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Linguistics is the field of inquiry that addresses the origin and nature of language, investigates language in all of its forms (spoken, written, signed), and describes how language is used wherever, whenever, and however it is practiced. Linguistics is comprised of several subfields including, but not limited to, applied and educational linguistics, formal and computational linguistics, historical and comparative linguistics, neuro- and psycholinguistics, and sociocultural linguistics.

The Linguistics Program offers a major and a minor to all Miami students. The program is housed in the English Department in cooperation with a number of departments that contribute to the program through their course offerings.

Program Highlights

  • Linguistics is a flexible program that encourages students to pursue their particular interests across a wide range of disciplines and periods.
  • Faculty members from other English Department programs and from a variety of departments across MU teach courses for the program. 
  • The Linguistics Program sponsors an annual conference for students to showcase their work.

Opportunities for Majors

  • English/Linguistics offers courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels to help prepare students to teach English as a Second Language (ESL) to adults.
  • In addition to classes offered in a wide variety of departments, we at Miami sponsor extra- and co-curricular speakers and events.

Our Minor Program Requirement

After Graduation

Linguistics graduates have excellent analytic skills and are therefore qualified for many careers that require in-depth understanding of how language works, and how it can best be utilized. Linguists work in many different occupations including software development, medicine, international relations, bilingual and foreign language education, TESOL, marketing, translation, law, politics, communications, journalism, and publishing. In fact, Miami graduates work in literacy programs, advertising, machine translation, on the mission field, and in lexicography, and computer programming. Others are employed by the government in cross-cultural centers, such as the Peace Corps, the U.S. Information Agency, and those who also obtained teacher certification are working in schools both in the United States and abroad. Still others have enrolled in graduate schools to continue their linguistics studies or work toward degrees in business or law. See Internship and Job Resources for Linguistics (Career Services).

Because linguistics touches so many areas of study, a English/Linguistics minor is useful for students majoring in:

  • English
  • foreign languages
  • sociology
  • anthropology
  • psychology
  • mathematics
  • communication
  • philosophy
  • computer science

Learning Outcomes of Our Program

  1. Demonstrate understanding of the theories, practices, and terminology of linguistic science;
  2. Demonstrate the ability to analyze language from different perspectives, depending on the focus of each individual course;
  3. Demonstrate the ability to summarize, synthesize, and critically evaluate relevant literature in linguistics, depending on the focus of each individual course.

Our Faculty