs in Mexico certified by the Government as an international
Elite: CIC is an elite research center, the
leading national research center in Computer Science.
Future: Almost all of our
PhD graduates are lecturers
or researchers in good universities, some with
degree. Most of them have achieved for their
productivity an important certification of
National Researcher of Mexico.
Many of our Master's graduates
continue to study for
PhD degree, some with us and some in Europe, e.g., in
UK or France.
Quality: Many of our students received
three of them received a
Gold Medal from the hands of the President of the
country and one even received the
Microsoft Research Latin America Fellowship.
Contacts: we actively collaborate with excellent research groups
in Europe, USA, Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
Opportunities: several our students have passed
Microsoft, Oracle, Yahoo!, and Xerox. We give funding for internships at best
Winning: our students have
won international competitions
of systems and algorithms.
Advisors: Our professors have excellent
publication record, are academicians of the Mexican Academy of Science and
National Researchers of Mexico of excellence levels 3 (highest) or 2 (second
highest), and have also received important awards.
Funding: our students are provided funding for
attending conferences (on the national territory and in some cases
abroad), as well as for publishing in top journals that require payment.
Activities: Our students participate in
organization of large international conferences such as
MICAI and help their advisors
in other important activities, such as editing prestigious journals. Mexico
has only two computer science journals certified by the Government for
academic excellence: CyS and
and the Editors-in-Chief of both of them are professors of our Laboratory.
Ambience: We have an international team of
professors and students. Our program has professors from
and our NLP group has or has had students from
Our professors are supervising or have supervised theses in
Friendly atmosphere: our professors are helpful
and our students are friendly; we all are good friends.
Freedom: Our students choose the topic they like; we will adapt
to your interests. We are also liberal as to attending, days or exams,
Tourism: Mexico is a very interesting and exotic country, rich in
history, culture, and nature. Come to see something different from your
Summer: In the middle of winter frosts in the North, you will
enjoy sun and palms. Never cold and almost never too hot.
Need more reasons? Come and find out for yourself.
- Strong interest, self-motivation, independence
in learning and research.
- Research interest specifically in Natural Language Processing or
related areas, according to the research topic you suggest.
- Absolute determination to finish the program: once admitted, you
must finish the program and receive the degree.
- Programming or scripting skills (application level) are required,
though in case of PhD could be waived, with willing to self-learn programming. Willing to learn
Python or Perl
- Familiarity with basic computer science, such as data structures,
algorithms, programming languages; good knowledge of programming techniques is
a big plus.
- Good knowledge of English: reading and writing in scientific-technical domain.
- Willing to publish scientific papers in top journals. Willing to
acquire writing and publication culture. For PhD, publication in ISI JCR-indexed
journals is required for graduation.
- Willing to participate in the activities of the Lab, such as
organization of conferences, and in general willing to help is a plus.
- Willing to learn Spanish is a plus: it would greatly simplify your
life here. Knowing Spanish
in advance is not required.
- Patience: applying for an international program may require
considerable paperwork, including certified translations, etc.
- Finished previous degree: for Master's, finished BSc*
degree; for PhD,
finished Master's degree, though strong candidates can be admitted with BSc*
* BSc degree
or another undergraduate degree equivalent to the
licentiate in Mexico,
which usually takes 3–5 years to complete and is the highest degree
prior to Master's in your country. If in doubt, contact us, providing sufficient
information for us to decide.
- Publications at important conferences or journals.
- Upon graduation, entering a PhD program, with us or in other leading universities.
- Strong publication record in top journals.
degree and other national and international awards.
- Upon graduation, obtaining the title of
Researcher of Mexico or equivalent in your country.
Convinced. What's the next step?
Contact a professor who you prefer to have as advisor:
Ildar Batyrshin, or
Hiram Calvo (choose only one
please; simultaneous submissions will be rejected). Please include:
- CV with your complete publication record (if any) and skills
(if any), among other relevant data. Attaching the previous degree's
certificate and scores would be useful.
- Why do you want to work in the area of NLP? What do you know about it, or
what your experience in related topics is?
- Why specifically do you want
to study at CIC? What do you expect from it?
- What are your plans after you graduate? For example, if you apply for
Master's, do you plan to continue to PhD?
- Look at our
awards page; will your name shine on it upon finishing? How will you
help us to further improve the percent of students getting honors and awards?
- Topic: do you have any specific idea for your thesis? If so, please
give us some details. A separate document with a research proposal is a plus,
especially for PhD.
If we confirm that we consider you a strong candidate, please follow the
steps outlined in my description of our
(currently I have it mostly for PhD level; ask us for instructions for MSc). Please
feel free to contact us if in doubt.