Why study Linguistics?
Language involves everything we do every day, so studying what language is and how language works provides insights into everyday life. It is a useful and rewarding subject for anyone who is interested in languages of any kind, including computer and “invented” languages, as well as anyone interested in teaching and learning second/foreign languages.
Linguistics complements other disciplines in the arts, such as English, communication studies, sociology, anthropology, education, languages and law, and other disciplines in the sciences, such as psychology, neuroscience, computer and information science, and maths.
You will be taught how to identify and provide analyses of linguistic phenomena and how to construct and justify arguments for particular analyses.
Although many students of Linguistics study another language, Linguistics at Otago does not assume any prior knowledge of linguistics or of any languages other than English.
Linguistics is the discipline that directly addresses what language is, why languages are similar and different, how languages develop, how languages work and how languages are taught and learned.
Linguistics is useful in any area in which language and communication are important – and that's everything!
It is particularly useful for language teaching, interpreting/translation, editing and writing, computer programming and speech therapy.
Past linguistics graduates are now government ministry officials, lawyers, editors, copywriters, technical writers, journalists, film directors and producers, translators, interpreters, speech therapists, and lecturers, teachers, and curriculum and materials developers.
The TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) minor specifically equips you to teach English abroad and at home in language schools and other non-state institutions.