Linguistics is the scientific study of language structure and use. As a uniquely human trait, language is a complex system of elements (such as sounds and words) combined in systematic ways to accomplish specific purposes in specific contexts. There are approximately 7,000 languages spoken in the world today, and one in five American residents report speaking a language other than English at home. In Texas, this percentage is even higher: approximately one in three residents speaks a language other than English at home. In addition, with the advent of advanced digital technologies and social media, vast amounts of information are shared at a fast pace with diverse audiences. An understanding of what language is and how to use it effectively is therefore a powerful tool for any professional who wants to become an effective communicator in a world marked by multilingualism, multiculturalism, and globalization.
Linguistics can prepare you for careers in a variety of areas, including the following:
The mission of the interdisciplinary linguistics minor at LCU is to equip students for successful work in multicultural and multilingual settings. The minor is housed in the Honors College, and it requires 18 hours of coursework, including the following:
LIN 2301: Introduction to Linguistics
This course introduces students to principles of language and linguistic analysis. Students learn about the major subfields of linguistics, including phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, sociolinguistics, historical linguistics, and language acquisition. The course is helpful for students who want to evaluate spoken or written language data, learn and/or document another language, or pursue further studies in linguistics.
LIN 3302: Phonetics and Phonology
This course introduces students to the speech sounds in human language, including their production, classification, and organization. Students learn to recognize and transcribe sounds using the International Phonetic Alphabet as well as analyze the patterns for speech sound distribution in various languages.
LIN 3301: Grammatical Analysis
This course introduces students to grammatical analyses of language with a focus on word formation (morphology) and sentence structure (syntax). Students learn to classify words, identify inflectional and derivational morphemes, and apply various patterns of word formation. In addition, students learn to describe constituent structure, identify syntactic categories, and apply phrase structure rules and other syntactic tools in cross-linguistic data analyses.
LIN 4301: Sociolinguistics
This course introduces students to the study of language in the social and cultural context. Students explore such topics as linguistic variation, regional and social dialects, the effect of culture on language, gender differences in language use, bilingualism, code-switching, and other linguistic phenomena in situations where multiple languages and cultures are in contact.
LIN 4302: Second Language and Culture Acquisition
This course introduces students to the processes of language and culture acquisition with an emphasis on adult learners. Students learn the structure of the second language acquisition process for adult learners and the internal and external factors associated with this process. In addition, students explore the distinct but related process of second culture acquisition with the goal of identifying and applying optimal practices for both successful language and culture acquisition.
LIN 3352/4352: Special Topics in Linguistics
This course introduces students to various interdisciplinary topics in theoretical and applied linguistics with the goal of broadening students’ knowledge and skills related to language study in multiple disciplines. Some of the topics include the following: gender and language, bilingualism in the U.S., first and second language acquisition, second language and ESL teaching methods, language and the brain, language and writing, conversational storytelling, forensic linguistics, psycholinguistics, historical linguistics, semantics, pragmatics, computational linguistics, and other language-related topics with a strong multicultural component.
Note: Up to 6 hours of language-related coursework from other disciplines can count towards the linguistics minor with the approval of the linguistics minor coordinator.
For questions or further information, please contact Dr. Olga Pahom at email@example.com