For information, please contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Joint major in Italian & Linguistics

The joint major in Italian & Linguistics provides an opportunity for students to combine the study of Italian language, literature, and culture with the study of linguistics.

Learning Goals

Students graduating with a major in Italian & Linguistics will be able to demonstrate:

  • An understanding of the fundamental questions that drive modern linguistic research concerning formal structure, universals, acquisition, historical change, variation, and social dimensions of use, along with foundational knowledge in the core areas of linguistic theory.
  • The ability to identify and describe with precision the empirical patterns found in sets of language data, and to construct well-reasoned linguistic analyses by formulating, testing, and refining hypotheses about these patterns.
  • Proficiency in the Italian language at an advanced level, with respect to reading, writing, speaking, and understanding of spoken Italian.
  • Critical and analytical engagement with Italian cultural and literary traditions, practices, genres, and great works.
  • Systematic exposure to the earliest forms of written Italian from the 12th through the 17th century: Umbrian, Sicilian, Tuscan, and the emergence of literary Italian.

Major Requirements

Italian and Linguistics courses satisfy a wide variety of Hub units. For information about how Linguistics courses and degree programs fit in with the brand new BU Hub, see

The major consists of 13 courses, including at least 6 in Italian, and at least 6 in Linguistics. In addition to the requirements for the major, students must also satisfy general requirements of the College of Arts & Sciences. An advisor can assist you in designing your program of study.

Six courses in Italian

One advanced language course at the LI 300-level

Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque literature course, one from:

  • CAS LI 350 Italian Literature I: Medieval

  • CAS LI 351 Italian Literature II: Renaissance and Baroque

Four literature courses

  • Four Italian literature courses at or above the 300 level, from CAS LI 350, 351, 352, 450, 452, 453, 459, 553, 555, 556, 590.

Six courses in Linguistics

CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics
(offered every semester)

Introduction to Linguistics

These three courses can be taken in any order. They all have CAS LX 250 as a prerequisite.

Linguistic theory

Two Linguistics electives

Additional elective

Additional elective, one from:

  • CAS LI courses in language, literature, and culture

  • General linguistics courses: CAS LX courses at or above the 300-level

  • Other course in Italian language, linguistics, literature, or culture, with advisor approval

Declare your major

To declare an Italian & Linguistics major in CAS, submit the form here: Major Declaration form,

Honors Program

For details of the Honors Program in Italian & Linguistics, click here.

Printable Brochure

For a brochure with an overview of the Italian & Linguistics major, download this file: (print it out 2-sided; flip on short side).