Derick de Souza
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As an academic discipline, linguistics delves into the intricate study of human language, seeking to define its intrinsic nature, establish its intricate connections to human thought, and distinguish it from other forms of communication. Beyond these foundational goals, linguistics endeavors to understand language development in children, explore variations in language, and elucidate how individuals employ language within diverse contexts for expression.  A master’s in linguistics degree serves as a comprehensive exploration of core linguistic domains, encompassing areas such as Phonetics, Lexicography, Phonology, Morphology, Grammar, Structuralism, Syntax, Semantics, Pragmatics, Orthography, Phonemics, Functional Grammar, Dialectology, Typology, Stylistics, and Rhetoric.

This multidimensional academic journey equips students with a nuanced understanding of linguistic principles and fosters critical insights into the intricacies of human expression. Furthermore, it opens up avenues for advanced studies, paving the way for doctoral pursuits in fields like education, linguistics, and research on literacy. In the sections below, the various facets of a master’s in linguistics have been explored.

Masters in Linguistics Online

Table Of Contents

Featured Online Programs

Southern New Hampshire University

PROGRAM: Online Masters Degrees

Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit, accredited institution with more than 3,000 on-campus students and over 60,000 online students, making us one of the fastest-growing universities in the country. Founded in 1932, we’ve been relentlessly reinventing higher education ever since and have gained national recognition for our dedication to helping students transform their lives and the lives of those around them.

We’re proud to provide affordable, accessible education that students can pursue on our 300-acre campus in Manchester, NH, over our innovative online platform or at our regional centers in Manchester, Nashua, Portsmouth and Salem, NH, and Brunswick, ME.

SNHU has earned the GetEducated.com Best Buy and Best of Business – Best Online Degree awards and is consistently ranked as a top Military Friendly® School by G.I Jobs®.

Best Master’s in Linguistics Online Programs

Finding the best master’s in linguistics online is hard to do because so many universities offer it. To ease the burden of finding one, OMC has compiled a list of the best online masters in Linguistics programs based on characteristics such as program format and flexibility, teaching experience, quality, the institute’s reputation, accreditation, research facilities, career assistance, etc. Consequently, the following are some of the best universities for a graduate degree in linguistics online:

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College Name & AddressTuitionGraduation Rate
#1
University of Georgia(oncampus)
Administration Building, Athens, Georgia 30602
$8,87887%
#2
University of California-Davis(oncampus)
One Shields Avenue, Davis, California 95616
$11,44286%
#3
University of Cincinnati-Main Campus
2624 Clifton Avenue, Cincinnati, Ohio 45221
$13,22473%
#4
Georgetown University(oncampus)
37th and O St NW, Washington, District of Columbia 20057
$53,13694%
#5
Texas Tech University(oncampus)
Broadway and University Avenue, Lubbock, Texas 79409
$6,78863%
#6
Liberty University
1971 University Blvd, Lynchburg, Virginia 24515
$7,93554%
#7
Northern Arizona University
1900 S Knoles Dr, Babbitt Administrative Center, Room 200, Flagstaff, Arizona 86011
$10,30957%
#8
Eastern University
1300 Eagle Rd, Saint Davids, Pennsylvania 19087
$13,37458%
#9
University of New Mexico(oncampus)
1700 Lomas Blvd NE, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87106
$5,92054%
#10
National University
11255 North Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla, California 92037
$15,48047%
#11
University of Massachusetts-Boston
100 Morrissey Boulevard, Boston, Massachusetts 02125
$18,43349%
#12
Texas A & M University-Commerce
2600 South Neal Street, Commerce, Texas 75428
$3,63043%

Source – Integrated Post Secondary Education Data System & University Data
*Tuition rates are for in-state and per year. Program specific rates may apply.
**NA – data not available

Understanding Master’s in Linguistics Online Programs

The curriculum of a Masters in Linguistic online program is meant to equip students to teach and do research in applied linguistics by allowing them to grasp the variety of difficulties that arise in language study.  One can research, engage with community-based groups, or prepare to teach in various settings in the United States and overseas, including public schools, K-12, adult education, and language schools. 

