Calling all Linguistics alumni: Please take a few minutes for this
BU Linguistics alumni survey. Thanks so much!


Some exciting news : A new Linguistics Program launches

July 1, 2015:

The CAS Linguistics Program now unifies degree offerings at the BA, MA, and PhD levels. This website will be reorganized in the near future to reflect the change. In the meantime, information about the graduate programs in Applied Linguistics can still be found here: If you have any questions about Linguistics at BU, don't hesitate to contact the Program Director, Prof. Carol Neidle, or the Associate Director and Director of Graduate Studies, Prof. Jonathan Barnes. Thanks for your patience as we reorganize the website.

Major announcement about Linguistics curriculum

Effective Fall 2016, Linguistics course numbers will be changing! Please read about the details here:

These details will appear on the Link as of February 17, 2016. The ling website is currently being updated.

Linguistics Colloquium: "What's 'that' in French"

Presentation by Dominique Sportiche

The abstract is available here:
This is also a Facebook event:

BU Linguistics Colloquium Series

See details on the Events page!


Congratulations to our Spring 2016 UROP recipients !

Sarah Lawson:
"Language Contact and Transfer Between Andean Spanish and Bolivian Quechua: Regional and Social Perspectives" (working with Prof. Myler)

Using a corpus of sociolinguistic interviews with Quechua and Spanish bilinguals, Sarah will investigate phonological, lexical, and syntactic phenomena of language contact and transfer between Andean Spanish and Quechua. She will examine the linguistic constraints which affect several variables (including the realization of /r/ and the use of certain past tenses), and she will use the results of an attitudinal survey to investigate how these variables relate (or don’t relate) to speaker attitudes and orientations toward indigenous culture.

James Sbordone:
"Phonetic description of Southeastern Pomo, an endangered language of California" (working with Prof. Chang)

Jimmy will be working on an acoustic analysis of recordings of Southeastern Pomo, a severely endangered language historically spoken in northern California. These data will ultimately contribute to a phonetic description of the idiolect of the last living fluent speaker as well as a diachronic comparison between her speech and the speech of the preceding generation (captured on archival recordings). The plan is (currently) to look at both stop consonants and the vowel space.

Dallas Walter:
"Korean fricatives: Diachronic changes in phonetic enhancement strategies" (working with Prof. Chang)

Dallas will be carrying out analyses of younger and older Korean speakers' production of the fricative contrast between fortis /s*/ and non-fortis /s/. The recordings are from an experiment conducted earlier this year, which was designed to examine the phonetic properties that speakers exaggerate in these fricatives when speaking in the 'clear speech' register. The phonetic data that Dallas compiles will provide evidence to support a phonological classification of the non-fortis fricative in the context of the Korean laryngeal system.

Summer 2016

The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) is now accepting applications for Summer 2016. The deadline for undergraduates to apply for stipend support and/or supplies funds is noon on Wednesday, March 2. See See

Newsletter: Fall 2015

Check out our Fall Newsletter:

Honors Program in Linguistics

Linguistics majors who qualify are invited to apply for admission into the Honors program. There are also honors programs available for the various Linguistics joint majors (described here). Those of you who are not yet juniors might consider applying in the future.

The Linguistics Honors program requires 14 courses (rather than 12, as for the standard major), to include 3 at an advanced level; these must be completed with a GPA of at least 3.7. Students who complete the program successfully will graduate "with Honors in Linguistics."

Honors program application forms: Linguistics, Linguistics & Philosophy, French & Linguistics, Italian & Linguistics, Japanese & Linguistics, Spanish & Linguistics. [Applications for admission as of Spring 2016 will be accepted from 12/1/2015 to 1/20/2016 for students who will be graduating between January 2017 and September 2017 (inclusive).]

A variety of co-curricular activities will be organized for program participants. Complete details are available from this page: Students who may be interested in this program are also strongly encouraged to discuss this with their faculty advisor and/or Prof. Neidle.

Please note that the pdf documents linked in above are based on course numbering in effect through Spring 2016. Updated versions with the new course numbers will be provided soon.

Commencement 2015

Congratulations to our 2015 graduates! See some pictures on our Facebook page:

Video records of recent Linguistics presentations

Have you missed one of our recent invited lectures? Members of the BU community can watch the video and follow along with the slides :-)

Joint Majors in Linguistics & French/Italian/Japanese/Spanish

Brochures for the joint majors in French/Italian/Japanese/Spanish & Linguistics. You can print them out yourself (2-sided, flip short side) or stop by to pick one up from the entryway to 621 Commonwealth Ave.:,,

In addition to our joint major in Linguistics & Philosophy (Hegis code: 1514), we are now pleased to be able to offer joint majors that combine the study of linguistics with that of language, literature, and culture. Here's some informationabout these majors (and the corresponding honors programs):

French & Linguistics (Hegis code: 1147)
Italian & Linguistics (Hegis code: 1148)
Japanese & Linguistics (Hegis code: 1149)
Spanish & Linguistics (Hegis code: 1150)

There is also the Linguistics major itself, of course (Hegis code 1505).

You can now change your major or minor declarations online:
Be sure to list all your majors and minors if you are making any kind of change.

Please note that the pdf documents linked in above are based on course numbering in effect through Spring 2016. Updated versions with the new course numbers will be provided soon.

For further information, contact Prof. Neidle.

Prof. Danny Erker studies the Spanish spoken in Boston

He is featured in BU Today:

Danny Erker, in East Boston’s Maverick Square, has been visiting the city’s neighborhoods to recruit subjects for his linguistics research. Photo by Cydney Scott, BU Today.

Fall Newsletter - 2014

Check out the latest Linguistics newsletter !

Alumni Notes/News

See our Alumni Notes page. Please let us know what you're up to. Send your news and photos. We'd love to hear from you :-)

BULA on the Web

Check out the site for the BU undergraduate Linguistics Association:

BULA also has a Facebook page:

Events are open to the BU community, and if you'd like to help in planning future events, new BULA members are always welcome :-)

CAS Linguistics Facebook Page

Have a look:

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We welcome your suggestions about what else you would like to see there... Thanks!

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