Program type:


On Campus
Est. time to complete:

2 years
Credit Hours:

Analyze and document endangered languages and create teaching materials or NLP solutions for under-resourced languages.
Do you have a passion for linguistics and would like to keep up with technology trends? This concentration provides a broad spectrum application of digital resources for language analysis. It covers analysis from the level of speech sounds to connected discourse marking, making you competitive for different fields that require linguists. Some Natural Language Processing (NLP) careers for linguists utilize language analysis skills with preferred but not required skills in programming. Through study of some under-resourced languages, students will also gain valuable skills to potentially create teaching materials for first, second, or low-resourced languages. This concentration provides broad background in language construction and linguistic competency.

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Why Earn a Language Documentation Linguistics Master's?

The world’s languages, approximately 7,000 of them, are disappearing at an alarming rate. Each language encodes unique knowledge about the ecologies – both animals and plants – of the societies that are centered on the languages spoken. To preserve and employ this data to further our understanding of this essential part of what it means to be human, linguists and interested members of language communities work together to collect and analyze linguistic data, and to preserve it in archives for use in the future.

UNT's Department of Linguistics offers courses on scientifically sound and ethically appropriate data collection methodologies, gold standard archiving practices, and methods for data mining. All these lead to research projects on non-Indo-European languages and provide students with extraordinary opportunities to learn about new cultures and customs.

Marketable Skills
  • Language structure analysis
  • Analyze language function and use
  • Analyze diverse populations' linguistic behaviors
  • Critical thinking
  • Formulate solutions to complex issues

Language Documentation Linguistics Master's Highlights

Our strengths lie in our established TESOL program and research areas in language variation and change, language documentation, and the linguistic analysis of literature. We also have a new focus of language technology and language data curation. Our international collaborations currently are with Mexico, India, Pakistan and China.
We also offer a Graduate Academic Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.
Beginning full-time students who meet all qualifications may apply for financial assistance from the UNT office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships. In addition, beginning and continuing students may apply for financial assistance from the Department of Linguistics.
Students will learn in-demand software and programming skills with state-of-the-art technology.
Students have flexible degree programs and can also choose a concentration in Teaching English in the Global Context or Computational Linguistics.
UNT Linguistics is supported by an active linguistics research community at UNT with ties across campus and with local, national, and international communities.

What Can You Do With a Language Documentation Linguistics Master's?

A degree in Linguistics makes students competitive for jobs in:

  • Advertising
  • Codes and code-breaking
  • Language education
  • Law — forensic linguistics
  • Marketing
  • Speech — language pathology and audiology

Because linguistics provides students with the skills to analyze language, companies such as Microsoft, Google and Apple also are eager to hire students with linguistics degrees.

Language Documentation Linguistics Master's Courses You Could Take

Endangered Languages (3 hrs)
Examines the factors that contribute to the process of language death through in-depth study of a specific language to illustrate mechanisms of language loss, methods of language documentation, and requirements for language stabilization and revitalization.
Sociolinguistics (3 hrs)
  • Study of the relationship of language and society as shown in the following areas: the ethnography of speaking (analysis of discourse), language variation and social class, pidgin and Creole languages, diglossia and multilingualism, ethnic varieties, language and sex, language policy and planning.
Tools and Methods for Lexicography and Language Analysis (3 hrs)
Creation of language documentation outputs, dictionaries, text collections and language description using lexicographic tools and endangered language data. Includes the use of automated language annotation and acoustic analysis.
Linguistic Field Methods (3 hrs)
Experience in the discovery of the phonology, morphology and syntax of a language through techniques of elicitation and analysis of data.
Language Typology and Universals (3 hrs)
Data-oriented comparison and classification of the languages of the world according to their morphological and syntactic characteristics (role relations, word order, causatives, relative clauses, comparison, etc.) Emphasis is on working through real data from many languages.
Studies in Historical Linguistics (3 hrs)
Introduction to the study of language as it changes over time.

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