Apart from core coursework and elective courses, students are sometimes required to submit a thorough graduate project to get their Linguistics degree. Typically, graduates work on different parts of this project each semester and exhibit their work publicly during their final/graduating semester. Workshops, field study experiences, case studies, guest lectures, and seminars are all part of the study plan, intending to hone the abilities of linguistic and sociolinguistic analysis. In the further sections, we have elaborated on different components of the master in linguistics curriculum.

Curriculum and Skills Gained in Masters in Linguistics Programs

Psycholinguistics and sociolinguistics examine social psychology and linguistics in three distinct areas: general theoretical linguistics, applied linguistics, and interdisciplinary studies. These courses offer students a deep understanding of the many aspects of language acquisition and usage related to linguistic, cultural, and ideological aspects. While the curriculum differs from college to college, a few standard courses that one finds across curriculums include:

Language, Culture, and Identity

This course delves into the intricate connections between language, culture, and identity. Students explore how language shapes and reflects cultural norms, societal structures, and individual identities, fostering a nuanced understanding of the dynamic interplay between linguistic expressions and broader cultural contexts.

Theories and Principles of Language Teaching

Focused on pedagogical approaches, this course equips students with the theoretical foundations and practical principles essential for effective language teaching. From curriculum design to instructional strategies, they gain insights into fostering language proficiency and communication skills.

Psycholinguistics

Examining the psychological processes underlying language acquisition and use, this course explores how the mind comprehends, produces, and interprets language. Topics include language development, cognitive aspects of language processing, and the neurological basis of language functions.

Sociolinguistics

This course investigates the social dimensions of language, exploring how linguistic features intersect with societal factors such as class, ethnicity, gender, and regional variation. Students analyze language variation and change within diverse communities, enhancing their understanding of the social dynamics of communication.

Syntax

Syntax is the focus of this course, delving into the structural organization of sentences and phrases in languages. Students explore grammatical rules, sentence construction, and syntactic patterns, gaining proficiency in analyzing and understanding the syntax of different languages.

Semantics and Pragmatics

This course examines the meaning and use of language beyond its grammatical structure. Students explore semantics, which deals with linguistic meaning, and pragmatics, which investigates how context influences communication. The course enhances their ability to decipher intended meanings and navigate the subtleties of language use.

Here is a list of some additional linguistics graduate courses found across several curriculums, including:

  • Seminar in Phonology
  • Seminar in Cognitive Linguistics
  • Methods and Materials in Foreign Language Education
  • Integrating Culture into the Language Curriculum
  • Language, Culture, and Identity
  • Seminar in Discourse Analysis
  • Seminar in Sociolinguistics
  • Research Methods for Linguistics
  • Foundations of Bilingual/Multicultural Education
  • Testing in the Bilingual/ESL Classroom
  • Teaching Reading in the ESL Classroom
  • Technology in Language Education
  • Theories and Principles of Language Teaching
  • Teaching ESL: Methods and Approaches
  • Sociolinguistics

Some universities require students to pick up to 6 electives throughout their master’s program. Here is a list of electives generally found in linguistics masters programs:

  • Language Arts Instruction and English Language Development
  • Research in Elementary Education
  • Literacy Instruction for English Learners K-12
  • Bilingual/Multilingual Teaching Strategies
  • Literary and Rhetorical Genre Theory
  • Advanced Topics in Rhetoric and Composition
  • Educational Statistics for Research and Measurement
  • Introduction to Morphology
  • Language and Social Interaction
  • Introduction to Historical Linguistics
  • Languages in Contact
  • Bilingualism in the U.S.
  • Computational Linguistics
  • Selected Topics in Linguistics
  • Seminar in Phonetics
  • Seminar in Research on Second Language Acquisition
  • Seminar in Cognitive Linguistics (3)
  • Seminar in Discourse Analysis
  • Survey of Applied Linguistics
  • Issues in ESL Reading and Writing
  • Issues in ESL Listening and Speaking
  • English Structures for ESL/EFL Teaching
  • Introduction to TESL
  • TESL Testing and Assessment
  • English for Specific Purposes
  • Introduction to Celtic Languages
  • Acoustic and Instrumental Phonetics
  • Computers in Instruction
  • Theory and Research in Teaching ESL in Multilingual Classrooms
  • Structure of the Spanish Language
  • Language and Culture
  • Spanish Phonetics
  • Comparative Structure of Spanish and English
  • Spanish Dialectology
  • History of the Spanish Language
  • Seminar in Romance Linguistics

