College of Liberal Arts & Sciences


What is Linguistics?

Linguistics studies the structure, use, and development of languages over time. Our program provides a solid background in all the core areas of theoretical linguistics. As a Linguistics student, you will become competent in at least two languages. You'll also gain knowledge in linguistic areas of psychology, sociology, and anthropology. You will study speech and hearing science, computer science, and more. In this major, your coursework will build skills in analytical reasoning and argumentation. Classes will also enhance your writing and observational skills. Students may gain additional training by combining this major with certificate programs. Possibilities include:

  • Teaching English as a Second Language
  • Translation Studies
  • Global Security

Career Options

  • Business
  • Computational linguistics
  • Education
  • Forensic linguistics
  • Government
  • Lexicography
  • Nonprofit work
  • Publishing
  • Translation

Post-Graduation Success1

82% employed or continuing education

64% employed after graduation

16% attending graduate school

2% volunteering

$47,721 average starting annual income

Sample employer destinations: English Program in Korea (EPIK), Epic Systems, DYB Choisun English Academy View All

Sample grad school destinations: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University of Leipzig, Tribeca Flashpoint Academy View All

Review Criteria

First-Year Major-Specific Criteria

  • Demonstrated understanding of and interest in the major

View All Review Criteria

Transfer Criteria

Transfer Guide

Graduation & Retention2

4.1 years to degree

93% first-year retention rate

61% four-year graduation rate

86% six-year graduation rate

Annual Program Costs3

Illinois Resident

  • Tuition: $12,712
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses: $18,222
  • Total: $35,862


  • Tuition: $31,832
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses:$18,562
  • Total: $55,322


  • Tuition: $34,280
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses: $18,562
  • Total: $57,770