Linguistics Program

Linguistics is the systematic study of language in general. It investigates the structure and the function of language, the ways in which languages differ, and those properties which all languages share. As a result, it provides the tools for exploring any particular language, as well as for trying to explain numerous aspects of language use. Further, by comparing and contrasting individual languages, linguists have been able to make important discoveries which contribute to our understanding of the overall nature of the human mind.

Linguists investigate both spoken and written language. They examine data from the 21st century as well as from earlier historical periods. They study the informal usage of everyday people engaged in everyday conversations, as well as the careful, formal prose of published documents. All varieties of all languages are of interest to linguists since all follow certain tendencies and all exhibit characteristic patterns.