Upon completion of a master’s in Linguistics degree program, graduates acquire a diverse set of skills, including:

  • Conduct Original Research – Undertake independent research, applying language theories to new datasets, analyzing data, and drawing relevant conclusions.
  • Linguistic Concepts and Terminology – Use appropriate linguistic concepts and terminology to accurately describe language structures and phenomena.
  • Language Pedagogy – Demonstrate knowledge of language pedagogy and understanding of effective methods for teaching language skills.
  • Thorough Understanding of Linguistic Theory – Exhibit a comprehensive grasp of linguistic theory, encompassing phonetics, phonology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, language acquisition, and sociolinguistics.
  • Cultural and Sociopolitical Awareness – Recognize the cultural and sociopolitical dimensions influencing language, understanding the broader context of linguistic expressions.
  • Professional Relevance – Explain the relevance of linguistics in diverse professional settings, showcasing its applicability beyond academic contexts.
  • Critical Analysis of Linguistic Research – Read, analyze, and critically assess linguistic research, demonstrating advanced critical thinking and problem-solving skills in addressing linguistic concerns.
  • Psychosocial Factors in Language – Identify psychological and social factors influencing language acquisition and development.
  • Communication and Reflection – Communicate reflective and critically informed insights about the connections between language teaching, policies, and social justice.

Masters in Linguistics Degree Types

There are two ways of pursuing a Master’s in Linguistics online – the Master of Arts or MA, and the Master of Science, or MS. Both degree types cater to slightly different personal needs and career goals. Coursework and the program structure tend to be similar, and in most cases, schools generally offer a thesis and non-thesis option to choose from as well.

MA Linguistics

The MA Linguistics or Master of Arts in Linguistics approaches linguistics from a multi-disciplinary angle, touching upon other subjects such as anthropology, psychology, sociology, etc. This degree type is more suited for those who prefer a broader understanding of linguistics, which is spread across several disciplines. Knowledge of a foreign language is generally required to do an MA.

MS Linguistics

The MS Linguistics or Master of Science in Linguistics approaches linguistics from scientific and technical viewpoints. This degree type involves more research and data and focuses more on linguistics’s core. Knowledge of a foreign language is generally not required for an MS.

Specializations in Masters in Linguistics Programs

Concentrations and specializations are a sure-shot way of acquiring more profound knowledge in a specific sub-field of a subject, thereby ensuring better job prospects. They give students a competitive edge and make them readily employable. Masters in Linguistics online programs come in various specializations and concentrations, including:

SpecializationsDescriptionCareers
SociolinguisticsSociolinguistics explores the relationship between language and society, investigating variations in language use across different social groups, regions, and communities. It examines how gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status influence language patterns.Sociolinguists often work as researchers, language policy analysts, or consultants, studying language dynamics in diverse settings and contributing insights to address societal challenges related to language.
PsycholinguisticsPsycholinguistics delves into the psychological aspects of language, focusing on how humans process language, perceive linguistic stimuli, and acquire language skills. It explores cognitive processes underlying language comprehension, production, and development.Psycholinguists find opportunities as speech therapists, cognitive scientists, or researchers contributing to language disorders, language acquisition, and cognitive neuroscience.
Computational LinguisticsComputational Linguistics involves the application of computational methods to analyze and process natural language. It explores the intersection of linguistics and computer science, addressing challenges in natural language processing and machine learning.Computational linguists work as natural language processing engineers, data scientists, or researchers, developing algorithms and technologies to enhance language-related applications, including chatbots and language translation.
Applied LinguisticsApplied Linguistics focuses on the practical applications of linguistic theories, addressing real-world issues such as language teaching, translation, and language policy. It equips students with tools to solve language-related challenges in various professional contexts. Graduates may become language educators, translators, or language consultants, applying their expertise to facilitate effective communication and language use in educational and business settings.
Historical LinguisticsHistorical Linguistics studies the evolution and changes in languages over time, tracing language development through historical periods. It investigates language families, linguistic shifts, and the historical context shaping linguistic structures.Historical linguists pursue roles as language archivists, researchers, or language documentation specialists, contributing to preserving linguistic heritage and understanding language evolution.

