Program Type: Baccalaureate
Requirements for this program are current for Fall 2018
Required credits to graduate with this degree: 120
Required credits within the major: 48 to 53
Degree: Bachelor of Science
The B.S. in linguistics prepares students to undertake the study of language in a rigorous, scientific manner. The major offers basic and advanced courses in the sound, structure, and meaning of language, and it teaches students the fundamental methods of scientific inquiry. The curriculum focuses on both the internal place of language in the human mind and brain, as well as the external role of language in communication and culture. Along the way, students will consider many topics in linguistics, such as syntactic structure of languages, semantic and pragmatic meaning, language acquisition, language disorders, language evolution, dialects and sociolinguistic variation, language and gender, computational linguistics, and many others. With topics such as these in mind, students will be trained to form research questions, gather data, and make arguments based upon their observations. They will also gain experience working with a wide range of languages and diverse cultures. The program will also require a background in science and mathematics consistent with a bachelor of science degree, which will allow students a straightforward double major in many of the established science majors at the University. There is a diversity of employment opportunities for linguistics majors. The analytical skills and experience with language makes linguistic majors particularly appealing to computer and software companies, as writers and analysts of all types, in education, in projects such as speech recognition and machine translation, and as preparation for advanced study in all of the liberal arts, social sciences, and computer sciences disciplines. Finally, the United States Department of Homeland Security and federal law enforcement agencies routinely hire employees trained in linguistics.