The mission of the Department of Linguistics is to (1)
engage students and faculty in linguistic theory and empirical
research, (2) provide professional-level teacher education to novice
and experienced language teachers, (3) offer language instruction to
learners of Arabic, Chinese, English, Indonesian, Japanese, Swahili and
a small selection of additional African and Southeast Asian languages.
The three components of the department’s mission are
described in more detail below.
- Engage students and faculty in
linguistic theory and empirical research. The department
values theoretical advances as well as exploratory and
hypothesis-driven empirical research on the nature of language,
language use, and language acquisition. The department’s stance is that
a solid understanding of linguistic theory and research is valuable not
only to researchers but also to language learners and language
teachers. The department offers courses in several core areas of
linguistic inquiry: phonology, syntax, semantics and pragmatics, second
language acquisition, sociolinguistics, historical linguistics, and
psycholinguistics. The faculty of the department are active researchers
who provide mentoring to their students. All B.A. and M.A. majors are
required to complete a rigorous empirical research project in an area
of linguistics or applied linguistics in order to graduate, and our
students’ research projects are showcased during our annual Conference
of the Ohio University Linguistics Department (COULD), which has grown
to include students and faculty from other departments and other
universities in Ohio. Our students are also encouraged to present their
work at other regional, national, and international professional
conferences. Graduates of the department are qualified for admission
into advanced academic programs in linguistics and related fields, and
have the knowledge and skills to carry out independent research.
- Provide professional-level teacher
education to novice and experienced language teachers.
Students in our teacher-education program represent diverse backgrounds
and are recruited from around the world. The department offers
teacher-education modules at both the undergraduate and graduate
levels, and provides extensive professional education in language
pedagogy, computer-assisted language learning (CALL), and language
assessment to its M.A. majors. Through global partnerships with foreign
institutions, our students also have opportunities to receive practical
training as teachers of English as a foreign language in authentic
foreign settings. Students who successfully complete our
teacher-education program are competitive candidates for high-level
language teaching positions around the world.
- Offer language instruction to learners
of Arabic, Chinese, English, Indonesian, Japanese, Swahili and a small
selection of additional African and Southeast Asian languages.
The department’s ESL and EFL offerings generate revenue, attract and
help retain international students at OU, offer outreach services to
non-English speakers living in the community (including spouses of
international students and faculty), and prepare international students
for enhanced academic performance and future professional success. The
department’s core foreign-language offerings provide students with new
language abilities, multicultural experiences, opportunities to study
abroad, and the ability to fulfill language requirements necessary for
graduation. Our offerings in African and Southeast Asian languages
bring in government revenue, provide vital interdisciplinary support to
the Center for International Studies, and allow students to gain
cultural insights and linguistic skills that are critical to the U.S.
government’s foreign diplomacy efforts.