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About Linguistics

What is Linguistics?

Students of linguistics are interested in the general question "what is human language?". In order to answer this question, we look at language from a variety of viewpoints:

  • how languages differ from one another
  • the ways in which they are alike
  • how languages are learned
  • how they change over time
  • what historical relationships exist between and among different languages

We may examine a variety of very different languages, or we may focus our attention on specific details of a single language. We examine the structural properties of language, such as grammar and pronunciation, as well as the social, cultural, psychological, and physical aspects of language use. Linguistics is commonly considered to be one of the cognitive sciences, bridging between the humanities and the social sciences. The field of Linguistics also maintains important links with research in Speech Technology, Education, Communication Disorders, Language Pedagogy, and Communication.