Major in Linguistics 2013-2014

The Linguistics department reserves the right to change major requirements at any time. Please check with the Linguistics department or the CU Boulder catalog for the most current listing of requirements. You are subject to the requirements in effect at the time you declare your major as an Arts & Sciences degree seeking student.

In addition to completing the general requirements of the College of Arts and Sciences, students pursuing a degree in Linguistics must complete a total of 32 hours of study in general Linguistics, including 5 in a natural language (for exceptions see below). Language study is taken through other departments. (Students must complete the following courses with a grade of C- or better, and maintain an overall and a linguistics grade point average of at least a 2.00 (C).)

Courses required for a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Linguistics at CU-Boulder and Colorado Community College applicable courses.

CU-Boulder Required Courses Colorado Community College Applicable Courses

General Linguistics

  • LING 2000 (3) Introduction to Linguistics
  • LING 3100 (3) Language Sound Structures
  • LING 3430 (3) Semantics
  • LING 4420 (3) Morphology and Syntax

    Natural Language

    Students must complete with a grade of C- (1.70) or better a minimum of 5 credit hours of study of a natural language other than English (including signed languages used by deaf communities). The 5 credit hours offered in satisfaction of this requirement must be at the 3000 level or above for widely-taught languages (French, German, Latin, Spanish), or at the 2000 level or above for less-widely-taught languages (Arabic, American Sign Language, Farsi, Chinese, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish). Only courses taught in the language in question, and focused specifically on language-learning, may be used for this requirement. A list of all the approved courses is available from the Department of Linguistics or the departmental undergraduate advisor. The natural language requirement may be satisfied by examination or waived for foreign students whose native language is not English; in these cases, students must still meet the college’s minimum major requirement of 18 credit hours of upper-division course work and 30 credit hours overall in the major. Students who wish to have their language requirement waived must obtain the consent of the undergraduate advisor before registering for the fall term of the junior year.

Students at the Colorado Community Colleges could begin their study of a natural language by taking courses in one of the following natural languages numbered 111, 112, 211 and 212: American Sign Language, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, or Latin.

Students will still need to take 5 hours of coursework at the 3000 level or above at UCB.


A minimum of 15 elective hours must be completed with a grade of C- (1.70) or better. Courses may be chosen from the following:

  • FREN 3020 (3) French Phonetics through Musical Performance
  • FREN 3010 (3) French Phonetics and Pronunciation
  • JPNS 4030 (3) Japanese Syntax
  • JPNS 4080 (3) Kanji in Japanese Orthography
  • JPNS 4070 (3) Second Language Acquisition of Japanese
  • LING 1000 (3) Language in U.S. Society
  • LING 1010 (3) Study of Words
  • LING 1020 (3) Language of the World
  • LING 2400 (3) Language and Gender
  • LING 3005 (3) Cognitive Science
  • LING 3220 (3) American Indian Languages
  • LING 3500 (3) Language/ Public Interest
  • LING 3545 (3) World Language Policies
  • LING 3810 (1) Undergraduate Seminar (may be repeated once for credit)
  • LING 4100 (3) Perspectives on Language
  • LING 4220 (3) Language and Mind
  • LING 4450 (3) Introduction to Formal Syntax
  • LING 4560 (3) Language Development
  • LING 4610 (3) English Structure for TESOL
  • LING 4800 (3) Language & Culture

Other upper division linguistics courses may also be chosen if available; graduate courses may be taken with permission of the department.

NOTE: The department recommends that prospective majors complete LING 2000 and at least two 1000-level foreign language courses (in the same language) by the end of the sophomore year, unless the student’s foreign language proficiency is already advanced.

NOTE: The fall semester of the junior year should include LING 3430, a 2000-level foreign language course, and a linguistics elective or LING 4420. It must also include LING 2000 if that was not taken earlier. The spring semester of the junior year should include LING 3100, a linguistics elective, and a further 2000-level foreign language course (if needed to prepare the student for the required upper-division foreign language hours).