The joint major in Linguistics & Computer Science allows students to explore human language from a variety of perspectives, through courses in phonetics and phonology, syntax, and semantics, and a choice of electives in many other areas. Students also learn about the organization, design, and construction of hardware and software systems for computing, and discover how such systems can be programmed to process and analyze large amounts of natural language data. This prepares students for a variety of career opportunities in Computational Linguistics and Natural Language Processing, including improving or developing new software in areas such as grammar checkers, machine translation, and information retrieval. It also provides an excellent background for students who wish to pursue graduate studies in these areas. Students graduating with a major in Linguistics & Computer Science Student will achieve:
The requirements include 15 courses in Linguistics and Computer Science (to be completed with a grade of C or higher): at least 6 courses in linguistics, 7 courses in computer science, and 1 course in computational linguistics or natural language processing (NLP). Students are also expected to be comfortable with standard high school mathematics as well as calculus at a level equivalent to completion of CAS MA 123.
Linguistics & Computer Science majors will fulfill at least 11 (and can fulfill up to 15) of the 26 Hub units through courses that satisfy requirements for the major.
6 Linguistics Courses
7 Computer Science Courses
1 Linguistics or CS Course, e.g.
1 Computational Linguistics or NLP Course, e.g.
Students may take courses to fulfill some of these requirements (with advance approval of their advisor) in the BU Study Abroad and Internship programs. For further information, see BU Study Abroad’s website:
In addition to the standard joint major, we also have an Honors Program in Linguistics & Computer Science. For further information, see the Honors Program page:
Director of Undergraduate Studies