Language, spoken and written, is one of the most important factors separating humans from other animals. It both unites and divides us culturally, ethnically, socially and personally. Linguists study the structure, variation and use of language among different cultural groups. Work in linguistics also draws on research in other disciplines, including psychology, anthropology, computer science, literature, neuroscience, education and others.
Many graduates find careers that provide practical outlets for their linguistic training, such as computer science, teaching English as a second language, foreign language teaching, lexicography or bilingual-bicultural education and curriculum development.
You will begin with an introductory course in linguistics and coursework in the foreign language of your choice. At the upper-division level, you will study advanced grammar, linguistic analysis, syntax and other technical topics; you will also, depending on your personal focus, take courses in other disciplines to complement your study. These courses include offerings such as anthropological linguistics, linguistic analysis of specific languages and the philosophy of language.