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Linguistic Studies B.A.

Linguistics is the scientific study of the nature and use of language. Investigate its role in society, its structures and their cognitive representation, and language learning and teaching.
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Linguistics students analyze the structure of languages in various academic and professional areas. Pictured here is an analysis of prepositions in English that could be used in activities such as research, teaching or cross-language work.

About this Program

  • Take courses in areas such as how languages of the world are similar and different, how individuals and groups use language in society, how grammars and sound systems are structured and develop over time, how children learn language, how multiple languages co-exist in the mind and brain, how linguistics is used to solve criminal cases and how to teach languages.
  • Apply linguistics tools and develop employment skills by being a language ambassador, working with the community to document under-documented languages, teaching a language and engaging with the public in scientific outreach activities .
  • Conduct research and benefit from the mentorship of our world-renowned faculty.
  • Receive expert advice from our faculty in exploring possible career paths.
  • Pursue scholarship and fellowship opportunities through the Syracuse Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Engagement (SOURCE) and apply for the prestigious Boren and Fulbright awards under the guidance of faculty members.
  • Hone your linguistic skills by studying in Italy, Spain, Chile or France, or study in a different location through one of our World Partner programs.
  • Attend and contribute to cultural activities specific to the many cultures that make up our campus.

Program Information

Degree Type






College or School

Career Path


Average number of students per class.

Student research linguistics projects awarded through the SOURCE program in the last three years.
Exterior of Hall of languages building

College of Arts and Sciences

The College of Arts and Sciences (A&S) is Syracuse University’s first and largest college. As the home of the liberal arts, our internationally recognized programs provide the cornerstone of a Syracuse University education with 50+ majors in the natural sciences and mathematics, the humanities and the social sciences (in partnership with the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs).
Explore the College


In addition to studying language, you’ll take required coursework in linguistic, phonological and syntactic analysis. Then explore at least three of the following areas within the broader field of linguistics: psychology and biology of language, language and culture in society, logic and language, history and structure of language, and language pedagogy.

  • Analyze claims about human communication and innate language competence in humans.
  • Explain claims about specific languages and the universal principles that underlie the knowledge of all languages.
  • Analyze the structure of one or more particular languages and the cultural context associated with its use.
  • Apply social, cognitive, physiological and historical methods of linguistics to related areas, including language and thought, language acquisition, language comprehension, language production, language use and language teaching.

  • Linguistic Analysis
  • Dimensions of Bilingualism and Multiculturalism
  • Forensic Linguistics
  • Indigenous Languages: Their Past, Present, and Future
  • Meaning and Communication

Extracurricular Opportunities


Language Matters Research Initiative

The Language Matters Research Initiative brings together scholars, artists and community experts in the areas of cultures and languages across the curriculum, “Language in Action” in the community, language and human security, performance, cultures and identity, and digitally open borders. Events are open to the public and feature panels, keynote speakers, roundtable discussions, and live and video performances to showcase each strand’s research and envision future directions.

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Community service

Language Teaching Practicum

The language teaching practicum provides opportunities for students to teach English to diverse constituencies. Held at various local community-based organizations and online with a community partner in Bogota, Colombia, students work in professional teaching teams to plan and implement classes for adult English language learners.

Hands-on learning opportunities

Linguistics Class Projects

In many linguistics classes, students complete original projects, collecting and analyzing their own data. They also have the opportunity to present those projects in class and other public forums such as the College of Arts and Sciences Research Festival.

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Learn more about this program

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