The overall mission of the Department of Linguistics graduate programs is to train students to succeed in careers related to the descriptive and theoretical study of language in academia, government or industry. To help students achieve their professional goals, the department provides training in all aspects of linguistic research, as well as a comprehensive grounding in the properties of languages, research methodologies, contemporary linguistic theories, and skills such as academic writing and the effective dissemination of research results.
To fulfill its mission, the department offers a PhD in Linguistics, an MA in Linguistics with several foci, and a MS in Computational Linguistics. Students applying to the PhD program may apply with either a bachelor's degree or a master's degree - a master's degree is not a requirement for applying to the PhD program.
The Department of Linguistics recognizes that it operates on the territory of the Seneca Nation, a member of the Haudenosaunee/Six Nations Confederacy. Because of this, it places a special priority on supporting research on Haudenosaunee languages that is in line with its overall mission and, in particular, research led by members of the Haudenosaunee nations.
Before applying, we invite you to learn more about our degree requirements:
December 15: applications are due for all prospective PhD students wishing to be considered for funding.
Prospective PhD students wishing to be considered for funding are encouraged to consult the faculty listing to see which faculty have research interests that overlap with theirs and to contact them before applying to get feedback on their plans to pursue a PhD in the Department of Linguistics.
Please see here for information regarding funding for the current application cycle.
March 1: applications are due for all international MA/MS applicants and international PhD applicants with external funding.
Review of other graduate program applications will continue until processing in time for Fall admission becomes unfeasible.
Required Application Documents:
The Department of Linguistics has adopted a GRE-blind admission process. Until further notice, please if possible do not upload or transmit GRE scores with your application.
Our graduate courses focus on breadth and empirical/experimental methodologies. Students receive training in traditional disciplines, such as syntax, semantics, pragmatics, phonetics, and phonology, in addition to substantial training in other areas, such as language typology, psycholinguistics, computational linguistics, and historical and contact linguistics. All students are required to take at least two semesters of Methods classes that include courses in Field Methods, Quantitative Methods and Statistics, Corpus Linguistics, and Computational Linguistics.
We encourage our students to explore interdisciplinary research within the Center for Cognitive Science, and many of our students receive extensive training in Cognitive Science through collaborations with the Department of Psychology or Computer Science and Engineering programs.
In recent years, sixty students have graduated with Linguistics Master's and Doctoral degrees. Of these, roughly half the population joined us from overseas, including students from Asia, Latin America, Africa and Europe. We believe a diverse student body contributes to a wide range of perspectives and lively cross-cultural exchange, both of which serve to strengthen our department and our discipline.
Graduate students in the Linguistics Department are automatically members of the Graduate Linguistics Association. The GLA coordinates events (both academic and social), assists students with disputes against faculty, and tries to better our department through constant dedication to helping fellow students.