Linguistics, Minor

Program Code: LING_UMNR

Program Requirements

Requirement Credits
Requirements for the Minor 18

Requirements for the Minor

A grade of C or better is required for all courses in the minor, as specified by Senate Policy 59-10.

Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
LING 402Syntax I3
LING 404Phonology I3
Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
LING 1The Study of Language Keystone/General Education Course3
or LING 100 Foundations of Linguistics Keystone/General Education Course
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Supporting Courses and Related Areas: Require a grade of C or better
Select 9 credits from LING offerings9

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee’s unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.


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Liberal Arts Academic Advising
Use the Liberal Arts Majors and Minors web page to see the contact information for the specific adviser(s) of this program

Career Paths

Courses in linguistics provide students the opportunity to practice and hone skills such as analytical reasoning, critical thinking, formulating hypotheses and argumentation, so linguistics students can easily pursue a variety of different career paths. The skills gained by our students provide good preparation for careers in information science and technology, education (especially language teaching), speech pathology, or audiology. Linguistics also provides good preparation for legal studies, law enforcement and related careers, as well as fields requiring precise use of language, such as advertising, publishing, or journalism.  Students interested in international business or global studies would also benefit from studying linguistics.


Information Science and Technology: Linguistics training can provide tools to be applied in areas of speech recognition, text-to-speech synthesis, artificial intelligence, natural language processing, computer-mediated language learning, and other technological domains.

Language Teaching: Students who study linguistics are uniquely positioned to understand language structures, particularly grammar and pronunciation. These skills transfer very well into the language classroom, whether teaching English as a Foreign Language, or helping English speakers learn another language. Other career paths would include those in the fields of advertising and publishing, law enforcement and intelligence, legal and forensic consultation, speech pathology, speech and hearing science, government services and NGO work.

Opportunities for Graduate Studies

A linguistics minor or major is useful to students wanting to pursue the following types of graduate studies: M.A. or Ph.D. in Linguistics M.A. or Ph.D. in a particular language, or language education M.A. (or Ph.D.) in communication sciences and disorders (speech pathology, audiology, etc.) M.A. or Ph.D. in Computer Science Law School (JD) At Penn State, the Linguistics program offers a Dual-Title Doctoral Degree in Language Science to graduate students enrolled in the doctoral programs in Communication Sciences and Disorders, German, Psychology, or Spanish. Dual-title degree students receive interdisciplinary training in the theoretical and methodological approaches of several disciplines (i.e., linguistics, psychology, speech-language pathology, and cognitive neuroscience).



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