The field of linguistics is concerned with the study of human language as a universal part of human behavior and thinking. Linguists seek to understand the common properties of human language, the place of language in human life and society, and the ways in which language is organized to fulfill the needs of the people it serves and the functions it performs. They take as their field of inquiry language in all its different forms and manifestations around the world.
A major in linguistics offers a diverse and flexible program of study that prepares students for any analytical work that requires collection of information or data, analysis of it and presentation of results.
The undergraduate curriculum in linguistics has the following goals:
- Broadening and enriching students’ experience of language, including the development of knowledge of the structure of a language different from the students’ native language; developing an appreciation of inter- and intra-language variation; and the achievement of understanding of the relation of human language to human cognition and culture.
- Training students in the description and analysis of linguistic structure, including the organization and presentation of linguistic data and the use of diagnostic criteria in linguistic analysis.
- Training students to evaluate critically the relation between principles and theories of language organization and use and their factual and descriptive bases, and to evaluate the legitimacy and plausibility of arguments and conclusions based on linguistic data.
Undergraduate Programs of Study
We offer different degrees, not only giving students the opportunity to study linguistics as a whole, but also subfields such as computational linguistics and African linguistics.