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Majors & Minors

Linguistics Major | Linguistics Minor

General Distribution Requirement

All linguistics courses count toward the general distribution requirement in social science except for LING 236, LING 309, LING 311, LING 375, LING 376, LING 377, and LING 488, which count toward humanities.

General Education Requirements

Courses that meet the general education requirements in writing, quantitative thinking, internationalism and U.S. identities and differences will be posted on the Registrar's web page in advance of registration for each semester.

Additional information regarding the general distribution requirement and the general education requirements can be found in the graduation requirements section of this catalog.

Honors Program

The linguistics department participates in the honors program. Eligibility requirements, application procedures and specific project expectations for the department are available from either the department office or the Academic Programs and Advising Office.

Topics Courses

LING 194, LING 294, LING 394, LING 494 

Past offerings include: Time and Space in Language; The Human Voice; Southeast Asian Linguistic Typology; Computational Methods in Linguistics.  To be announced at registration.

Independent Study

The department offers independent study options in the form independent projects, internships, preceptorships and Honors independent projects. For more information contact the department and review the Curriculum section of the catalog.

Linguistics Major

Major Requirements

  1. Required courses:
    LING 100 - Introduction to Linguistics
    LING 104 - Sounds of the World's Languages
    LING 200 - Syntax
    LING 205 - Phonology
    LING 300 - Linguistic Analysis
  2. Language courses: Any two language courses beyond the college-wide four-semester graduation requirement.
  3. One course in an outside discipline as it relates to language, to be chosen from the list below or determined in consultation with a departmental faculty member.
    COMP 123 - Core Concepts in Computer Science
    COMP 484 - Introduction to Artificial Intelligence
    JAPA 488 - Translating Japanese Literature: Theory and Practice
    SPAN 309 - Introduction to Hispanic Linguistics
    SPAN 332 - Spanish in the United States
    SPAN 373 - Translation: Theory/Practice
    SPAN 376 - Spanish Dialectology
    PHIL 111 - Introduction to Symbolic Logic
    PHIL 311 - Philosophy of Language
    PSYC 180 - Brain, Mind, and Behavior
    PSYC 242 - Cognitive Psychology
    PSYC 378 - Psychology of Language
  4. Two departmental elective courses chosen from the following list.
    LING 175 - Sociolinguistics
    LING 201 - Historical Linguistics
    LING 206 - Endangered/Minority Languages
    LING 208 - The Human Voice
    LING 220 - Language and Music
    LING 225 - 100 Words for Snow: Language and Nature
    LING 280 - Topics in Linguistic Anthropology
    LING 304 - Experimental Phonetics

    LING 194 - Topics Course
    LING 294 - Topics Course
    LING 394 - Topics Course
    LING 494 - Topics Course
  5. Capstone course: LING 401 - Field Methods

Linguistics Minor

Minor Requirements

The minor in linguistics consists of five courses, with the following stipulations:

  • LING 100 - Introduction to Linguistics is required
  • Only one course from an approved study away program will be considered.
  • Only one course taken at Macalester may be from outside of the department. (This does not count the course taken while on study away.)

Declare a Major or Minor

Use the Linguistics Major & Minor Worksheet to declare a linguistics major or minor.