Doctoral Degree

Admission Requirements

Admission to the Ph.D. program will be based upon evaluation of: (1) previous academic record, (2) level of achievement in the Graduate Record Examination General Test, (3) three letters of recommendation, and (4) previous exposure to linguistics and related course work, (5) compatibility of interests with those of the faculty.

Fields of Study

The doctorate is normally pursued in areas such as phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, historical linguistics, African linguistics, computational linguistics, applied linguistics (including second-language acquisition), and sociolinguistics. Other concentrations, including a combined degree with cognitive science, are also possible with the approval of the department.

Course Requirements

A minimum of 90 credit hours, including dissertation. Specific requirements include one graduate course each in phonetics, phonology, syntax, historical linguistics, sociolinguistics, and language acquisition, plus at least four courses in linguistics at the 600-700 levels, one of which must be L642 or L643 for students in general linguistics. L653, the first half of the field methods sequence, may not be counted if it is used in partial fulfillment of the language structure requirement. Additional course requirements may be set by the student’s advisory committee.

Minor

The choice of a minor field should be agreed to by the student’s advisory committee. The specific requirements for the minor are established by the department that grants the minor. The student is responsible for ascertaining what those requirements are and for meeting them.

Advisory Committee

All students in the Ph.D. program will select an advisory committee consisting of at least three faculty members, one of whom should normally represent the student’s minor field. The committee must be selected no later than the end of the semester following the completion of the master’s degree at Indiana University, or, in the case of students entering the program with master’s degrees from other institutions, no later than two semesters after matriculation.

Students will plan their programs with the advisory committee, which will be responsible for counseling students with regard to the qualifying examination, setting the examination, and administering it.

Foreign Language Structure

Knowledge of the structure of a language other than English and outside the student's general language family (choice to be determined in consultation with the student's advisory committee).

Research Tools Requirements

(1) Reading or speaking knowledge of a foreign language relevant and applicable to doctoral study in the student's research area, and (2) proficiency in a research skill appropriate to the student's research area, including, but not limited to reading knowledge in an additional foreign language, statistics, logic, programming, methods in social science research, and field methods. Proficiency is normally demonstrated by two semesters of appropriate instruction. Students may not count field methods classes for both the foreign language structure and research skill requirement. The choice of appropriate research tools is to be determined in consultation with the student's advisory committee.

Qualifying Examination

Comprehensive; the examination is on two distinct areas of linguistics and may require the student to write two papers (of publishable quality), take two take-home or sit-down exams, or some combination of these. Specific focus and scheduling of the examination is determined by the student’s advisory committee.

Research Proposal

After nomination to candidacy, the student will select a research committee composed of no fewer than three members of the Department of Linguistics faculty and an outside representative. This committee must approve the proposed dissertation topic.

Final Examination

Oral defense of dissertation. This defense is open.

Ph.D. in Linguistics
with a Concentration in Computational Linguistics

Course Requirements

A minimum of 90 credit hours, including dissertation. Specific requirements include L545, L645, L615, L555, one graduate-level course each in phonetics, phonology, syntax, and at least two additional courses in linguistics at the 600-700levels. Where appropriate, additional courses may be assigned by the student's advisory committee.

Research Tool Requirements

The student must demonstrate proficiency (1), in the basics of discrete mathematics or mathematical linguistics, which can be met by courses such as L611 or Q520; and (2) in programming techniques, with working knowledge of at least two programming languages.

Qualifying Examination Requirements

The qualifying exam is comprehensive; the examination is on two distinct areas of computational linguistics and/or linguistics. At least one of the qualifying examinations must entail a practical software artifact. The artifact may be a program, a computational grammar, an implemented scheme for corpus annotation, or some other approved artifact. The other examination may take the form of a written paper (of publishable quality) or a written exam. Specific focus and scheduling of the examination is determined by the student┐s advisory committee.

(All other requirements are the same as the above for the Ph.D. in Linguistics.)

Ph.D. in Linguistics
with a Concentration in African Languages and Linguistics

Course Requirements

A minimum of 90 credit hours, including dissertation. Specific requirements include A501, L653-L654, one graduate-level course each in phonetics, phonology, syntax, and historical linguistics, plus at least two additional courses in linguistics at the 600-700 levels. Where appropriate, additional courses may be assigned by the student’s advisory committee.

Foreign Language Requirements

Three languages: (1) proficiency in two foreign languages, one of which must be an African language and the other normally French or German; and (2) knowledge of the structure of a foreign language or language group other than Romance or Germanic.

(All other requirements are the same as the above for the Ph.D. in Linguistics.)

Awarded Ph.D.s