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College of Arts & Sciences

Careers & Internships for Linguists

Department Internship Coordinator: Dr. David Bell

What Do Linguists Do?

Linguists study both the universal properties and the particular structures of language. Some study the way in which children and non-native speakers acquire language. Linguists also study the geographical and social dialect variations of language.

Bilingual and bicultural communication is of vital interest to those who specialize in teaching English to speakers of other languages, as well as to teachers of other languages.

Some linguists explore the function of the brain and other biological mechanisms in linguistic communication, and some use computers to analyze languages and to model the way language users understand and produce linguistic communication.

What Applications Does Linguistics Have?

Linguistics has important applications to other professional fields. Rapid expansion in linguistics has involved fields such as anthropology, computer science, sociology, hearing and speech sciences, and education. Because linguistics plays a pivotal role in current studies dealing with the nature of the human mind, it finds particular application in the fields of psychology, education, and cognitive science.

What Kinds of Jobs Do Linguists Get?

Since linguistics is a relatively new field, there is no fixed area in which only linguists are employed. Most linguists are to be found teaching at universities or connected with organizations which involve research and teaching, development of teaching materials, or field study of the world’s languages.

A background in linguistics is useful in fields such as education, library science, artificial intelligence, psychology, and cognitive science.

A degree or specialization in teaching English to speakers of other languages is valuable in obtaining employment both at home and abroad as a teacher of English as a second or foreign language (TESL/TEFL) or as a teacher of any other language.

The need for bilingual education and English instruction in the public schools has led to a demand for trained linguists in many urban areas throughout the United States.

 

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College of Arts & Sciences