 Timeline for Graduating from Masters in Linguistics Programs

Like most other master’s degrees, a master’s in linguistics online requires approximately two years to complete, taking 30 to 36 credits. However, while some colleges allow students to earn their degree in 12 to 18 months, others will enable them to extend their programs and finish in up to five years. Masters in Linguistics programs often offer various study options to accommodate different preferences and schedules:

  • Full-time: The standard option usually involves completing the program in approximately two years, typically taking 30 to 36 credits.
  • Part-time: For individuals balancing work or other commitments, part-time options are often available, allowing for a more extended completion timeline, typically up to five years.
  • Accelerated: Some programs offer accelerated timelines, enabling students to finish their degree in a shorter duration, such as 12 to 18 months. This option is more intensive but allows for quicker entry into the workforce.

Prospective students should check with specific programs to understand the availability of these study options and choose the one that aligns with their needs and preferences.

Accelerated timeline for Graduating from Masters in Linguistics Programs

Accelerated Master’s in Linguistics programs are designed for students who want to complete their degree expeditiously. These programs typically offer a shorter completion duration than traditional master’s programs. While the exact timeline can vary between universities, accelerated programs often allow students to earn their Master’s in Linguistics in 12 to 18 months. To qualify for accelerated programs, they must often meet specific criteria, such as a solid academic background or relevant professional experience. These programs may require a higher level of commitment, including full-time enrollment and a more intensive course load. Some institutions providing an accelerated graduate program in linguistics include:

Admission Requirements for Masters in Linguistics Programs

Applicants must meet specific admissions criteria and requirements to be admitted to a master’s in linguistics program. Along with standard requirements, some schools and programs require students to meet additional requirements in some situations. Sometimes, candidates for the Linguistics MA degree must be fluent in a language other than their native tongue. Some colleges require that native English speakers meet this requirement in one of three ways: (1) by enrolling in two semesters (of a minimum of 6 units total) of coursework in a language at an accredited community college, four-year college, or university after initial acceptance to the program; (2) by passing a departmental examination; or (3) by submitting a transcript showing that they hold a B. A with the department. Non-native English speakers may be excluded from this criterion if they have demonstrated proficiency in the language in their previous studies. Most masters in Linguistics online programs have the following criteria for admission:

  • A bachelor’s degree with a Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 3.0 or more
  • All Official Academic Transcripts
  • A Résumé
  • A Personal Statement or Statement of Purpose
  • Personal references (at least two)
  • A writing sample or any research work

Accreditation for Masters in Linguistics Programs

When a program or institution receives accreditation, it signifies that it has met or exceeded the standards to which it must conform. It serves as a symbol of reliability, trustworthiness, and superiority. An accredited Master in Linguistics online program is required for the degree to be accepted by the industry. While programmatic accreditation is available at specific schools, most are regionally accredited, making regional accreditation an equally viable option. 

The organizations that provide regional accreditation to universities in the U.S. are:

  1. New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) [4]
  2. Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS) [5]
  3. Higher Learning Commission (HLC) [6]
  4. Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) [7]
  5. Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) [8]
  6. Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) [9]

Graduate students in Linguists should always look for a program or school accredited by at least one accrediting body. More information on accreditation can be found in the Accreditation Guide.

