Bachelor of Arts Degree


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: (i) Broaden and enrich students' experience of language, including the development of knowledge of the structure of a language different from the students' native language; development of an appreciation of inter- and intra-language variation; and achieve understanding of the relation of human language to human cognition and culture. (ii) Train 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. (iii) Train 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.

Major in Linguistics

The major includes both (a) linguistics and (b) language requirements.
(a) Students must complete L306, L307, L310, L431, and four electives, of which two must be at the 300-400 level. One elective may be from a related area. In addition to the linguistics above.
(b) Students must also complete [i] at least one 3 credit hour course of a foreign language above the 200 level, and [ii] either two courses in a non western European language (to be approved by the department), or L432, or L490. Linguistics can also be taken as a double major or as a minor (often in conjunction with a major in a social science area or in a language department).

For further information, please contact:

Dr. Clancy Clements (
Director of Undergraduate Studies

Krystie Herndon, MLS (
Undergraduate Academic Advisor

Should I take L103 or L303?

COAS Academic Bulletin: Linguistics