Program of Study (CAS Bulletin)

Linguistics (2016 - 2018)

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Joint Majors with a Foreign Language

Joint Major in Anthropology and Linguistics

Joint Major in Language and Mind

Minor

Honors

Joint Honors

Major in Linguistics

The major consists of nine 4-point courses (36 points) as follows:

  • Either Language (LING-UA 1) or Language and Mind (LING-UA 3, formerly 28)
  • Sound and Language (LING-UA 11)
  • Grammatical Analysis (LING-UA 13)
  • Introduction to Semantics (LING-UA 4)
  • Phonological Analysis (LING-UA 12)
  • One of the following: Language and Society (LING-UA 15); African American English I: Language and Culture (LING-UA 23); Language in Latin America (LING-UA 30); or Pidgin and Creole Languages (LING-UA 38)
  • Three courses freely chosen from the offerings of the department

Majors and joint majors should begin with the first three requirements above, since other courses have these as prerequisites or presuppose their content. Note that Sound and Language (LING-UA 11) is only taught in the fall; it is a prerequisite for Phonological Analysis (LING-UA 12).

No grade lower than C (or any course taken pass/fail) may be counted toward the major or toward a joint major. If any course is used to fulfill the major or minor requirements of any other department or program at NYU, it may not be used simultaneously to fulfill the requirements for any of the linguistics majors.

All linguistics majors, joint majors, and combined majors must select and register for linguistics courses with the advice of the director of undergraduate studies in the linguistics department.

Joint Majors with a Foreign Language

The Department of Linguistics offers joint majors with the Departments of French, German, Italian, and Spanish and Portuguese. The major with Spanish requires a total of ten 4-point courses (40 points); the majors with the other languages require a total of nine 4-point courses (36 points). All courses must be completed with a grade of C or better.

The linguistics portion of the joint foreign language majors is always satisfied by taking the following five courses (20 points):

  • Either Language (LING-UA 1) or Language and Mind (LING-UA 3, formerly 28)
  • Sound and Language (LING-UA 11)
  • Grammatical Analysis (LING-UA 13)
  • A total of two additional courses from two different fields of linguistics, chosen from the following:
    • Historical linguistics (LING-UA 14, LING-UA 17, LING-UA 76)
    • Sociolinguistics (LING-UA 15, LING-UA 18, LING-UA 30, LING-UA 38)
    • Phonology (LING-UA 12)
    • Semantics (LING-UA 4)
    • Computational linguistics (LING-UA 3, LING-UA 6)
    • Psycholinguistics (LING-UA 5, LING-UA 43, LING-UA 54)

French requires four additional 4-point courses (16 points) as follows:

  • One advanced language course chosen from:
    • Spoken Contemporary French (FREN-UA 101)
    • Phonetics (FREN-UA 103)
    • Translation (FREN-UA 107)
    • Advanced Techniques of Translation (FREN-UA 108)
    • Acting French (FREN-UA 109)
    • Business French (FREN-UA 110)
  • One course in advanced written French (usually Written Contemporary French, FREN-UA 105)
  • Two courses in French literature, in French, to be determined in consultation with the director of undergraduate studies in the French department.

German requires four additional 4-point courses (16 points) as follows:

  • An advanced conversation or composition course chosen from:
    • German Conversation and Composition (GERM-UA 111)
    • Advanced Composition and Grammar (GERM-UA 114)
  • One additional course at the 100 level in conversation, composition, or culture
  • Introduction to German Literature (GERM-UA 152)
  • An additional advanced literature course, in German, to be determined in consultation with the director of undergraduate studies in the German department.

Italian requires four additional 4-point courses (16 points) as follows:

  • Advanced Review of Modern Italian (ITAL-UA 30)
  • One advanced language course chosen from:
    • Conversations in Italian (ITAL-UA 101)
    • Italian Through Cinema (ITAL-UA 103)
    • Advanced Composition (ITAL-UA 105)
    • Creative Writing in Italian (ITAL-UA 107)
    • Italian Through Opera (ITAL-UA 108)
    • Translation (ITAL-UA 110)
  • Two advanced courses in either Italian literature or culture and society, to be determined in consultation with the director of undergraduate studies in the Italian department.

Spanish requires five additional 4-point courses (20 points) as follows:

  • Critical Approaches to Textual and Cultural Analysis (SPAN-UA 200)
  • And four more advanced courses chosen with the advice of that department’s director of undergraduate studies.

Students may apply one advanced Spanish conversation course toward the major. Note that Advanced Grammar and Composition (SPAN-UA 100) does not count toward the major; this course (or equivalent, or placement) is a prerequisite for entering the major.

Joint Major in Anthropology and Linguistics

This joint major emphasizes the complementary nature of anthropological and sociolinguistic approaches to language. Students are required to take 20 points (five 4-point courses) each from the Department of Anthropology and the Department of Linguistics, for ten courses (40 points) total. A grade of at least C is required in every course for it to be counted toward the joint major.

Required courses in anthropology are:

  • Human Society and Culture (ANTH-UA 1)
  • Anthropology of Language (ANTH-UA 17)
  • Either Cultural Symbols (ANTH-UA 48) or Language, Power, and Identity (ANTH-UA 16)
  • Two other cultural or linguistic anthropology courses approved by the director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Anthropology.

Required courses in linguistics are:

  • Language (LING-UA 1)
  • Language and Society (LING-UA 15)
  • Two courses chosen from among the following:
    • Bilingualism (LING-UA 18)
    • Sex, Gender, and Language (LING-UA 21)
    • African American English I: Language and Culture (LING-UA 23)
    • Language and Liberation at Home in the Caribbean and Abroad (LING-UA 26)
    • Language in Latin America (LING-UA 30)
  • A fifth course in linguistics, which may be an additional course from the above list or another course that the department offers, chosen in consultation with the director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Linguistics.