No GRE Masters in Linguistics Programs

Several Master’s in Linguistics programs waive the GRE (Graduate Record Examination) requirement for admission. While specific policies may vary among institutions, many graduate programs acknowledge that standardized test scores may not be the sole predictor of a student’s success. As a result, they adopt a holistic approach to admissions, considering factors such as academic performance, letters of recommendation, personal statements, and relevant experience. Some colleges providing a no gre master in linguistics programs include:

Free Linguistics Courses

By the word ‘linguistics,’ it is easy to assume that it is a confined subject, but quite the opposite is true. Linguistics is a vast subject that encompasses a wide range of interdisciplinary topics and works in various sectors and industries. Therefore, courses in a master’s of Linguists tend to cover much ground, making this degree unique. For this reason, free master’s in linguistics online programs are impossible, although free courses are plenty. These free courses and programs can help master’s students and professionals enhance their knowledge and skills. Here are a few sites offering free content in linguistics:

CourseMiracles of Human Language: An Introduction to Linguistics[12] 
Provided byCoursera 
DescriptionThe course taught by Professor Marc van Oostendorp from Leiden University; this course provides a comprehensive exploration of various aspects of human language. Students delve into the fundamental structures of language, including phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, and semantics, gaining insights into how sounds, words, and sentences are organized across different languages.
CourseMultilingual Practices: Tackling Challenges and Creating Opportunities from University of Groningen-Class Central [13]
Provided byClass Central
DescriptionThe course offered by the University of Groningen is a comprehensive exploration of multilingualism and its impact on individuals, societies, and educational systems. Designed to address the challenges and opportunities associated with multilingual practices, the course provides valuable insights for a diverse audience, including educators, policymakers, language professionals, and individuals interested in linguistics.
CourseSemantics of First-Order Logic [14]
Provided byedX
DescriptionBy the end of the “Semantics of First-Order Logic” course, participants should have a solid understanding of the semantic foundations of first-order logic and its applications in various domains. The course provides valuable insights for those interested in logic, mathematics, computer science, or philosophy.

How to Pay for Master’s in Linguistics Online Programs

The high cost of online education burdens most potential graduate students. An online master can cost up to $100,000, making them too expensive for most people. Fortunately, various financial aid options can help with the high expense of graduate education. Some of these are:

Scholarships

Students who deserve them can get financial aid through scholarships that lower or eliminate the cost of their education. When selecting a scholarship recipient, the institution looks at the student’s biography and background, including letters of recommendation, work experience, and academic records.

Grants

Students in need of financial support can apply for grants. Grants differ from scholarships in that they are based on financial need rather than academic performance. Universities that offer need-based financial aid also consider their grades and test results.

Graduate Assistantships

Teaching Assistantships– Tuition-free or discounted-fee teaching assistantships are available in exchange for providing services to the university. Working as an assistant to a professor could include helping with instructional requirements, working in a lab or workshop, or teaching and demonstrating to undergraduate students.

Student Loans

Students may be eligible for loans from the federal government, banks, or private lenders, which require them to make interest payments. It’s also essential to remember that missed or delayed payments would almost surely lead to increased student debt.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA[15] can determine financial aid eligibility.

Scholarships for masters in linguistics students

A few scholarships that master’s students in linguistics can apply for are:

The Linguistic Society of America (LSA) Fellowship[16]

The Linguistic Society of America (LSA) Fellowship is a distinguished award aimed at supporting graduate students dedicated to advancing the field of linguistics. This fellowship provides financial assistance to those pursuing advanced degrees in linguistics, fostering their research and academic endeavors.

Award: $1,500 to $4,500

Application Deadline: March, annually

The Endangered Language Fund Grants[17]

The Endangered Language Fund (ELF) Grants are designed to support projects that document, preserve, and revitalize endangered languages. These grants are particularly relevant for individuals in linguistic research and community-based language initiatives. The ELF aims to safeguard linguistic diversity by providing financial assistance to projects addressing the challenges faced by endangered languages worldwide.

Award: up to $30,000

Application Deadline: May, annually

David J. Weber Fellowship for the Study of Southwestern America [18]

The David J. Weber Fellowship for the Study of Southwestern America is a prestigious fellowship offered by the Clements Center for Southwest Studies at Southern Methodist University (SMU). This fellowship is designed to support scholars, including those in linguistics, whose research focuses on the history, culture, and development of the southwestern United States.

