Linguistics to offer two new minors

Starting next month, students will be able to declare one of two new linguistics minors, the Language and Cognition Minor or the Linguistics and Education Minor.

The Language and Cognition Minor focuses on the interplay between language and the neural processes supporting it. Students will learn to use scientific thinking and research skills to generate hypotheses and test predictions about communication and language use, ranging from intelligent systems, including the human mind, to language processing, perception, and action, with applications for information technology and the study of artificial intelligence.

Students who minor in Language and Cognition will expand and enhance their knowledge and understanding of both Linguistics and Cognitive Science.  Moreover, they will acquire technical skills necessary for graduate studies in Computational Linguistics, Linguistics, and Cognitive Science/Neuroscience in addition to employment in various fields within research and technology.

The Linguistics and Education Minor will significantly advance students’ understanding of linguistic and cultural diversity, of the powers of language to discriminate and to empower, and of the ways in which these fields of Linguistics and Education inform each other. The set of courses in this minor are not just for future K-12 teachers but for all "educators", broadly defined. Such study is critical not just for teachers of and about language, but for educators of all subject areas. More broadly, however, this set of courses provides all students with insights into ways in which the education system shapes social perceptions of languages and of language users, ways that affect language policy.

The scientific study of language, known as linguistics, has long been recognized as important within education, and ongoing work continues to investigate how linguistics can be most productively applied in education to best reflect current research on language structure, language variation, language change, language acquisition, and language as a social tool. An understanding of how language works, of the ways in which language and culture are intertwined, and of the ways language is and has been used to discriminate, to transform, and to empower are critical components for educators. 

These minors can be combined with a linguistics major. Reach out to Sara Helms,, for more information.