Joint anthropology-linguistics majors should also consult with Professor Bambi Schieffelin in the Department of Anthropology and Professor Renée Blake in the Department of Linguistics for aid in developing their program of study.

Joint Major in Language and Mind

This major, intended as an introduction to cognitive science, is administered by the Departments of Linguistics, Philosophy, and Psychology. Ten courses (40 points) are required (four in linguistics, one in philosophy, four in psychology, and one additional course). All must be completed with a grade of C or better.

The linguistics component consists of these four courses:

  • Language and Mind (LING-UA 3, formerly 28)
  • Two courses chosen from the following:
    • Introduction to Semantics (LING-UA 4)
    • Phonological Analysis (LING-UA 12) [Note that Sound and Language (LING-UA 11) is a prerequisite for Phonological Analysis and is only offered in the Fall Semester.]
    • Grammatical Analysis (LING-UA 13)
  • One course, chosen from the following:
    • Introduction to Semantics (LING-UA 4)
    • Psycholinguistics (LING-UA 5)
    • Sound and Language (LING-UA 11)
    • Patterns in Language (LING-UA 6)
    • Form, Meaning, and the Mind (LING-UA 31)
    • Propositional Attitudes (LING-UA 35)
    • Neural Bases of Language (LING-UA 43 or PSYCH-UA 300)
    • Linguistics as Cognitive Science (LING-UA 48)
    • Learning to Speak (LING-UA 54)
    • Introduction to Morphology at an Advanced Level (LING-UA 55)

The philosophy component is a choice of one of the following three courses:

  • Minds and Machines (PHIL-UA 5)
  • Logic (PHIL-UA 70)
  • Philosophy of Language (PHIL-UA 85)

The psychology component consists of four courses:

  • Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences (PSYCH-UA 10)
  • Cognition (PSYCH-UA 29)
  • One course chosen from among the following:
    • The Psychology of Language (PSYCH-UA 56)
    • Language Acquisition and Cognitive Development (PSYCH-UA 300)
    • Neural Bases of Language (PSYCH-UA 300)
    • Speech: A Window into the Developing Mind (PSYCH-UA 300)
  • One course chosen from among the following:
    • Perception (PSYCH-UA 22)
    • Introduction to Cognitive Neuroscience (PSYCH-UA 25)
    • Laboratory in Perception (PSYCH-UA 44)
    • Laboratory in Human Cognition (PSYCH-UA 46)
    • The Psychology of Language (PSYCH-UA 56)
    • Language Acquisition and Cognitive Development (PSYCH-UA 300)
    • Neural Bases of Language (PSYCH-UA 300)
    • Speech: A Window into the Developing Mind (PSYCH-UA 300)

The tenth course will be an additional course from the lists above that has not already been taken to satisfy the departmental components. Joint majors should consult with the respective directors of undergraduate studies of the participating departments.

Minor in Linguistics

Four courses (16 points) in linguistics with a grade of C or better in each course. Courses taken pass/fail do not count. If any course is used to fulfill the major or minor requirements in any other department or program at NYU, it may not be used simultaneously to fulfill the requirements for the linguistics minor.

Recommended Work outside the Department

To meet standards currently set in the linguistics field, as well as graduate school admission requirements, students majoring in linguistics are advised to gain competence in the following areas during their undergraduate studies: (1) one or more foreign languages, (2) psychology, for issues of language and the mind, and anthropology, for issues of language and culture, (3) mathematics or logic, for an understanding of modern algebra and mathematical logic, (4) philosophy of language, and (5) one or more computer languages. Majors and minors should avail themselves of the NYU study away programs. Note that any course substitution or transfer credit toward a required course for the major must be confirmed by a letter from the director of undergraduate studies.

Honors in Linguistics

The Department of Linguistics offers an honors track. The requirement for graduation with honors in linguistics is an honors thesis of 40 to 50 pages, typically the culmination of a year’s work, and two advanced courses chosen with the honors thesis adviser.

Students who are excelling in the linguistics major are highly encouraged to develop an honors project as early as the second semester of their sophomore year. It is expected that students who pursue honors work in the Department of Linguistics have sufficient preparation and background (i.e., high-level coursework) in a field of linguistics, which is not always the case for students in the joint majors with French, German, Italian, and Spanish.

Admission to the honors program is by application in the second semester of junior year. To be eligible, a student must have a GPA of 3.65 overall as well as in linguistics. Applications are due to the director of undergraduate studies by April 15 and must include a one- to two-page description of the topic that the student wishes to investigate in the senior thesis. The student must identify a faculty member in the Department of Linguistics who has agreed to supervise the project, and the description of the thesis is written in consultation with this faculty adviser.

Joint Honors

The Department of Linguistics offers joint honors in all programs for which it offers joint majors: language and mind, anthropology and linguistics, French and linguistics, German and linguistics, Italian and linguistics, and Spanish and linguistics.

For the requirements of joint honors in anthropology and linguistics, students should see Professor Renée Blake.

For the requirements of joint honors in language and mind, students should follow the same procedure for honors in linguistics, except that their proposal should identify faculty members from two departments in the language and mind major (linguistics, philosophy, and psychology) who will be co-advisers. The thesis topic must reflect contributions to both disciplines.

Students interested in pursuing joint honors in linguistics and French, German, Italian, or Spanish should consult with the director of undergraduate studies in linguistics, as well as in the language department, in or before the second semester of their junior year.