The significance of linguistics in the context of the liberal arts education is twofold. On the one hand, linguistics is a highly developed field of knowledge whose achievements, challenges, and problems constitute an integral part of the modern world of ideas. On the other, understanding inner properties of language as a complex mechanism and awareness of the extensive tools of its description developed by linguistics provides a crucial background for a variety of disciplines whose subject involves language, such as analytical philosophy, anthropology, folklore, sociology, psychology, computer science, archeology, classic philology, and literary theory.

The linguistics major and special concentration are open to students in Columbia College and the School of General Studies. These programs of study give students an opportunity to become acquainted with theoretical ideas, conceptual apparatus, and research techniques involved in the study of language. For more information, please see Professors Meredith Landman or John McWhorter.

For more information about the Linguistics program, click here. For an overview of the 2024 - 2025 Linguistics course offerings, click here.