Requirements of the Major

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Foundational Courses

Linguistics majors are required to take four core courses, giving them a strong foundation in the major subfields of the discipline:

  • Ling 101: Human Language
  • Ling 310: Phonology
  • Ling 322: Morphology
  • Ling 330: Syntax

Advanced Courses

Students then deepen their study in an area of their choice with one advanced course. Students may choose any 500-level course:

  • Ling 510: Phonological Theories
  • Ling 522: Advanced Morphology
  • Ling 530: Syntactic Theories
  • Ling 571: Structure of a Language

During their senior year, students also take an undergraduate capstone course with a significant data collection and analysis component:

  • Ling 690: Capstone in Linguistics

Elective Courses

Four 3-credit elective courses are required, which may be chosen from linguistics content courses offered in departments across campus. Courses are available in a wide variety of core and interdisciplinary topics. Students are advised to consult with the Undergraduate Advisor to select an array of courses relevant to their individual personal and professional goals.

Course Planning

Here are some sample Four Year Plans showing possible paths through the major. Consult with the Linguistics advisor to develop your own personalized plan!

Language Requirement

World IconIn addition to their linguistics coursework, majors must complete the fourth semester or higher of at least one foreign language. UW-Madison offers classes in over 50 different languages during the Fall and Spring semesters, with even more opportunities for language study over the summer.

Declaring the Major

Check Box IconMake an appointment with the Undergraduate Advisor to declare the major. It is recommended that students declare the major by the sophomore year, so they can begin receiving advising on course selection and sequencing and get plugged in to academic events and professional opportunities in our program.

See the Linguistics Guide entry for complete information about all UW-Madison, College of L&S, and Linguistics major requirements. The information provided here is a brief summary.