Linguistics Department

Frequently Asked Questions About Majoring in Linguistics

Are the courses required for the major offered every Fall and Spring semester?

Yes, all major core courses are offered each long semester.

What linguistics courses are generally offered over the summer?

LIN 306: Introduction to the Study of Language.

Linguistic majors may wish to use the summer term to take courses in a minor area or a foreign language. Other summer offerings may vary. 

How long does it take to complete a linguistics major?

Typically four semesters. Let's suppose you decide to be a Linguistics major at the beginning of your junior year and that, up until that point, you have taken no linguistics courses. An optimal plan for completing the required linguistics courses is as follows (please see Course Requirements page for further details):

  • Junior Year
    • Fall: LIN 306
    • Spring: LIN 344K, a LIN course of your choosing (can be lower-division)
  • Senior Year
    • Fall: LIN 372K (prerequisite LIN 344K), two upper division LIN courses of your choosing
    • Spring: LIN 345, LIN 372L
    • plus an additional upper-division LIN course

What is the career potential for a major in linguistics?

An undergraduate major in linguistics provides training that can be extremely helpful in a variety of careers. For example, if combined with mastery of a foreign language, a linguistics B.A. can be of great use to those planning careers in translating or in the teaching of foreign languages.

Likewise, the linguistics major at UT provides a strong foundation for those students who intend to seek a master's degree in other language-related fields, such as speech pathology, deaf education, audiology, or the teaching of English as a second language.

Finally, a linguistics major, if combined with training in computer science, can be useful to those pursuing careers in the computer industry, which is grappling with many technical problems related to natural language processing, such as automatic speech recognition, speech synthesis, and machine translation.

Highly-motivated students in linguistics may choose to enter graduate programs in linguistics. In recent years, the doctoral students from our own department have been following two career paths: they have either gone on to teaching positions in universities or they have elected to pursue careers in the computer industry.

If you have additional questions about Linguistics, please contact our undergraduate faculty advisor, John Beavers at

  • Department of Linguistics

    University of Texas at Austin
    305 E. 23rd Street STOP B5100
    Robert L. Patton Hall (RLP) 4.304
    Austin, TX 78712