Award: up to $50,000

Application Deadline: January, annually

Careers and Salary Outlook for Master’s in Linguistics Online Graduates

Many professional linguists specialize in a particular branch of linguistics and work in various fields. Some people prefer to work in academia, conducting research and interacting with students. Others work in technology, assisting large corporations with text and speech recognition, natural language processing, and other tasks. Linguists can also teach one or more foreign languages or work for the government. In general, Linguistics graduates work in academia as foreign language teachers, psycholinguists, sociolinguists, diplomats, text-to-speech developers, machine translation professionals, language rights advocates, and other positions.

A linguistics degree might also be helpful in editing and proofreading. Popular books and works by prominent authors are being translated into English from their original languages. Accurate communication necessitates a thorough knowledge of both the target language and English as a second language, where a master’s in linguistics plays a considerable role.

Another field in which linguistics expertise is required is speech and language therapy. Before attempting to edit or improve another person’s vocabulary, one must be thoroughly aware of the intricacies of language. It is possible to overcome many linguistic issues, including dyslexia and stammering, by working with a qualified therapist.

Masters in Linguistics online degree holders with multi-linguistic skills are also needed by private businesses, international agencies, and non-profit organizations to facilitate efficient communication. Governments need communicators who can work with people at all levels of the organization, including multinationals. Due to the growing threat of terrorism worldwide, interpreters are also helpful for security reasons. Trained linguists can discretely interpret cryptic data transmitted by communication and navigation systems.

Some typical roles that master in linguistics students can look forward to after graduation include

  • Linguistics Researcher or Scientist
  • University Professor or Lecturer
  • Language Consultant
  • Computational Linguist
  • Translator or Interpreter
  • Lexicographer
  • Speech-Language Pathologist
  • Content Developer or Editor
  • Intercultural Communication Specialist
  • Language Policy Analyst

Here are a few examples of job titles, salaries, and career prospects for linguistics graduates:

OccupationTechnical Writers[19]
SkillsCritical-thinking, detail-oriented, imagination, teamwork, and technical skills.
Median Annual Salary$79,960
Job Growth (up to 2032)7% (faster than average)
Job DescriptionTechnical writers are crucial in translating complex technical information into clear and accessible documentation for users. They collaborate with product designers and developers to understand user needs, ensuring that products and instructions are user-friendly.
OccupationSpeech-Language Pathologists[20]
SkillsAnalytical, communication, compassion, critical-thinking, detail-oriented, and listening skills. 
Median Annual Salary$84,140
Job Growth (up to 2032)19% (much faster than average)
Job DescriptionSpeech-language pathologists (SLPs) are crucial in addressing speech, language, and swallowing difficulties. Their responsibilities include evaluating the severity of these challenges, identifying clients’ treatment goals, and devising individualized treatment plans tailored to specific functional needs.
OccupationInterpreters & Translators[21]
SkillsBusiness, communication, concentration, cultural sensitivity, dexterity, interpersonal, and listening skills. 
Median Annual Salary$53,640
Job Growth (up to 2032)4% (as fast as average)
Job DescriptionInterpreters and translators play a vital role in facilitating communication across different languages. Their responsibilities include converting concepts, style, and tone from the source language to the target language and ensuring equivalence in meaning. They compile information and technical terms into glossaries and terminology databases to assist in accurate renditions and translations.
OccupationWriters and Authors [22]
SkillsAdaptability, creativity, critical thinking, determination, persuasion, social perceptiveness, and writing skills. 
Median Annual Salary$73,150
Job Growth (up to 2032)4% (as fast as average)
Job DescriptionWriters and authors play a pivotal role in crafting engaging content for diverse audiences. Their responsibilities include selecting intriguing subjects and composing fiction or nonfiction scripts, biographies, and various formats. They conduct thorough research to ensure factual accuracy and authentic details, producing advertising copy for different media platforms.

Certifications and Licensure for Master’s in Linguistics Online Students

Certification offers objective evidence that an individual possesses the knowledge and skills necessary to provide a quality service, such as interpretation, translation, teaching, etc. Depending on the career a master’s in linguistics online graduate wants to take up, a suitable certification will always provide a competitive edge and better job prospects. Some professional certifications that students of masters in linguistics include

The National Center for State Courts[23]

The National Center for State Courts (NCSC), for example, provides a certificate in interpretation that enables individuals to perform the three major types of court interpreting: sight translation, consecutive interpreting, and simultaneous interpreting. 

