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Exploring language's complexity and structure

About Us

Combining humanistic and scientific concerns

What is Linguistics?

Collaborating across departments and disciplines

Our Research

Major & Minor

We offer degrees in Linguistics as well as many research opportunities for undergraduates

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Graduate Studies

Information on our cross-disciplinary PhD program and our three MA programs. 

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Our research investigates the structure, complexity and diversity of human languages.

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Botswana bushman group.

Feature Story

The Year of Indigenous Languages

The United Nations declared 2019 the International Year of Indigenous Languages. The goal is to raise awareness of the world's Indigenous languages, not only to benefit the people who speak these languages, but also in recognition of the important contributions these communities make to our world’s rich cultural diversity. Rochester's Language Documentation and Description (LDD) master's program trains linguists to work with communities around the globe to help them document their languages and cultures.

Learn more about LDD

Photo of Jeff Runner.

Feature Story

Jeffrey Runner, professor and dean

The Department of Linguistics is proud to announce that Professor Jeffrey Runner has been named dean of the College. In this role, he oversees the academic and cocurricular programs for undergraduates in Arts, Sciences & Engineering at the University. “I’m interested in enriching students’ classroom experience by increasing opportunities for independent research, community-based learning, and international experience,” he says.

Learn more about Dean Runner

Linguistic Colloquia


Why Linguistics?

Linguistics workshop

Linguistics training provides students with skills that are important in a rapidly changing society. They learn how to use analytic and theoretical tools, work in collaborative environments, and collect, document, and organize complex research data on human language. They also gain a deep appreciation and understanding of the value of a culturally and linguistically diverse environment.

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Recent News

Grimm to Give Talk at SinFonIJA 12 Conference

September 4, 2019

Scott Grimm is giving the invited plenary talk at the Workshop on Number, Numerals and Plurality tak ...

Dunlap Receives ELDP Grant

September 4, 2019

Alexandrine Dunlap receives an ELDP grant to document the endangered Bantu language Gweno of Tanzani ...

Nadine Grimm Receives Panini Award

September 4, 2019

Nadine Grimm receives the Panini Award for her "Grammar of Gyeli" and is an invited plenary speaker ...

Mentors make a difference for first-generation, minority students

August 8, 2019

Maya Abtahian, an assistant professor of linguistics is one of five University faculty mentors ...

Welcome Asia (Joanna) Pietraszko!

March 28, 2019

The Department of Linguistics welcomes Assistant Professor Asia (Joanna) Pietraszko beginning in Jul ...

International Conference on LD&C 2019

February 6, 2019

The 6th International Conference on Language Documentation and Conservation (ICLDC), Connecting Comm ...

Scott Grimm: Invited to talk at Tübingen

October 16, 2018

Scott Grimm has been invited to talk at the workshop "Challenges to Compositionality: Mismatches bet ...

Aaron White: Invited talk at Stanford

October 12, 2018

Aaron White presents the Linguistics Colloquium on "Distribution, Inference, and Event Structure", i ...

Want more information about the Department of Linguistics? Contact us.