American Translators Association[24]

The ATA certification, offered by the American Translators Association (ATA), is one of the most well-respected credentials for translators in the industry. It is the sole commonly accepted indicator of translation proficiency in the United States.

Language Testing International[25]

Another respected certification is from Language Testing International (LTI), based on the ILR Scale[26]. The ILR Scale is how the US Federal Government defines and refers to language ability. It was developed by the Federal Government’s Inter-Agency Language Roundtable from basic definitions used by the Foreign Service Institute. The scale covers various abilities, with six levels ranging from 0 (No Practical Proficiency) to 5 (Native or Bilingual Proficiency), with ‘plus’ levels at each stage. Apart from the ILR Scale, the LTI offers language certification for[27]:

  • Bilingual Professionals – Speaking only
  • ACTFL Test of English Proficiency (TEP)
  • Bilingual Professionals – Multiple skills
  • WL & Bilingual Teacher Certification
  • Federal Government Contractors & Employees with ILR requirements
  • Programs with ACTFL requirements
  • General Proficiency ACTFL
  • Commercial-Individual and Government-Individual Organizations

In linguistics, licensing requirements are typically not applicable as they are in more regulated professions like law or medicine. Linguists usually do not need to obtain a specific license to practice or pursue research in the field. However, it’s essential to note that licensing requirements can vary by location and the particular career path within linguistics.

Additional Resources for Master’s in Linguistics Online Students

Languages are ever-evolving and develop into newer ways of expressing oneself. Understanding the nuances of a language, its meaning, interpretations, etc., is always crucial for a linguist. For graduate students and working professionals to make the most of their master’s in linguistics, they should meet with others, exchange views and ideas, network, research, and do much more to widen their horizons and deepen their knowledge of linguistics. Here are a few resources that are sure to be helpful in the pursuit of a master’s in Linguistics online:

  1. American Translator’s Association (ATA) [28]  – The American Translator’s Association (ATA) provides its members access to current industry resources and education to keep their competitive advantage in the global economy. The association hosts publications, conducts events, and includes news and student & client services.
  2. Linguistic Society of America (LSA) [29] – The Linguistic Society of America’s (LSA) primary goals are to advance the Society’s mission via scholarly communication, community building, professional development, and external relations. The programs of the LSA are focused on Publications, Meetings, and Institutes, Professional Resources and Recognition, Advocacy and Public Policy, and Public Education.
  3. SIL International [30] – SIL International is a global, faith-based non-profit that works with local communities worldwide to develop language solutions that expand possibilities for a better life. It is involved in approximately 1,350 active language projects in 104 countries. SIL has several resources, such as English Language Lessons, Glossaries of Linguistic Terms, Language & Culture Archives, International Publications, and Software & Fonts.
  4. All Things Linguistic [31] – All Things Linguistic, as the title suggests, is a site that provides a wide range of resources for students, teachers, and linguistics professionals. Primarily a blog, All Things Linguistic provides tips on careers, updates, and developments in linguistics, podcasts, interviews, insights, and more.
  5. Linguist List [32] – The Linguist List is operated at Indiana University, Department of Linguistics. The list aims to provide a forum where academic linguists can discuss linguistic issues and exchange linguistic information. The site offers support to graduate students in linguistics and summer interns, who serve in return as editors of the list and help with the development and maintenance of the list server and website.

FAQs About Master’s in Linguistics Online Programs

What does one learn in a linguistics degree?

A linguistics degree involves the study of human language, aiming to understand its nature, connection to human thought, the distinctions between human language and other communication forms, and more. Core areas covered in linguistics programs include Phonetics, lexicography, Phonology, Morphology, Grammar, Structuralism, Syntax, and others, providing students with a comprehensive foundation.

Is a background in linguistics required for a master’s in linguistics online program?

Are there research opportunities for graduate students in linguistics programs?

Can I pursue linguistics studies online?

Is obtaining a master’s in linguistics degree worthwhile?

What career opportunities are available after completing a master’s in linguistics?

Are there language proficiency requirements for linguistics programs?

Is a thesis or capstone project required for a master’s in linguistics?

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